Bootleg of the Month ARCHIVES
The Draco Reptilians @ the Khyber Pass Pub in Philadelpia PA - August 3, 1991. (mp3; 43.8 MB)
The Dead Milkmen performed as The Draco Reptilians at the Khyber Pass Pub (a small bar on 2nd Street in Philly) opening for Ben Vaughn's band, Pink Slip Daddy. We used this occassion to test out a new set of songs which would eventually comprise most of the 'Soul Rotation' album. This was before we went into the studio to record these songs, so some of the arrangements are slightly different than the album versions. This is the only time that I can remember the DM performing an entire set of new material (besides our first ever show, of course).
The Dead Milkmen Interviewed by Scary Mary and Fred from WBGU-FM, backstage in Ann Arbor MI - March 6, 1989. (mp3; 10.1 MB)
A couple of college radio DJs from Bowling Green University in Ohio came backstage with a cassette tape recorder to capture some "station IDs" and a short interview to be aired on their station later. This is the 'unedited' version. On the other side of the tape that they sent us is the feature that aired which has snippets of this interview interspersed with songs from our albums. (Fred later found some fame as Wred Fright, the singer-songwriter and novelist and is now a member of the faculty of Ursuline College. Scary Mary is now a blogging under the name Groovymarlin.) I was going by the name Jasper Thread at the time.
Touch Me Zoo - Live at the Khyber, Philadelphia, PA - 1994. (mp3; 17.8 MB)
This was an early Touch Me Zoo show as a four-piece band, and it was our first appearance of many at the Khyber Pub in the Old City section of Philadelphia. If my memory serves me right, we opened for K. McCarty (of Glass Eye) on this date. This is a cheap, hand-held cassette recorder recording. The tape ended before the end of the set, so you miss one and a half songs.
Here is the set list:
Dead Milkmen - Rehearsal, Philadelphia, PA - 1991. (zip file of mp3s; 48.9 MB)
My good pal Seven Morris digitized this month's bootleg, and broke it into 35 sections. Download all of the tracks in one zip file from the link above.
This is a peek behind the scenes, during the rehearsals for some works in progress that would become key songs on the Soul Rotation album. This is all from one day of practice. The tape did not run for the entire session, though. It sounds like I was the person who stopped and started the recorder, which was probably a portable Panasonic cassette recorder with a built-in microphone.
T-Day, November 2005
Dead Milkmen - Live, Atlantic City, NJ - October 27, 1984. (mp3 39.1 MB)
Recorded live to cassette on a boombox device. This was a punk rock show we played with another local Philly band, Homo Picnic. Kind of rough around the edges, many of the songs at the time were new. We had been a band for about one year at this point.
Joe Jack Talcum - Live, Philadelphia, PA - December 2, 2004. (mp3, 62.4 MB)
This is a solo, acoustic show - my last of several such shows at South Street's Club 218, recorded from the mixing console. This was a Thursday night show. I hit the stage at around quarter to one and by then had a few beers in me. I remember getting to the club around 10 PM thinking I was right on time, but I was way too early. I was the only person there besides the bartender. What else was there to do but drink?
The set lasts about 54 minutes.
Special thanks to Ed Farrell for booking the show, mixing the sound, and making the recording available.
Dead Milkmen - Live at Abe's Steaks, Philadelphia, PA - March 2, 1985. (mp3, 26.2 MB)
Abe's Steaks was an actual steak shop (meaning Philly cheese steaks, burgers, fries, hoagies, etc.) on 40th Street just south of Market in West Philly that, for a couple years in the mid 1980s, held punk rock shows in the back room. You could get a cheese steak, fries and soda, and see a show for well under ten bucks! This show, one of several the Milkmen played at Abe's, was with other Philly bands: Psychotic Norman, The Johnsons, and The Fabulous Fondas on March 2, 1985. At this time, our first album, Big Lizard In My Backyard, was "in the can" but not yet released. We were just beginning to plan our first U.S. tour.
The set lasts about 45 minutes. The recording was made with a hand-held cassette recorder by a member of the audience.
Take Me Apart
Right Wing Pigeons
Vince Lombardi Service Center
Big Time Operator
The Town Managers - Live at a church youth center in Warminster, PA - March 6, 1998. (mp3, 14.7 MB)
Warminster is a suburban town north of the city of Philadelphia near where one of the Town Managers (Brian) grew up. This show was recorded by someone in the audience on a voice-activated cassette recorder in monophonic one-track sound. The Town Managers were Rick Luau (Chris Peelout) on drums and guitar, Frick Jones (Brian Sprenger, now of Kablammo) on bass (set 1) and drums (set 2), and me on guitar (set 1) and bass (set 2). We usually played two sets, and on this occassion we played two very short sets. This was a free, all-ages show with a lot of bands. The performance lasts about 21 minutes.
The songs are:
Ornamental Wigwam - Eardrum Land Sessions Rough Mixes, 1987 (mp3, 11.9 MB)
This dub of rough mixes starts off a little warbly. But, stick with it. The warble doesn't last. These three Ornamental Wigwam songs were recorded at Eardrum Land by Andy Bresnan and Chris Unrath. The first song is called Er Bits Du. The second song is an early version of Punk Rock Girl. The third, Song No. 15 was picked for inclusion in the You're Soaking In It compilation LP.
Butterfly Joe - Live in Toronto June 10, 2000 (mp3, 47.3 MB)
Recorded direct to mini-disc at Rivioli, Queen St, Toronto, Ontario. We drove straight from Philly for the show. We stayed overnight in Toronto, and drove back to Philadelphia the next day, a Sunday. These are each about twelve hour drives.
Butterfly Joe were:
Campus Voice Encounter Episode 29 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 7.51 MB)
Campus Voice Encounter was a syndicated radio show that was distributed on 12-inch vinyl records to subscribing college radio stations. It was a thing of the 80s I suppose. This is a short feature piece on The Dead Milkmen after the release of Eat You Paisley. This was probably from 1987.
