Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Reading Between the Lines by Brian Murphy

This week, I was going for something different. I figure, it's a new year.
Let's already break that mold I set last time. This time, I wanted one story from many viewpoints, as many viewpoints as I could get. Anyone involved in the story, I wanted to hear what they had to say. I figured since US history has a crazy revisionist slant, why can't the same (or similar) be said about hardcore stories?

For this particular installment, the boys from Up Front gave me the 411 on the
Daybreak EP. Side A of the matrix inquires "Where's Howie?" while Side B answers "Shhh, he's sleeping in the hills..."

I tried to track down Chris Cap, but had no such luck (hey, if you know Chris Cap, previously of Release, get in touch with me. I'd like to see if he remembers this story any differently).

First up, Jeff Terranova, Bass player for Up Front.

Okay, here is the whole story...

It was the summer of 1989 and Up Front were on the last leg of our US summer tour. It was a long, hot, month spent in a van with no air conditioning, that to this day, I am still impressed actually made it the 6,000 plus miles. When we hit Memphis on August 15th, we met up with the guys from Release to finish out the rest of the tour. Our show the next night in Atlanta got canceled, so we drove straight to Florida for our last two shows (supposed to be three, but one of those got canceled as well). Roger and Ari had been at odds with Jon and I for the majority of the tour and they decided that they wanted to ride in the Release van. In turn Chris Cap, Greg Shafer and Darren Walters rode with Jon and I and Mikey Fastbreak who we kidnapped from Huntington Beach CA and brought back to the east coast with us. Having these three guys in the van was now like an elementary school class when the teacher leaves the room. We were crazy, cracking jokes and acting stupid the whole time. Being friends with Darren and the Release guys, we kinda had our own lingo and spewed out many words and expressions that made no sense to anyone but us, and Mikey fit right in.

There are dozens of crazy stories that I can tell from these few days together, like Rob pissing in the ice maker at a hotel and jumping on and off of trains, or Greg enticing a hot girl in a convertible to take off her top and trade shirts with him, or the crazy state trooper in Alabama that tailed us for like 30 miles, but I will stick with the origin of the Daybreak 7" matrix.

It was late at night and we were in Florida heading to Miami Lakes. Chris Cap was driving, I was sitting shot gun and the rest of the guys were asleep in the van. We were talking and getting real loopy, and if you are in a band, you know the importance of having someone sit shot gun to stay awake with the driver so that he does not fall asleep and crash. So, it's not the qualityof the conversation, it's the conversation itself that matters. Anyway, it's late, we are beyond silly at this point and we see a sign for Howie In The Hills. We both start cracking up and blurting out stupid random remarks about Howie being up in the hills. Why is he there? Who put him there? Can he leave? At the end of it all, "Shhhhh Howie's sleeping in the hills... don't wake him" was the phrase that stuck with us for years to come and spawned the matrix inscription on the Daybreak 7" Where's Howie?... Shhh, he's sleeping in the hills...

Jeff Terranova

Then there is Jon Field. You may recall him as the guitar player from Up Front.

Well, I was asleep for the conversation that led to this mystery, but I woke up near the end of it. If I remember correctly, we had been driving to Miami for one of the last shows on our '89 tour. I think Greg & Chris Cap from Release were up that night along with Jeff. I think Cap was driving? We had passed a sign for a town in Florida called Howie in the Hills (actually, Howey-in-the-Hills: I just looked it up on Google maps), and the lack of sleep had them in hysterics over the name. Jeff and Cap were having the main conversation; I think everyone else was asleep. One of them would say "Where's Howey?" And the other would answer "Sssshhhhh, he's in the hills, he's sleeping......don't wake him up." Then they'd break out in hysterical laughter. You really have to have driven until you see aliens standing in the middle of the road b/c you're so tired to really appreciate this story! In fact, I think Cap had also seen a giant sasquatch in the middle of the road that night. To this day we still joke about that night—even our drummer who wasn't in the band yet at that point.

I can't remember if there were any other people in the van that night. They may have been asleep, or they may have been in the Release van. This is when Ari & Roger were in Up Front. Chris Cap from Release would be a good one to contact about this; others might not have much to add. But I'm not sure how to get in touch with Cap.....


There you have it. That's the story behind the wacky phrases on the Daybreak EP. Who'd have guessed?

To wrap up this weeks segment, here's a little treat from Brett Beach (C'mon, you know who he is. There is no need for me to break out his pedigree) in regards to the Floorpunch LP.

Here's one for ya... the FP LP says "Check this out Danny boy..." or something like that (I'm at work, check your vinyl). That quote is from Rob Fish's father. He had microwaved a hot dog with a couple slices of cheese on it and proudly presented it to Dan Hornacker (who at the time loved food) with that quote. Still to this day when we have some impressive food, like at a tailgate for instance, we'll say "Check this out Danny boy."

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