Thursday, May 17, 2007

bobby soxx

Having read the name of Bobby Soxx recently via the Stash Dauber, I figured I had to offer a little input as well as insight. I always considered the late Señor Soxx a friend as well as a genuine madman with talent to boot.
Everyone who ever knew the man has at least one good story to tell. Here are a few memories to share:
I suppose I should start with the first time I ever met Bobby. I was playing in a band called The Visitors at a club called DJs over in Dallas. I do believe the year to have been 1979 and we were opening, if memory serves correct, for The Fort Worth Cats. A half year later would see me join that band, but that’s another story.
Anyway, I was sitting with fellow band members sipping on a cold beer and noticed a spike-haired, tattoo-covered guy wearing glasses that resembled the type worn by Elvis Costello. He seemed a bit on the hyper side and was walking around talking to anyone who would listen or not listen. He cared not one way or other.
Having emptied my beer mug, I strolled to the bar and ordered another. After paying, I turned around and fear gripped me as I saw that my seat had been taken by this guy. DJ’s was a tiny place and there was no place else to sit, so I thought I would just wander back over there and stand until he left to go about his business. Keep in mind the year here and realize that Bobby stood out with considerable authority. For that matter, he would probably still stand out today even with the proliferation of the tattoo generation.
Walking to just the side of him, I took a drink and tried to casually gaze around as the music on stage steadily gained volume.
Bobby leapt to his feet, grinned a Bobbyish grin and put his arm around my shoulder. “Oh man! I didn’t mean to take your seat! Here! Sit your ass back down! You rock on that bass man!”
Talk about a relief. Some of that relief came in retrospect as I began to hear more tales of his manic nature and as I grew to know him better.

A couple of months later at the same cub, which was a place, by the way, where one never knew who might show up. I encountered the likes of Dee Dee Ramone, David Byrne and Devo.
This particular night it was just us lowly locals and Bobby was fronting a band known as The Teenage Queers which was actually a concoction of a couple of the
Telephones and some other guy who’s name I do not recall.
We had just played and during a break in the music, Me, my singer and Bobby were out on the front stoop drinking bottled beer. I mention bottles because they were not cans and that seems more important in just a few seconds.
Now, Bobby had shaved his head in strips that ran lengthwise on his skull. He was wearing nothing but a blue and white striped raincoat. I was just in jeans and a T-shirt and my singer donned bright white pants that were soon to be bloodied. I think he had on some sort of bowler’s shirt, but do not really remember.
While we were enjoying some light conversation, a small green car pulled up to the corner. I think it was a Gremlin or a Pacer or some such vehicle of the times.
“Fuck all you fucking punk rockers!” one of the guys (there were three or four of them in the car) screamed form the window.
Bobby’s eyes lit up and he screamed, “Eat death, scum!” He then proceeded to smash his bottle against the corner of the wall, cutting his hand, thus splattering blood all across the sidewalk as well as my singer’s nice white pants.
At this point Bobby took off at a full run toward the car and I swear I have never seen the look of terror before like I saw in the eyes of the passengers as well as the driver of that car. Vroom? Vrooom? Vroooooom? Off they drove as fast as that piece of shit car could take them, but not before having the remnants of a beer bottle crash across their rear windshield. I never could tell if that broke or not. They never came back.
I was laughing hard. All my singer could was laugh too until he looked down.
“Goddammit! Look what he did to these brand new pants!”

This next story is one I heard second hand. The Stranglers were playing at the Hot Club in Dallas and Bobby somehow managed to make his way upstairs to the dressing room. The band told him to leave and he refused, telling them they would have to throw him out. So they grabbed him and threw him out the door and down the stairs.
Pissed off at this point, Bobby went out to the parking lot and slashed the tires on their tour bus. I was not there, but the story is probably somewhat, if not all the way accurate.

Wow! This is getting lengthier than I thought it would. I will close out with the story of what has to be the longest back bend by any band member anywhere. I used to do that a lot during leads or just bridges of songs. I would keep playing, but would bend backward in ridiculous fashion until I had to sing again or just got tired of it and wanted to move on.
I did this at some club one night. I do not remember where, but Bobby, an avid Cats fan was in the crowd and on the dance floor. This might have been at Zero’s over on Lancaster in Fort Worth.
Bending back, I saw Bobby stop hopping around and quickly walk to the front of the stage. He then proceeded to grab the end of my bass and began performing simulated oral sex on the thing. Christ! I was afraid of accidentally knocking out a few of his teeth.
Eventually, I was able to reach my right hand out far enough to give him a light slap to the side of his head. He just laughed and went back to hopping and gyrating all across the dance floor.

I am not sure exactly when Bobby died. Probably, I was in Mexico at the time. I do, however, remember the last time I ever saw him.
There was a reunion gig of several bands performing at the Major Theater in Dallas. We were all allowed about three or four songs.
I think we played three of our tunes and then invited Bobby Soxx up to sing Holidays in the Sun. He looked over at me and grinned, then glared at the crowd with a snarl that only he was truly capable of snarling.
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1 Comments:

Blogger The Stash Dauber said...

nice one, kid.

5:14 PM  

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