Each 12 inch disc contained ten episodes, to be aired daily. Each side contained one week's worth of episodes. The interviews were not all devoted to musical personalities. The week that this episode aired also enjoyed interviews with Brian Bosworth (Football), David Lynch (Movie Director - Blue Velvet), and Stan Lee (Marvel Comics) as well as John Lurie of the Lounge Lizards.
Campus Voice Encounter executive producers were Jim Omastiak and Keith Bellows. The show was produced by Peter Gordon, for Thirsty Ear Communications, Inc., a company that began in 1979 in New York City and lives on today in the form a record label in Norwalk, Connecticut.
Dead Milkmen on WFNX FM Live recording from radio broadcast (mp3, 15.1 MB)
During the Amok in America tour with The Cavedogs and Mojo Nixon, the Dead Milkmen stopped by the WFNX studios in Lynn, Massachusetts to promote the show in Boston. This is an off-air recording of the live radio appearance. Thanks to G. P. McLaughlin for providing the recording.
Dead Milkmen - Live at Penn State, State College PA, July 12, 1987 (mp3, 30.2 MB)
A daytime, outdoor concert, this was one of the very few Dead Milkmen shows that was cut short. At the very end of 'The Thing That Only Eats Hippies' we were attacked by some theater students throwing raw eggs. One of the eggs managed to hit Dean and he stopped playing. The show was free and open to the public, though it was sponsored by the university and we were being paid to play. Security was lax. (I did not see who threw the eggs. It took us by surprise. However, I learned that the prime egg thrower would later go on to act in the daytime television soap opera All My Children. He also, coincidentally, worked with me in a coffee shop in Philly in the early 90s.)
Recorded on cassette by someone in the audience.
August 1983 Demo Recordings by Joe Jack Talcum and Dave Blood (mp3, 10 MB)
This tape came to my attention after a shelf came crashing down off my wall a couple days ago. In the process of putting things back in order I came across a cassette simply labeled 'August Demos'. I popped it in my deck and heard a song I had been wanting to hear for a long time, plus a couple others. These songs were recorded 23 years ago, shortly after the Dead Milkmen became a 'real' band.
Phun is a song that never made it as a Milkmen song, somewhat to my dismay. The lyrics were by Rodney, the music was by Dave and me. I guess it just got lost in the shuffle of all the other songs we had going on at the time. This is the very rough demo that Dave and I recorded shortly after coming up with the music. I don't think any other recording of the song exists. Dave's voice is the first one you hear. The voice asking for the time is Dave's brother, Joe, who was my house-mate at the time.
The next song is a demo by me, on acoustic guitar. The working title of this song was Before You Push The Button but it later became titled Song No. 15 when Dave and I recorded it as Ornamental Wigwam. (It was the 15th song on our first self-titled release.) The Wigwam version is quite different. We slowed it down and Dave added a dreamy repetitive bassline. (You can hear the Wigwam version on the Philly compilation You're Soaking In It and in the audio section of this site under "Ornamental Wigwam Live on Band Wagon".)
The last song is not so much a demo, as I probably never played it for anyone, but rather just a memo to myself. I recorded it shortly after coming up with the music to Rodney's lyrics for Bitchin' Camaro. Rodney wrote the lyrics down on paper and gave them to me. This is something I recorded, as I usually did back then, so that I wouldn't forget how it went. (I always wrote the chord progressions down on paper, but not the rhythm.) It amuses me now that I also bothered to overdub a second guitar. The walking bassline introduction came about later - probably in the very next rehearsal which would have been less than week from the time this was recorded. The spoken imrpov conversation intro in the final version was Rodney's idea and the bassline was Dave's.
Dead Milkmen Live at the Trocadero Philadelphia PA, July 28, 1990 (mp3, 60.1 MB)
This was recorded from the balcony of the Trocadero Theater in Philadelphia by David Loundsbury. It is not the complete show, though a good part of it. This filled one side of a cassette. (Part two was not on the other side.) As the radio station dee-jay mentions at the start of the show, this was our homecoming show for the first Metaphysical Graffiti tour of the United States and Canada. We were glad to be home.
Unfinished Song Demo by Dave Blood and Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 4.4 MB)
This is the only song on a short cassette tape labeled 'Song No. 22' (Talcum - Blood). It is from the same time that KKSuck2 was written (late 1985). I'm not sure if it was meant to be an instrumental or simply was never finished. At any rate, it never made it past this stage as far I can remember. I think this was recorded on Dave's boombox upstairs at the 44th Street apartment.
The Dead Milkmen Live the Roxy, Los Angeles CA, February 13, 1989 (mp3, 63.9 MB)
I'm not sure who recorded this show, or who digitized it. At the time of the show the album Beelzebubba was selling well. Punk Rock Girl was in rotation on MTV. We had a good crowd. Thanks to Cult Leader Lettuce for finding this bootleg and sending it to me. Here is the set list:
The Dead Milkmen Early 1985 Rehearsal, Philadelphia PA (mp3, 30.9 MB)
Cult Leader Lettuce found this bootleg on the Internet labeled as 'Dead Milkmen Rehearsals 1995'. The date is ten years off. It is actually from early 1985, circa March. It sounds like it was recorded in our basement practice spot, which we rented for a short while, in South Philly on 9th Street between Catherine and Christian.
Joe Jack Talcum Live (solo acoustic), Philadelphia PA, August 9, 2004 (mp3, 62.9 MB)
This is the soundtrack to a video recorded by Ed O'Toole at my second-ever solo acoustic show. It was my first of a series of solo shows at Club 218 on South Street in Philadelphia. There are a few seconds of silence near the start of the program. It's not your player malfunctioning. This show was a benefit for the Dave Blood Memorial Fund.
