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Joe College circa 1979 / 1980:

Joe College circa 1979 / 1980:
Joe College and The Rulers 45 RPM Single

Livewire - Amnesty International blogging for human rights

Yuya Joe College's Facebook Wall

Saturday, December 19, 2009

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Here are some links to some other blogs I've been reading or working on:

1976; I'M EIGHTEEN, and I Don't Know What I Want

Continuing with the rockin' memoirs of classic punk rock singer Joe College, 1976 meant turning 18 and being able to legally drink. I had been able to buy liquor since I was 15 and beer from when I was sixteen, as my height and beard made me look older (one nickname at the time was Moses), and could get into most bars by the time I turned 17. Still, now I was legal and I imagine my consumption of the delicious spirits escalated further.

After leaving school at sixteen, I tried a variety of jobs but lasted longest at Emil's shoe factory on Fairview Avenue in Burlington, where we made Kodiak and other work boots. Jubilee Pool Hall at Brant Street and Caroline Ave was a favourite hangout, as was the newly-built Spencer Smith Park along the edge of Lake Ontario. In the summer we found places in town and in the countryside nearby to drink outside, and in the winter we rotated between different houses when people's parents were away. If there was beer and herb and music and a mix of goodhearted guys and gals, a memorable evening was pretty much guaranteed.

Around this time I was managing the Simon Leblovic fronted Interchange, sort of a bluesy Aerosmith / Rolling Stones style five man band. Simon left (later would join The Start in Toronto) and the remaining members led by Roy Furness hooked up with singer-guitarist Paul Stansfield and drummer Ted Hawkins to form The Specs, who played around Ontario through the late 1970s. These were all great guys to work with and Paul and my sister Debbie lived together for almost a decade and were married for the latter part of that era.

I was getting more and more into Bob Dylan and John Lennon, and by the following spring i would give up on the idea of being a bass player. I managed to buy a Harmony acoustic guitar for $20, and started learning to play it. I got the songwriter bug, and would begin my music career as a bluesy folky, only later cutting my hair and shifting to punk rock after moving to Vancouver and seeing DOA, The Subhumans and The Modernettes in 1979.

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