a Roky Erickson tidbit

from: Mugtoe

This guy I knew in high school had a brother in the Nervebreakers in Dallas. We used to go sit in their storage warehouse and watch them practice, though I never saw them live. They opened for the Sex Pistols at the Longhorn Ballroom in Dallas in '78. I was just lookin thru a reminiscence at this site: http://www.ussrlabs.com/history.htm and saw this bit that was interesting:

"When Nervebreakers manager, Tom Ordon and Mike set up a show which would feature the Nervebreakers opening and the Nervebreakers as Roky Erikson's back up band headlining, They were stoked! Mike and Barry spent hours with a thirteen song demo of Roky songs figuring out parts and arrangements and the band practiced diligently. They had it DOWN! The night of the show at sound check was when the band met Roky for the first time. With matted hair, well past his shoulders and matching chest length beard , this emaciated, chainsmoking man could have been anyone living in a refrigerator box under a highway overpass. Tom strapped his guitar on Roky and they started to rehearse a bit. Roky asked what they'd like to play and the band suggested starting with Bermuda. Roky said O.K. and started playing. Then, he turned to Barry and said " What's the third chord?" Barry , looking puzzled, said "Roky......you WROTE it." To which Roky replied "I know." So Barry and Mike showed Roky the chord changes and they made it through the song pretty well. They played one more song and Roky said that he was tired and would like to go lie down for a while. This was going to be SOME show! When the show started, the Nervebreakers were understandably,a bit worried. It was amazing! Roky fed off of the energy of the small but enthusiastic crowd and , other than not noticing that his guitar had come unplugged and , at the end of Wind And More, suddenly adding a reprise ending , it was magic! The band caught the changes and followed Roky wherever he wanted to go. If Roky was going off a cliff, he wasn't going alone. But he didn't. He danced on the precipice, never falling into the abiss. There was another performance of Roky and the Nervebreakers at DJ's but he wasn't nearly as comfortable with a mostly rowdy, punk audience. Roky stayed with Tom and Tom's wife Lorie for a couple of weeks and Tom taped hours of interviews long into the early morning hours, chronicling the workings of the mind of a mad genius. The Nervebreakers would, occasionally come into their dressing room and be surprised to find Roky sleeping on the sofa but, then alas, finally,the visit ended; Roky boarded a bus back to Austin and a brush with greatness was over."

I'd really like to hear some of those interview tapes they made.



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