Dead Milkmen Live @ Tipitina's, New Orleans LA, September 17, 1990 (mp3, 101 MB)
I imagine this is one of the more well circulated Milkmen bootlegs. GlennK's Dead Milkmen site has a good description of it. It was recorded live at Tipitina's and broadcast on an FM radio station. Somewhat censored. This is a recording of what was broadcast. (Thanks to Lettuce for sending it.)
Dollar Signs In Her Eyes, Demo Recording, 1989 (mp3, 4.38 MB)
This is my home recorded solo demo for a Dead Milkmen song that would be recorded for the album Metaphysical Graffiti the following year. This demo was recorded on my Tascam 4-track cassette recorder at around the same time I recorded the Halvin' My Baby home-recorded cassette-only album.
Solo Acoustic Record Shop Show - Joe Jack Talcum, The Great Escape, Bowling Green, Kentucky, January 26, 2007 (mp3, 24.7 MB)
This short acoustic show was recorded at The Great Escape, a strip mall record store that sells vinyl, cds, dvds, comics, and more. I was under the influence of cough medication for this set. I was feeling a bit under the weather. (Brandon Harrod and Save Macauly the Band also played, but are not in the recording.) The songs are:
These Boots Are Made For Walkin' (Guitar Version) (mp3, 3.02 MB)
Unknown Instrumental (mp3, 4.34 MB)
These Boots Are Made For Walkin' (Keys Version) (mp3 3.66 MB)
- (Not Really) The Fresh Breaths, early 2000, home recordings
The Fresh Breaths were Chris Peelout and me on acoustic guitars. We existed after the Town Managers broke up and before the Low Budgets were formed and we played exactly three shows. These songs have nothing to do with acoustic guitars and therefore should not technically be credited to "The Fresh Breaths". However, these recordings were made in that same time span by Chris and me, so what the heck? One word of caution: these are extreme low-fi recordings.
I had a Sony MiniDisc player for a few months in the year 2000. I brought it to Chris's apartment for this session one Friday night. At the time, Chris lived in a second story apartment. We couldn't be too noisy because his landlady lived above him, so we recorded without amps using headphones and effects. These songs were recorded via Tascam cassette 4-track and mixed to two-track on the Sony MiniDisc. I think this was January of 2000, but I'm not entirely certain of the date.
We both played guitars on the first 'Boots' which I sang, and we both played keyboards on the instrumental, and Chris played drum machine and I played keys on the second 'Boots' which Chris sang. ('These Boots Are Made For Walkin' is a cover of a Nancy Sinatra song. It was written by Lee Hazlewood.)
My MiniDisc recorder stopped working sometime in the middle of the year (June). It would not record any new discs and eventually it stopped playing them. (It kept giving me TOC errors.) I decided to give the player and all of my discs to my friend Lettuce Head (a/k/a Cult Leader Lettuce) thinking he might be able to sort it all out. Lettuce claims the MiniDisc player was in fine working condition when he received it via the U.S. Postal Service, but I know for sure it was not working when I shipped it off. Anyway, I let Lettuce keep the MD player and discs, and he transferred some of the discs to mp3 for me, including these songs.
Struggle in the West (Goofadust) - Joe Jack Talcum, demo for Touch Me Zoo (mp3, 3.05 MB)
This song was written and recorded in the spring of 1996. It was meant to be a Touch Me Zoo song (post-Lawn King era) but the song never made it past this initial 4-track demo stage.
House Party in Allston (Boston) MA, 07-07-2007 - Joe Jack Talcum [abridged] (mp3, 36.1 MB)
This was recorded on a monophonic cassette recorder in a basement on Allston, Massachusetts at a house party during the solo acoustic tour I did with Ukebox. Things were a little slow to start out, but the energy picked up midset and really got crazy by the end. The tape player stopped before the end of the set, though. The songs are:
This set was dedicated to the memory of Scott Robb who passed away on July 2.
My friend Scott Robb passed away in his sleep on Monday, July 2, while I was on tour. (I was playing in Asheville, North Carolina on that day, one of Scott's favorite cities.) Scott was a great guy. He was a bicycle racer who won gold and silver medals and toured the world. He had a great sense of humor and a voracious appetite for music. He turned me on to a lot of great music including Calexico and The Mountain Goats. I will miss him.
'Yes and No' Interview - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 7.7 MB)
This silly interview was recorded on cassette by me during the Dead Milkmen's Bucky Fellini recording sessions in San Marcos, Texas in December 1986. Thanks for CLL Jason for converting it to mp3.
Dead Milkmen Rehearsals for Metaphysica Graffiti - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 8.16 MB)
Here is a selection from a rehearsal recorded in 1990 at the Delaware Ave rehearsal spot named 1020 RPM which the Dead Milkmen used. It was located at 1020 N. Delaware Ave (a/k/a Colombus Blvd.) in Philadelphia. The place no longer exists. The building at that address currentlty houses a recording studio and a mastering studio.
Sometime during the rehearsals for the album that would be known as Metaphysical Graffit I brought my Tascam 4-track cassette recorder and recorded some of the rehearsals. These songs were culled form one of those sessions. All were recorded live with no overdubs. The first is a song that never made it to the finished album. I'm not sure why. The second track is one that later evolved into a song on the album name 'Epic Tales of Adventure'. The third track is one of the ad-libs we would eventually refer to as Earls, versions of which would appear on the final album without titles.
Live in Jimmytown, 9/22/2007 - The Low Budgets (mp3, 41.64 MB)
This live set was recorded in Jamestown, New York on the first leg of the Low Budgets United States tour in September 2007. For this leg of the tour, Dandrew was replaced by Pat "Tingles" Attack on bass guitar. There was some technical problem with the bass amp, which was borrowed from another band on the bill, and was the reason for the pause between the first and second songs.
