Thank you so much for Live
At the Wax Museum. It's really special to
me because I was there - just a teenager with a fake ID, that
I got from a fake ID dealer - "Fish" - whose father had a laminating
machine. That magic night, December 9, 1982, was the very first
time that I saw NRBQ and I could not believe my eyes and ears.
It was love from the first note. There they were: Terry, the piano
playing dynamo who looked and danced like Dennis the Menace, Joey
who looked and sang like Beatlemania, and Tom who looked and played
like a drum pounding teddy bear, and of course the guitar monster
Big Al. Plus the Whole Wheat Horns - Terry's bro Donn on trombone
and Mr. Spring on sax! Plus very special guest John Sebastian whose
opening set included the theme from Welcome
Back Kotter, which
being an owner of that 45 and a fan of the TV show, was a huge
thrill for me.
NRBQ was on a roll in 1982, and I was lucky to be in the right
place at the right time. My then boyfriend introduced me to Elvis
Costello, Squeeze and NRBQ. Elvis Costello and Squeeze were better
than just about anything else on Top Forty, but I flipped for NRBQ.
They blended all the styles that I loved - Beatles, my mom's old
rock and roll 45s, and jazz into a unique thing all (and only)
their own. Washington, DC was on a roll then too, the popular
radio station, WHFS, was truly groovy and alternative. Their after
school DJ, Weasel, played NRBQ everyday and he would always say
that Yankee Stadium was next
to Pet Sounds - the greatest
rock album ever - wow! Best of all my high school Richard Montgomery
in Rockville, MD had its own radio station. Even though I got cut,
my brother Rudi got to be a DJ and he played NRBQ every day before
class and during lunch. NRBQ was the most popular band in the world
at my high school. Like Beatles popular!
Back to the Wax Museum, it was in a terrible part of town, but
I wanted to go so badly that I must have lied about where I was
going because if I told my mom I would have never been able to
go. Nevertheless I was so excited about it that I drew a poster
of the band to hold up during encores - I had no idea people don't
do that in nightclubs - to me it was like going to see the Beatles
at Shea Stadium.
The concert was beyond my wildest dreams - I'm sure I can hear
my delirious squeals in the crowd! Afterward, we stopped at the
Howard Johnson's across from the Watergate Hotel to have grilled
cheese and fries. I got home so late that I was grounded for a
month. I can't believe it was over 20 years ago! From that night
on, NRBQ's music has been one of the most enduring and magical
things in my life. Thanks for the memories!