I wanna start a band.
I know, Reel Big Fish tells us all not to. It’ll end up sounding like crap and no one will understand, but gosh darnit, I want to be in a band.
Why Jason? What made you think this way?
Well, guys, I took a trip down memory lane tonight, well, this morning. Looking for pictures of my old Ibanez (now Jenn’s guitar….more on this later), I ventured over to tenemusonline. Yes, everything is lowercase. That was our style, get over it. What I found there really took me back. Jackson, Rick, and I were the best of friends. The three of us, though often joined by a rotating door of members (Kyle, Jason, Chris, Evan, Amy, etc.), truly seemed to enjoy playing music with one another and living the “Rock n’ Roll dream.” Sure, it never happened. We stopped getting along, I called Rick “insignificant” (sorry about that Rick, it was kind of harsh), Jackson and Kyle started getting more hardcore, singers were hard to find, when we had a singer (Amy) we had no drummer, our external lives were drifting apart, and our musical tastes began to vary incredibly. By the time any of us were any good at our instruments, it had fizzled apart.
A little history about the group. The band was formed with Rick (drums), Jackson (bass), Evan (vocals), and myself (guitar). None of us knew how to play anything, except for Evan, but we’ll get to that later, so we took lessons. Evan was supposed to be just a singer, but things got nasty when he said I was a poor guitar player. We kicked him out, or he quit, but we kept the rubber ducky.
The trio rolled on, enlisting Andrew to sing our songs for us. We held a concert in Rick’s garage, and it went incredibly well. Just kidding, we sucked. My playing was terrible, Rick was cymbal-heavy, Jackson was sloppy, and Andrew’s vocals were less than stellar. But hell if we cared. We were in a rock band and having the time of our lives! Andrew stayed on to perform at StreetJam 2002, and is also one of two vocalists recorded with tenesmus. I can only find one of the recordings, and it’s Lost, Not Found, recorded on a four-track in Rick’s bedroom and can be found here.
So what if the recording quality is terrible and the singing is slightly sub-par? We rocked! That song is still a kick-butt song and I started jamming to it as soon as I found it.
Here’s where things got a little hectic. Kyle was beginning to play guitar, so we picked him as backup. We also wanted a good singer (no offense, Andrew), for the upcoming Northwest High School Battle of the Bands. Somehow, we ended up with Chris Ross, a Mormon who apparently was blessed with incredible vocal abilities. He was not. At the BotBs, Chris was not on target and Kyle’s guitar was way too loud. We bombed. There’s a recording, somewhere, on CD, of that song. If you have it…..please distribute it to me. NOW.
Chris ended up going to the wayside at this point, and we picked up Jason Grant, a devout Christian with a nice solo career, and he claimed to be a good singer as well. Maybe its just our playing, but his voice never matched us. His debut with the group at a garage concert did not go so well, and eventually, he was dropped.
Then the whole “let’s not be friends anymore” shit happened, and Rick quit. He went on to join Solarity, who would go on to perform strongly over the next year, but never really got out of high school.
The fire was going out, but Jackson brought in Amy, an singer trained in Opera talents, and surprisingly, the sound was working out. The name was changed to Hoover’s Last Stand, and a new website was built. Too bad we had no drummer and by this point we were all bummed out and trying too hard to write good songs. Eventually, we stopped planning band practices.
The truth is that tenesmus failed because of one reason. As a band, it stopped rocking. We forgot what really mattered and kept trying to make grand statements when all we needed to do was shut up and rock the shit out of some power chords.
Check out the recording posted earlier, I remember how it felt to lay that track down, and part of me wishes to feel that way again someday.