Like to Be Alone (Demo) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 4.9 MB)
I recorded this 4-track cassette demo with my good friend Seven (of Touch Me Zoo) back in 1994 as a demo for the Dead Milkmen for the album that would become the final Milkmen studio album 'Stoney's Extra Stout (Pig)'. This track was recorded upstairs in my apartment on Buckingham Place in Philadelphia. The basement of that apartment is where the Dead Milkmen practiced in our later years and where we recorded the band demos for 'Not Richard But Dick'. (The picture inside Stoney's was taken in that basement.) Seven played snare drum and hi-hat and manned the board for this recording.
Happy Birthday (Demo) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 5.2 MB)
Yet another Tascam 4-track demo. This was from early in 1994. The first band version of Touch Me Zoo performed it live at several of our shows that year. Touch Me Zoo recorded a 4-track demo of the song, as well, in the summer of 1994.
Live in Providence, Rhode Island at The Living Room, March 17, 1989 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 64.1 MB)
I'm not sure who taped this show or how a copy of the show came into my possession. The cassette is labeled '3-17-89 Living Room, Providence'. This show did not take place at the current location of the Living Room -- 23 Rathbone Street. But, from what I have read, the stage is exactly the same. I guess they moved the stage itself when they moved the venue. Anyway, we first played The Living Room in 1986 and it became the one venue in Rhode Island we would play regularly for the rest of our touring days. The manager's mom would provide bands with a home-cooked meal, which I remember being something we looked forward to on our New England tours. There was a spacious band room and always plenty of beer. The sound system was good and the sound guys were nice.
It sounds like the person recording the show pushed the pause button a couple of times, perhaps as a way to get the set to fit on one side of a 90-minute cassette. Therefore, some of the songs get cut off. The entire show did not fit. Here are the songs that fit:
Just as the tape ends, Rodney is bringing the introduction of the Bitchin' Camaro to a close during our rendition of Proud Mary.
Oh Yeah! - The Town Managers (mp3, 3.54 MB)
This is a song that Chris Peelout wrote for the Town Managers at the end of that band's career. (The Town Managers were Chris Peelout as Rick Luau, Brian Sprenger as Frick Jones, and me as Jonk Provoc.) The song is probably more well known now as a Low Budgets song. But it was a staple of the Town Managers live set in our last months together.
This version was recorded off "the Internet" back in the late 90s by a guy who lived in Connecticut and came to our shows in New London. His name was John but he went by Simon. Anyway, he bootlegged it onto one of the very first CD-Rs we ever saw. We were all very impressed that someone could (and would) make a bootleg CD of our music and so he mailed us copies of it.
Street Beat Interview - Dead Milkmen and Cyndy Drue (mp3, 37.1 MB)
Sorry for the delay in getting this month's bootleg posted. I will try to be less tardy with the April edition.
This interview was recorded from a radio broadcast on Sunday night on WMMR-FM in Philadelphia, October 2, 1994. Street Beat was the local music radio show that aired about 10 PM every Sunday and was hosted by Cyndy Drue. On this night Rodney and I were interviewed to announce the breakup of the Dead Milkmen and to promote our final show which was held at the Trocadero Theater in Philly the following Friday and Saturday nights.
Live on WXPN, 88.9 FM, February 27, 1987 - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 51,5 MB)
The Dead Milkmen Take The Airwaves, Part 2. Almost three years after our first live broadcast from Philly's WXPN radio station, we returned for another set. In late February of 1987 we were promoting an upcoming punk show at the Trocadero Theater in Philadelphia which also included F.O.D., The Electric Love Muffin, and Ruin. Our album Bucky Fellini was "in the can" but had yet to be released.
We were a bit looser for this performance than we were for the first. Also, the punk radio show had been moved from its late Sunday night slot to Friday afternoons, so this was an unusually early show for us to play.
I am embarrassed by the fact that, near the end of the set, I stopped a song twice after screwing it up. How unprofessional! I also broke a string. Back then I had only one guitar, so breaking a string meant ad lib time. Soon after this show, and before embarking on our next major tour, I would purchase a second Gibson S-G to use as a back-up.
Anyway, there are some good versions of Bucky Fellini songs on here, plus a couple Motown covers and one by Daniel Johnston. It was an odd set for us. The programs starts with Tacoland in progress. The person who taped this off the radio missed the intro.
Living Death in the Cellar of Sin (December 1981) - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 47 MB)
In their fictitious world, this 'show' was the first of the Dead Milkmen's tour of the Congo (where they were curiously famous) and was recorded for release as their next album. This recording is not exactly a live recording, however, because an overdub was made to enhance instrumentation on a couple of the songs (believe it or not). But, both the original take and the overdub were done in one take (discounting stopping the tape recorder to change instruments).
Another story about the tape: in late 90s, while gathering up my collection of the 'ficticious years' tapes, I discovered that this one would not play. It was my only copy and the tape was all jammed up. Rather than toss it out, I sent it to my friend Colin who somehow fixed it and made a copy for Jason, the Cult Leader Lettuce. Jason recently digitized his copy and posted it on the Milkmen's mesage board. Thanks to Colin Smith and Jason.
Live at Heartbeat in Oyster Bay, New York, January 23, 1987 - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 97.1 MB)
Heartbeat was a club (dance music, alternative, hair band, etc.) on the north side of Long Island (NY) that prospered in the eighties. It's not there anymore.
This decent sounding bootleg was surreptitously recorded by a member of the audience named Chris Nourcan with a Neumann KMG-4MT lavaliere microphone attached to a headband and a Sony D5 cassette deck. There is some adjusting of levels near the start. But don't worry. Into the third song the volume settles down.
By early January we had finished up recording and mixing our third album, the first of three we would record in Austin, Texas (our home away from home). That album was Bucky Fellini. It would not be released for a couple months. Many of the songs from that album that we performed in this set would have been new to this audience at the time.
