April 11, 2004


Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:08 pm

Maui sunset.jpgOn Monday, we will be flying off to Hawaii for some sun, fun, beer, booze, and music – lots of music. This marks the second reunion of the band I played with in the sixties. We got together two years ago, with instruments, in Estes Park, Colorado (not too far from where two of the guys live now), and after having not even seen one another for 30+ years, let alone not having played together, it was like we had shown up for a rehearsal after a two-week layoff. The friendships were just as strong and the melodies and harmonies were just as sweet. At the conclusion of the Colorado get-together, we wanted to plan another one, and Hawaii seemed a natural, since one of the guys has lived on Maui since about 1969.

We were a bit of an oddity way back then, as the band was comprised of three Japanese-American brothers and two pale-faced Irish-Americans, one of whom was Yours Truly. Although all of us were born and bred in New Jersey, we capitalized on the unique “look” of the band by performing in happi coats. In keeping with the “theme,” I was always introduced on stage as “Kato,” which matched up quite well with the brothers’ genuine Japanese names.

We played all over the metropolitan area, including the infamous Union City, New Jersey, which was known locally for: (a) its gangsters, and (b) its 3:00 a.m. closing time. I recall being a callow youth humping a drum set over passed-out drunks on the sidewalk at 4:00 a.m. It was a great way to cut one’s musician’s teeth.

The band pretty much cratered when, just about at the same time, I was drafted and one of the guys moved to Hawaii. After returning from the Army, I continued to play in bands (and occasionally still do), but I have a special fondness for this band and the guys who were part of it. Hell, it was the sixties, and we were great friends playing rock and roll. What could be better?

While we are in Hawaii we also plan to do some sightseeing, including a trip to the Big Island and to Oahu long enough to visit the U.S.S. Arizona. I am also looking forward to spending some time hanging around on the beach and doing a good deal of nothing.

See ya in a couple of weeks.

Note: As was the case two years ago, we decided for lots of reasons (including the hassle and cost of transportation) to use a drum machine rather than drums. So, instead of bringing sticks, I will be bringing and playing this (only mine is black with a maple neck).


  1. Have fun in the sun and don’t worry about how jealous you are making some of us!

    Comment by bogie — April 12, 2004 @ 12:15 am

  2. Let’s see, wasn’t it “Come on off that pedestal, now, or you’ll never, ever know how much you’re missing”? Wish I still had that 45.

    Comment by Jack Bog — April 12, 2004 @ 3:32 am

  3. Jack is referring to a record the band made in the sixties. I think I still have one of the 45’s. Better yet, at the Colorado reunion, one of the guys arranged for each of us to have a CD with the record (both sides) on it.

    See ya in a couple!

    Comment by Jim - Parkway Rest Stop — April 12, 2004 @ 4:17 am

  4. I just want to say that I am “in ore” of that axe.

    Comment by mtpolitics — April 12, 2004 @ 9:41 am

  5. Have a great time!

    Comment by Rita — April 12, 2004 @ 10:48 am

  6. I’m so jealous! A good old fashioned jam session with the crew. The band I traveled with after college is spread to the 4 corners so we’ll never get together.

    Have fun and enjoy the sun. You derserve it for several reasons, the Jersey winter not being the least. We’ll miss ya!

    Comment by Tammi — April 12, 2004 @ 1:54 pm

  7. Enjoy your vacation Kato and we’ll see you in a few!

    Comment by Randy — April 12, 2004 @ 2:58 pm

  8. Damn sorry I won’t be there to greet you. Would’ve been nice to share a Mai Tai on the beach. Next time.

    Comment by Sgt Hook — April 14, 2004 @ 7:02 am

  9. Well, hell, I AM here and I didn’t get any warning. Pooh.

    Comment by Venomous Kate — April 14, 2004 @ 7:02 pm

  10. Letter of the Day: P

    P is for pretty damn painless, transferring to WordPress, except my permalinks are puky.

    P is for a pox on Palestinians.

    P is for pollen.

    P is for photoshopped putrescence?

    P is for partisan pigeon hunting.

    P is for poundage.

    P is for…

    Trackback by Electric Venom — April 14, 2004 @ 7:24 pm

  11. Well, I guess one good thing about not getting around to all my blog reading. It leaves me way less time to be jealous! Hawaii – warm – sun – ocean… *sigh*

    Comment by Teresa — April 15, 2004 @ 8:02 pm

  12. Here’s wishing you “heavy pu-pu” as the natives call it.

    Don’t worry. It’s a compliment.

    Comment by Jeff — April 15, 2004 @ 11:44 pm

  13. I envy you the band’s reunion, but I’m happy to say that we’ll get to visit Hawaii later this year. It will be our first visit.

    I hope your trip was wonderful!

    Comment by Buffy — April 18, 2004 @ 10:15 am

  14. Here For The Party

    I saw something like this over at Dana’s and when I heard this song I thought – I NEED to do that, that thing with the links. Yes, it’s another Gretchen Wilson song, but hey – It’s perfect!!! I wanted…

    Trackback by Tammi's World — October 9, 2005 @ 8:42 pm

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