Today for our ongoing search for 30 songs to include in the High Performance Rodeo Calgary Songs Project, we reached out to our pals in the Forbidden Dimension. Why? Well, we're not entirely sure. We thought they'd have some interesting stuff to share. And, by gum, they did! Well, they took things in a bit of an interesting direction, but, hey, when your band is almost 30 years old, you're allowed to have a certain range of freedom.
We call this one Five Characters In Search of an Epitaph...once you could find them in Calgary, but now you could only find them...in the Twilight Zone. (The Louisiana was kind of a character in a way...and sort of its own Twilight Zone as well!)
Cal Levitt: My favourite memories of Cal was last call at the Ship where he'd be dancing on the table tops. I saw a picture of him in a suit when he was a young engineer and he reminded me of a very handsome, young Jack Palance. Era: 90s
P.T. Bonham (the Most Nostalgic One):
The 5 Star Bag Lady: She was a somewhat scary woman who perpetually wore sunglasses and a hat adorned with 5 plastic stars. She was the first shopping cart person that I ever encountered. People said she was actually a millionaire. Probably not. Era: early 80's.
The Whooper: The Whooper was a conservatively dressed older man who tirelessly walked the streets of down-town, usually with a shopping bag in each hand. Every block or two he would give forth with a lusty Stampede-style "WHOOOP!" I'm guessing the bus drivers knew him pretty well. Era: early 80's.
The Louisiana: Located in the Motel Village this was a somewhat impossible combination of great Cajun food and low prices. Run a bit haphazardly by a small family the only downside to eating there was being interrogated by the precocious daughter. Re-surfaced briefly on 10th Street in Kensington but it just wasn't the same. I still dream of the Louisiana rice 'n' beans to this day. Era: mid 90's?
Disco Grandma: Often seen shakin' it on down in a strawberry-coloured wig, hot pants and go-go boots, dancing with her reflection in the big mirrors to the music wafting out from the nearby Sam the Record Man in TD Square. Era: 80s.
P. T. Bonham's Top 5 Calgary Songs:
Bubble Gum - Ex Boyfriends: Mike Paton's most awful guitar sound in the world turns into the most beautiful Johnnie Marr impression ever in the chorus. Plus Jean's backups - this was my fave version of the TXBFS.
Boner - El Caminos: they took the best punk idea ever (1/2 the song is full time the other 1/2 is ... 1/2 time) from the Bad Brains and made a whole band out of it. Plus Kamil is Calgary's Mark E. Smith.
Mom, Dad and the Kids: Eye on You: Kids is pronounced kayyyy-ids. That's why.
The Submersibles: the New 1-2: A perfect song made even more perfect by Toby's 4 second stick on rim solo. If there was a Canadian equivalent of the English expression "The Dog's Bollocks" I'd use it to describe this masterpiece.
Eyeballs - Thee Cryptics: Ian Manhire is a really great songwriter. This is the only one I can remember the name of.
Virginia Dendata's Top 5 Calgary Songs:
Ramblin’ Ambassadors - The Hairless Cat
Von Zippers - Insect Idol
Color Me Psycho - My Favorite Nightmare
The Brenda Vaqueros - The very last song in the set at the Palomino before Adam moved to Vancouver left an indelible impression on me and I’m sorry that I don’t recall the title. (Kenna's Note: Virginia, thank so much for including this song. It was "All Over Now" by X from Australia, so sadly NOT a Calgary song)
The Shiverettes – Stephen Harper Suck My Dick
Both Color Me Psycho and Forbidden Dimension have kept showing up on other peoples' top 5 lists, and they're among the bands where it's going to be tricky to settle on one song if they make the cut. Color Me Psycho's Black Corvair and Sacred Valley Penetration both have been suggested, and Forbidden Dimension songs that have been mentioned so far ar Dial "M" For Monster, Tonight I Paint In Flesh Colour, Martian Death Saucer and 13 Bloody Graves. Which would you choose? Let us know below!