Thanks to Chris who digitized the recording and sent it to me on CD-R a couple months ago.
Live at Quip's Pub, Lancaster PA, May 17, 2008 - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 55 MB)
This is relatively recent recording, indicative of my current solo acoustic shows, from Lancaster PA, about an hour and ten minutes west of my home in Philadelphia. The band Blue Jean Hackman invited me to play this already-booked Saturday night gig pretty much at the last minute, the previous Thursday. I said, why not? I was glad I did. It was a great bar and I had a fun time.
The set was recorded superbly by Paul Skozilas (of Blue Jean Hackman). Special thanks to Marshall Fischer (also of Blue Jean Hackman) for arranging everything. How many times in this blurb can I mention Blue Jean Hackman? I don't know, but I was very impressed by them. Unfortunately you won't be hearing Blue Jean Hackman on this recording. But you can check them out at their myspace page if you like.
Live at CBGB's, New York, New York, June 29, 1986 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 64 MB)
This show was part of our mini-tour opening for The Angry Samoans, if my memory serves me right. It's a pretty decent sound board mix, made on cassette, recorded at the famous CBGB's in the Bowery. (I think this is one of two times that the Dead Milkmen played there.)
Our second album Eat Your Paisley was "in the can" but not released yet. We played a fair smattering of songs from that album and from our first one, Big Lizard in my Backard.
Live at Border Books, Bryn Mawr PA, October 15, 1999 - Butterfly Joe (mp3, 65.4 MB)
Butterfly Joe was a band that existed from 1997 to 2001, though I believe we played just one show in early 2002. After 2002, we never performed again. We made one album, self-titled, which was released on the Philadelphia label, Razler Records, in 1999, and re-released the following year on Lightyear Records.
Butterfly Joe consisted of Andy Bresnan on electric guitar, trombone, accordion, recorders, and other instruments; Joe Quigley on bass; Dean "Clean" Sabatino on drums; and me on acoustic guitar, harmonica and lead vocals. I wrote all of the songs and Andy arranged them. Andy is the guy you hear near the beginning of this recording who says that it is OK to critique the sound quality.
This was an in-store live show at Borders Books & Music in Bryn Mawr, PA, not far from Philadelpia. It was a Friday night. This is the soundtrack to the Video CD made by John C. (Contarino) who filmed the show on his digital camera. Not all of the songs in the set are presented in their entirity.
Live at Bacchanal, Philadelphia PA, December 3, 1987 - Oranamental Wigwam (mp3, 48.3 MB)
Bacchanal was a little bar located at 13th and South which had live music of all sorts, from jazz to progressive rock to punk, popular in the 1980s and early 90s. It's not there now. Ornamental Wigwam was a duo consisting of Dave Blood on bass and me on guitar. We played Bacchanal several times, often with Baby Flamehead (Dean Clean's other band). This recording is of a show that was a benefit to raise money for the release of the compilation of Philly bands called You're Soaking In It for which Ornamental Wigwam contributed a song.
This set was ambiently recorded expertly by Jay Schwartz (of Secret Cinema fame) on cassette tape.
Live in Wilmington, North Carolina, June 6, 1991 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 71.1 MB)
We took a break from writing and arranging the songs for the album 'Soul Rotation' by embarking on a short tour of the south in the late spring of 1991. One of our stops was in the town of Wilmington, North Carolina at a bar whose name I cannot recall. I think it was located in a strip mall. That is where this set was recorded. Back then I had a compact cassette boom box (Panasonic, I believe) that had built-in stereo microphones which made decent ambient recordings. (It also had audio input jacks, and I used it to record rough mixes of 4-track recordings.) It was a great little system. Sadly, it got stolen along with my 4-track recorder when our van got broken into in Berklee, California in 1992, but that's another story. I think my friend Seven (of Touch Me Zoo) manned the controls for this recording. (He was a roadie on this tour.)
The first couple songs from the set are missing. Apparently they got accidently taped over with some shennanigans. (Probalby 'Tiny Town', 'VFW', 'Brat in the Frat' or some similar opening numbers.) The rest of the set is pretty lively, however, and it included our live debut of 'Shaft in Greenland'. Side two of the tape started with 'Bitchin Camaro'.
Matt, the person to whom Rodney refers at the start of the program, is Matt Dubin, our roadie and stage manager.
On the recording:
Rehearsal Demos, December 1983 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 28.8 MB)
The only labeling on this cassette says "DM Demo December 1983 (Practice Sessions)". I suspect most of these were recorded in the basement of Dean's folks' place in Sellersville, PA. We were in the habit of taking the time during rehearsals to record reference demos of songs we were working on. The recorder could have been a Panasonic boom box with built-in microphones, or a Technics cassette deck with either a Radio Shack stereo electret condensor microphone, or a pair of PZM microphones. No overdubs. These would be some of the earliest recordings of these songs.
Some of these versions appeared on the cassette-only release 'Death Rides a Pale Cow' (1984). One of these songs never made it to any album. Exact dates of the recordings are not known.
Live at Tingles' House, June 5, 2008 - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 59.6 MB)
Last June I played a house party show in west Philly which was all acoustic and a lot of fun. There was no P.A. system. Performers played in the living room, on the front porch, and in the basement. This stereo recording of my set was made by Chris Nourcan. You can hear some party chatter which the microphones were good at picking up, and also some singing along. Here is the set list:
The other performers, who were all very good, were Seth Moore, Kids are Goats, and The Uptown Welcomes. The show was organized by Justin Bender.
Ridley Park Rehearsal, December 3, 1983 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 41.7 MB)
This is the first 30 minutes of an early Dead Milkmen rehearsal, side one of a 60 minute cassette. We let the tape roll for most of the rehearsal so you get some in-between song chatter. We had had a few shows under our belt by now, but not many. This rehearsal was in Dave's parents' house in Ridley Park. I recall that they specifically asked us to rehearse there while they were away this particular weekend because they wanted to annoy their neighbors. We dutifully obliged.
