Archive for the ‘Deep 6’ Category

Deep 6

Monday, June 14th, 2010

As promised, here is the first of several posts I plan to do about a band that appears on many of the Danceland/Bonkers flyers seen on this blog:

Deep 6.

Deep 6 was a band from Latrobe. Dave, John, Jeremy, and Jerry all went to Latrobe high school and formed Deep 6 around 1986 with the band lasting till around 1990.

I thought the first time I heard Deep 6 was when we (DA) “competed” against them at the Battle of the Bands at Danceland in December 1988, but Jeremy told me that Deep 6 actually played a show with Pittsburgh’s Heretics at Danceland in Feb of 1988 before the Battle of the Bands show later that year in December. I was at the Heretics show, so actually, that was the first time I saw Deep 6. By the time I saw Deep 6 again, several months later, I remembered that they were much tighter as a band (not to say they were sloppy the first time I saw them) and it was obvious that they were practicing a lot. I guess all that practicing paid off because they won the “battle” and got some recording time at the local Gamut Recording studio. I am going to post some songs from this Gamut recording in a later post.

As for the Deep 6 sound. I thought they sounded like (and looked like…at least Jeremy) the Jesus and Mary during their excellent Psychocandy period, but unlike the Jesus and Marychain, Deep 6 had a “real” drummer who played a real drum kit (not a standing up “Moe Tucker style” drummer). This of course made Deep 6 a little more rocking than the more somber Jesus and Marychain. I also think they sounded similar to R.E.M’s Murmur record. Although, I noticed this after the fact and did not make the connection back then. The Cult, The Replacements, and early U2 also come to mind when describing Deep 6’s influences, but I am sure there are many more, but why listen to me when you can make up your own mind by downloading and listening to the excellent basement recordings of Deep 6 that I have included at the end of this post!

Another thing I noticed when I saw Deep 6 was that they had a ton of loyal Latrobe fans at their shows. I remember the crowd really cheering them on at the Battle of the Bands gig. They also had a lot more girl fans. :)

Above: An early “promotional” photo of Deep 6. From L to R – John Orzehowski, Dave Johnson, Jerry Edris, and Jeremy Ryan.

I  e-mailed all the guys in Deep 6 and asked if they could write some thoughts on the band, the Latrobe/Greensburg scene, Danceland, or whatever memories or interesting stories they may have about Deep 6 and include them in this, and future post about their band. There is what I have from them so far:

Early days and the formation of Deep 6

Dave Johnson (Guitar and Vocals): The first kernel of the band started in 1986 when Jeremy, George Love, Garrett Haines and I made some “casio-rock” recordings at Garrett’s house. Soon after that, George got serious and bought himself a bass; soon after that he got invited to join Rob Henry and Derek Kolishinski’s new band New Federation. They were a punk rock band of course, and to my knowledge Latrobe’s only non-bar, non-wedding, non-metal band. Latrobe was awash in a sea of mullets, Bon Jovi enthusiasts, and acid wash jeans back then and New Federation was very inspiring to us. We wanted to make a real band, too.

The problem was that we had no idea how to play or what we were doing! But we knew that we loved doing it and we wanted to get better.

In spring of 1987 (I think) Jer and I drove to Youngwood, PA to buy our first electric guitars at an amazing place called “Fillion music”. George recommended it to us. “Fillion music” was the living room of some crazy older guy where he gave music lessons and sold cheap off-brand instruments .

Armed with our cheap guitars, we had to find a rhythm section. I knew Jerry at school and someone told me that he played bass. I passed him in the hallway at school one day and said, “hey man, do you wanna play in a shitty band?” and he said “sure!”. Jerry knew John from the school band, recruited him, and that was that.

So then we started the process of writing songs, practicing, and making cassette tapes in John’s parents’ basement. On nice days we’d play outside on the driveway.

And here are some mp3’s from those very Basement Tapes. Enjoy!

  1. Betray
  2. Crawl Into Me
  3. Crack Of Dawn
  4. Cut
  5. Hanging
  6. Hatred
  7. Shadows
  8. Underwater
  9. Untitled
  10. Want
  11. We Bled

Old Danceland/Bonkers Flyers Unearthed

Saturday, June 5th, 2010

Back in an old post about Danceland I mentioned several memories I had from various shows that were going on at Danceland in the summer and fall of 1988 (Cynics, Heretics, etc.). I also mentioned that I thought that 1988 was the year that Dave Roman and Harry started to do a lot of huge multi-band bills and “Battle of the Band” gigs. I final got my hands on some old fliers that document a few of these 1988-89 shows (Thanks so much to Lisa K and Mike M for sending me all their cool stuff!). I think I remember several of these shows, but there are a couple I do not remember or forgot about.

This Heretics / Deep Six show was great!

I can not remember December Campaign or Next President. I assume they were local bands? Anyone have any memories of them? Please leave a comment in this post if you do.

It seems that there were two versions of the Murr/Deep Six flyer above. One has December Campaign and the other does not. At first I thought  December Campaign cancel or got added to the bill but it appears this was a different show and someone got lazy and decided to just reuse an old flyer instead of making a new flyer.

I think the “New Music Night” flyer above marks the start of Dave Roman’s many DJ gigs at Danceland, Bonkers, and later “Illusions.” Dave was a good DJ and would play some really fun 80’s dance and New Wave music for all the punker/waver girls and guys to do their “mold the clay” dance moves to. I think Harry set these New Music Nights up after a dance place in Greensburg called Johnny B’s closed down, or ended their all ages Sunday night dance nights. The Sunday Johnny B’s dance nights were a lot of fun and it provided a place for many local like-minded kids, who had similar tastes in music, to hang out. Eventually, I think Harry moved the New Music Nights to Fridays where Dave R would DJ and play his techno/house music for many years throughout the 90s (I personally liked the New Wave stuff Dave played over his techno/house phase but it was still fun to go to Bonkers/Illusions on Friday nights and bug him to at least play “Genius of Love” or maybe even “Somebody” during the slow dance portion of his set).

I don’t think I remember the September 18th 1988 Danceland Barbed Wire Dolls gig at all. For those of you who are unfamiliar with them, the Barbed Wire Dolls were an all female punk rock band from Pittsburgh and I remember seeing them several times around 1988-89. I think they were the opening band at the very excellent Warzone gig that was at the Electric Banana (Summer 1988?). I know that Warzone was booked at Danceland/Bonkers a little later that year because the flyer above mentions the show and I think I have  a couple different flyers documenting the show (plus DA was on the bill) but the show end up getting canceled for some reason that I can’t recall.

The flyer above mentions The Affordable Floors, but I don’t think they ever played Danceland/Bonkers. Does anyone remember if they did or not?

You will probably notice that many of these fliers document several shows by local bands The Murr and Deep Six. I have mentioned both these bands in the past but I am planning to do some more extensive post about each band very soon!

I also received several versions of different NOFX flyers from both their Danceland/Bonkers gigs that I wrote about in a past post. I guess these flyers were made by different people for the same shows.

Again, this flyer above looks like it was recycled from the 6 band show flyer at the beginning of this post. Why is it that I think this is a “Dave Roman” thing! :).