Sunday, February 20, 2011

When I was a Rock Chick - Part 2

So....I was in, and it was awesome!

We had the perfect set up.

The drummer (my boyfriend) lived in what used to be his dad's engineering business in an industrial area of the outer suburbs.  It was a very large factory with living quarters at one end (which by this time I was living in as well).

The best thing about this set up was that industrial areas have no noise restrictions - we could jam 24/7 if we wanted.  But, we didn't.  We still all had our day jobs.

I was an admin assistant, the drummer was a toolmaker, our lead guitarist was an apprentice tradie of some sort, as was our rhythm guitarist and lead singer.  Our sax player was a mechanic and our bass player was an apprentice chef. 

We'd all toddle off to our day jobs, then every night after dinner, we'd practice.  When practice was done we'd smoke a joint and either practice some more or just sit on bean bags in the corner and crap on.

Let me tell you, being the only girl amongst 6 guys, EVERY night of the week...was very interesting!  Some of the stories I heard will never, ever fade (even though I wish they would).  Wanking stories were  my favourite... hahaha!  I seriously think they forgot I was there sometimes.


We started getting local gigs not long after I joined.  We played at quite a few of the pubs around Perth.  At first, my nerves were so bad I would nearly vomit every time I had to get up on stage (especially if I had to get out the front for a song).  Eventually I discovered bourbon....and that pretty much took care of that!

Country tours were the best fun.  We'd hire a bus, trailer, pack up all our shit and we were off!  The drives usually ended up WAY longer than planned.  A 6 hour drive ended up around 10 hours because we were all so off our face there was always someone who wanted munchies at every frikkin' stop!

We did Geraldton, Albany, Busselton, Kalgoorlie and Kambalda.  Our two guitarists were both from Kambalda so we always had a blast when we were there.  We even snagged a Christmas/New Years gig which had us up there for nearly two weeks.  The NY's gig was over 3000 people at the massive Kambalda Hotel.  It was awesome!  We drove back to Perth that night, straight after the gig, to perform New Years night at a club in Fremantle on NO SLEEP, but we somehow pulled it off.  

My time with the band was one of the highlights of my life.  It was only 2 years, but it was the BEST.  

I left the band in '87.  I'd split with the drummer a few months before that, which made things kinda awkward.  Then I developed RSI in my forearms, from my job.  I ended up on workers comp.   I couldn't even hold a pen....and I couldn't play.

So, that was that.

But it wasn't all doom and gloom.  The band got another keyboard player, and carried on as usual.

I consoled myself with booze...and men.....lots of men.

Being in a band is kinda awesome....if you are single.  The guys got SO laid, it was ridiculous.  The drummer and I were happy with our coupledom..and that was fine at the time.

However... I'd just come out of a three year abusive relationship, straight into another 18 month,  serious relationship with no time to breathe....and now was time to cut loose!  The three years between leaving the band and meeting my ex -husband to be, were spent PARTYING!

I had a lot of catching up to do.  All those hot guitarists and drummers (I don't do bass players) who I could only admire from afar while with my boyfriend....were fair game now.  I wasn't a groupie you see.  I was now 'legit'.  I was one of them.  

They were a FUN three years.  I even accidentally slept with our rhythm guitarist while up at the Bindoon Rock Festival (my bad).  

I loved to hang out at pubs and stand up at the bar during sets. I'd wait for a beautiful guitarist to wander over for a drink when they were on break, and wait for those magic words - "Hey, didn't you used to play keyboards for the Boxcars?"

"Why, yes I did.  Buy me a drink?"

The End.

Next up - Part 3: What happens on tour stays on tour - The Photos


Em said...

Man i think i'll live vicariously through you...I love reading about your life! You are one strong soul in a heck of a woman!


Hilary said...

Sounds like the band days were awesome times Frankie, and you have great stories to tell the kids too - do they realise how cool mum is?

K said...

Can see your blog again and thank fuck! Rock Chick Pt.2 was glorious

Frankie said...

Thanks guys xxx