The songs we play are
Live on WKDU, 91.7 FM (1997) - The Town Managers (mp3, 43.9 MB)
The Town Managers were a 3-piece band consisting of Chris Peelout (whose band name was Rick Luau), Brian Michael Sprenger (whose band name was Frick Jones) and me (my band name was Jonk Provoc). This band was the precursor to The Low Budgets and existed from 1996 to 1999. In the spring of 1997, shortly before recording our first 7-inch, The Town Managers performed on John-Paul's Sunday night show on Drexel University's radio station, WKDU. We brought a sound affects cd with us which John-Paul mixed into our set, which was broadcast live. At then end of the set Chris says "see you next year" which turned out to be true. We returned one year later to play another live set on the station.
Thanks to Brian Bubonic for digitizing the off-air recording. Thanks to C.L. Lettuce for providing the file.
The songs we play are
Live in Lawrence, Kansas (1994) - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 41.8 MB)
This was the last show The Dead Milkmen ever played in Kansas, on our very last tour together. We were out supporting Not Richard But Dick, touring with Possum Dixon. I believe this bootleg was recorded on VHS tape. The sound quality is not superb, but I don't know of any other recording from this tour, which I remember fondly. Unfortunately, the recording gets cut off before the end of the set.
Live at My House (November 26, 1983) - Side A - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 41.8 MB)
Here is a cassette boom box bootleg recorded by "that Jonny Wurster kid" at his house in Harleysville, Pennsylvania on the Saturday after Thanksgiving in November 1983. This was 4 months after our first show ever (which also happened to be in the same town, at the Harleysville Youth Center). Jonny was a friend of Dean's and he also played in a band which performed at the Youth Center show. He invited us to play a house party and we obliged. He gave me a copy of the show a few weeks later labeled "Live at My House". Side A contains an interview (not included here) plus the first part of the set. Side B, which I hope to include as next month's selection, contains the rest of the set.
Live at My House (November 26, 1983) - Side B - The Dead Milkmen (mp3, 60.6 MB)
Here is the second side, as promised, of the house show recorded by Jonny Wurster the weekend after Thanksgiving in 1983. (It was a party that I think was organized by Jonny's older brother. Jonny convinced us to play it.) Apparently we had no qualms with playing the same song twice. "Labor Day" is the second song on this side and also the last, though the tape runs out before it is finished. And we played "Don't Abort That Baby" once and then again three songs later. It sounds as if we had no set list. There's over 44 minutes of mayhem here!
Live at Insubordination Fest 2009 - The Dead Milkmen (version 2.0) (mp3, 106 MB)
This is the freshest bootleg I've ever posted on B.O.T.M. Thanks to Chris Nouryan for capturing the audio and sending it to me in a format that my ancient computer understands. This was recorded on June 26, 2009 (which, at the time of writing, was one week ago). I personally had a great time at the Insubordination Fest on Friday. (I did not attend Thursday or Saturday, sorry to say.) I saw as many bands as I could manage, and most of them I enjoyed very much. My standout favorites were The Medzingers, and Pansy Division. I'm glad we got invited to play. The set is rather long (77 minutes) and includes a two-song encore. "The Streets of Baltimore" is a country song dating from the 60s that we first heard in a bar in the former Yugoslavia (Zagreb, I think) during our first European tour in 1991.
Live at Doc's in Muncie, Indiana, 11 October 2007 - The Low Budgets (mp3, 39.7 MB)
Recorded off the sound board during the Low Budgets' U.S. "Leave Us A Loan" tour, this set lasts almost a half hour which was usually the maximum length for a Low Budgets show. Patt "Tingles" Whelan was our bass player for this leg of the tour. One thing I remember about this night was that the club gave us free pizza, and Chris found a staple in his slice. The kitchen staff apologized.
Here is the bootleg of the month:
Live at the Grape Street Pub, Philadelphia PA, June 19, 2007 - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 44.0 MB)
I showed up with my pickup-less Alvarez acoustic guitar for this gig and the sound guy told me I couldn't play it. If you're guitar doesn't have a pick-up, we can't let you play, he said. This show was arranged by my friend Dandrew's friend Chris who was not there yet, but I didn't recall him mentioning this requirement. Don't worry, the sound guy said. You can use one of our guitars which has a pick-up built in. I was not particurally thrilled with the idea of using a guitar I'd never played before, but I figured I had no choice so I agreed to play one of the club's Ibanez acoustic guitars. I made sure they were not going to charge me rent for the guitar. The sound guy told me there's no charge for using the guitar, but for 15 or 20 bucks - I can't remember the exact figure - he would record my set off the sound board and give me a CD of it after the show. I said no thanks.
My friend Marshall showed up to the show early, around sound check time, and asked me if I was going to purchase the sound board CD of the show. Back then he played in a band called Nobody Drives My Car who'd played the Grape Street Pub a few times so he knew of the deal. I told him no, I was not. He said he'd pay for the CD if I would get it made, because he'd like to have it. So, I told the sound guy I changed my mind, gave him the money Marshall gave me, and he recorded my set. So, you have Marshall Fischer to thank for this month's bootleg.
The show was a little awkward for me, though it has its good moments. I came to actually like the Ibanez guitar and later bought one for myself. I debuted the song 'Alcohol' in the set. I flubbed the lyrics to 'Sha Na Na'. Download at your own risk. I give you two options. You can have the set as one continuous file, like normal (link at top). Or you can have a zip file of the individual mp3 tracks.
The Grape Street Pub, by the way, went out of business, probably because they let people like me play there. Don't look for it.
Nutrition (Demo Recording) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 4.13 MB)
I found this recording on a cassette labeled 'Demos for Dave'. It is my original recording of the song "Nutrition" made sometime in 1984 (I am guessing) and recorded live to cassette with acoustic guitar and vocals. We pretty much used this arrangement for the final version except that Dave and I came up with improved music for the middle section and we eventually simplified the coda to use just two chords. I recall that at the time we debuted this song to Rodney and Dean we were rehearsing at Dean's parents' basement and I'm thinking it was either late winter or early spring in '84.
Live at Crash Bang Boom - Dead Milkmen (Unplugged), October 30, 2009 (mp3, 81.2 MB)
This recording was made from the audience by Brian Sprenger using a Zoom H2 flash drive stereo digital recorder at a show The Dead Milkmen played acoustically, no electric amplification (except for a small keyboard that Rodney played in a couple songs) at a punk clothing and accessories store in Philadelphia called Crash Bang Boom. This store was originally called Zipperhead and was located on South Street. It changed name and location a few years ago, now just around the corner on 4th Street. It was an intimate crowd, mostly seated on the floor, a fun little show in which some new songs were debuted.
All I Want For Christmas Is A Job - Dead Milkmen (1982 demo) (mp3, 2.34 MB)
In December of 1982, Dave Blood and I wrote and recorded an EPs worth of Christmas songs. I think we might have made special limited edition cassettes to give out as gifts that year. Or, perhaps we intended to do that, but never finished the project. I do not remember. Although Rodney was not present for these sessions, we credited the songs to The Dead Milkmen, and one of the songs would later appear on the b-side of the "Somebody Shot Sunshine" cassette which was sent to all of the Dead Milkmen Newsletter (fan club) members in December 1984.
This particular song was not included on "Sunshine". But I thought it would be appropriate for this recession-time holiday. It was recorded live to cassette at the Baker Street house in Manayunk, Philadelphia. In this era, the Dead Milkmen was a fictional band in that the Dead Milkmen Newsletter contained no true stories, and we had not yet played a real live show. Rodney was the band's drummer. We would not recruit Dean for another 6 months. This was recorded at the time we started recording songs for "A Date With The Dead Milkmen".
Live at the Chestnut Cabaret, May 11, 1988 - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 99.8 MB)
Thanks to Christian for sending in this month's bootleg. It's a live recording of a Dead Milkmen show from The Chestnut Cabaret in Philadelphia on May 11, 1988. The Chestnut Cabaret was a club with a decent sound system located at 38th just off Chestnut Street in West Philly. We played there several times in the 80s and early 90s. It eventually closed down. This particular set was recorded prior to our trip to Austin, Texas to record the 'Beelzebubba' album. You can hear us trying out some of tunes we'd record, some of which made thier live debut at this performance.
Kingsessing Sessions (1997) - The Town Managers (mp3, 18.8 MB)
I'm not sure exactly when in 1997 this was recorded, I suspect it was early in the year, but I know that it was recorded on 4-track Tascam cassette in the basement of a large house on Kingsessing Street in Philadelphia where I used to live with Chris and Brian from The Town Managers. We broke up in 1999 shortly before The Low Budgets formed. In this band Chris had the stage name Rick Luau. He played drums for the first half of our live set and played guitar and sang for the second half. I sang and played guitar for the first half, while Brian, who went by the name Frick Jones (and is now the drummer for No! Go! Tell!) played bass for the first half and drums for the second half.
In this time period we had a habit of recording every one of our rehearsals, sometimes on two-track cassette with built in mic, and sometimes - as in this case - with multiple microphones feeding into a Mackie Mixer and then mixed down to two stereo tracks of a Tascam 4-track recorder. For this session we were doing more of a recording session for practice. I don't think we had any other goals for the recording except to get a demo of some of our current songs. We had yet to release any 7 inches. (We would soon record a 7-inch e.p. for Shredder Records, followed by a second 7-inch e.p. for Marigold Records.)
We recorded one set of stereo tracks for the instruments and then did a second pass to record the vocals, also mixed through the Mackie mixer, to two stereo tracks. We all wore headphones and each had a microphone for the vocal recording and ran through all of the songs "live". It sounds like we were goofing off quite a bit. We mixed it down to DAT as one long track not bothering to pause between songs. Our goofing off rendered the recording ultimately useless as a demo, though it was a fun process for us. Here it is for those brave or curious enough to download it.
Live in Hamburg Germany, February 19, 1991 - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 109 MB)
This is a recording from the Milkmen's first of two visits to Europe. This particular trip started during the first Gulf War, in the middle of winter, following a long North American tour which had ended before Christmas in support of our album 'Metaphysical Grafitti'. I don't know of any other recordings of this tour. This was sent to me on CD-R format by Markus Weiler.
Street Beat Interview - 1987 - Dead Milkmen and Cindi Drue (mp3, 27.4 MB)
In the spring of 1987, during the week that the Dead Milkmen's third album, Bucky Fellini, was released, we made an appearance on WMMR's local music program "Street Beat" to promote the album. We were guests on this program about a half dozen times over the years. (The program no longer is aired.) It was basically an interview-style DJ show focusing on local music. WMMR is (or was) the local commercial FM rock station.
Thanks to Christian for recording the program and providing it to me in a digitized format.
Live on WMMS FM (Cleveland OH) - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 24 MB)
Last month I presented an interview on Philadelphia's WMMR (FM rock station). This month I figure I should go one step forward in the alphabet of radio stations and present an interview of the Dead Milkmen on Cleveland's WMMS (FM rock station). This interview occurred during our 1992 U.S. tour for the album 'Soul Rotation'. We'd recently returned from our second tour of Europe. For this tour we brought along some acoustic instruments so that we could perform live at record stores and in radio interviews.
This particular interview has been traded on the Internet broken into individual files of songs and interview segments. It was brought to my attention by Cult Leader Lettuce. I have attempted to put the segments in their original playing order. Also, I tried with no luck to find a copy that does not have a glitch in the song 'At The Moment'. I have a feeling this occurred during the original digital encoding and I suspect there is a glitch-free version out there somewhere. (If anyone has a version without the glitch, let me know. Email me at joseph.genaro AT gmail.com. Thanks!)
Live at Wunderkind, Albuquerque, New Mexico - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3, 64 MB)
Dan "The Bassturd" Butler recorded this show (or most of it - the recording ends about 46 minutes into the set) using his compact Sony cassette recorder in Alburquerue, New Mexico where we played at the all ages show space known as Wunderkind during our southwest United States tour with Lord Grunge, also known as the 'Huge Bicycle Tour'.
Although I played solo without a band for this tour, Dan often joined me on accordion for a couple songs ('Greenworld', and a cover of Daniel Johnston's 'True Love Will Find You In the End') and also provided backing beats for two of the songs ('The Thing That Only Eats Hippies' and 'Sex Sting'). Chris Peelout (Low Budgets, Gone Wrong, The Town Managers) provided backing beats for another song ('Fancy Walls').
Live at the Art Bar - Frick and Jonk (mp3, 10.5 MB)
Recorded on cassette from a table in the audience of the short-lived Art Bar in Philadelphia's Chinatown in February 1998, this month's bootleg features one of the very few live performances by The Cheesies (though at the time we billed ourselves as Frick and Jonk; we did not change our name to The Cheesies until we were mixing our first album a few years later). Frick, a/k/a Brian, played bass and sang backing vocals while I played guitar and sang. The Art Bar was an odd second story bar that featured live nude models for artists to draw as well as live music. I recall that the show we played was Valentine's Day themed. The friend with whom we entrusted the cassette recorder forget to press the 'record' button and missed the first part of the set. The songs that got captured were 'The Puking Song', 'Hard On' (warning: sexually explicity lyrics) and 'Punk Rock Girl'.
Live at Rhino's in Bloomington, Indiana - Joe Jack Talcum & The Powders (mp3, 71 MB)
The Bootleg of the Month turns five years old this month. To celebrate, here is yet another bootleg of a live show. This one is from this past April when I toured the midwest with Samuel Locke-Ward and the Boo Hoos. Sam and two of the Boo Hoos served as my backing band which I named The Powders. We played 14 shows in two weeks. This particular show was at the midway point of the tour, at an all ages club in Bloomington, Indiana. Unfortunately, the show got off to a rough start with some low-end acoustic feedback. But it improved after I switched from acoustic to electric guitar. The recording was made directly to a laptop from the mixing board and then burned to a CD by the sound guy for us to take with us after the show. Sounds like it was recorded a little 'hot', but I tried to adjust the volume down before converting the file to mp3.
Bass & Backing Vocals: Rachel Feldman
Drums: Grace Locke-Ward
Organ & Backing Vocals: Samuel Locke-Ward
Guitar & Vocals: Joe Jack Talcum
TV Mystery and Baby Won't You Help Me Tie My Shoes - Touch Me Zoo - 1994 Rehearsal (mp3, 2.2 MB & 2.9 MB)
This month's bootleg is presented in two separate mp3 files and consists of two songs recorded live during an early 1994 Touch Me Zoo rehearsal. Back then, Touch Me Zoo had just expanded from a two-piece recording project, started by Seven Morris and me, into a four-piece live performing band with the addition of bass player John Sokolis and drummer Brian Sprenger. TV Mystery is a song that Seven and I wrote. A full band version of the song was released on our Moon Dog Will Die cassette. Baby Won't You Help Me Tie My Shoes is a John Sokolis-penned number which did not see the light of day on any 'official' Touch Me Zoo release.
Street Beat with Cyndy Drue - 1988 - Interview with Dave Blood and Dean Clean of the Dead Milkmen (mp3, 27.7 MB)
Here is another Street Beat interview. This one is from early 1988 and features Dean Clean and Dave Blood upon The Dead Milkmen's return home from the tour to promote 'Bucky Fellini'. Street Beat was a show on local rock station WMMR-FM which aired every Sunday night with DJ Cyndy Drue playing and promoting local music and interviewing local musicians. This interview was edited (not by me) to remove all of the non-Milkmen related music. Dave and Dean provide some interesting details of the recent tours. Thanks to Christian for providing me with the recording.
Live In The Studio - Outtakes - Joe Jack Talcum with Hugh Hamilton (zip file containing mp3s, 16.1 MB)
These four songs were recorded during the 'Live in the Studio' sessions on a cold night in February 2009 in a studio in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, but were not included in the final compact disc release. Here they are, zipped up into one file for easy downloading.
Hugh Hamilton played banjo and provided backing vocals on You Ain't Goin' Nowhere, a cover of a Bob Dylan song, and slide guitar on Life Is Shit and The Guitar Song, covers of Dead Milkmen songs. I played the cavaquinho and harmonica on Watching Scotty Die, another Dead Milkmen song, the set closer. The songs were recorded by Andrew Jacobs before a studio audience.
Live at the Mill, Iowa City, Iowa - Joe Jack Talcum & the Powders (zip file, 105 MB)
Happy new year! A few months ago I posted a board recording of a Joe Jack Talcum and the Powders show from our April tour which sounded terribly blown out. This month I'm presenting a show from our October tour which actually sounds great. It was recorded by Taper Tim at the kickoff show of our tour at Iowa City's The Mill on October 8, 2010. For your convenience all of the songs have been separated into their own tracks as mp3 files and zipped into one file for easy downloading. If you don't like a song you can easily skip it or delete it. Thanks to Taper Tim for recording the show, and for Samuel Locke-Ward for providing me with the files.
Nine New Sins - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 files, 10.4 MB & 10 MB)
This month's bootleg, a digital transfer of the 1982 cassette-only e.p. Nine New Sins is served in two files, one for each side of the tape. This extremely limited edition, hand-packaged e.p. is from the "ficticious years" of the Milkmen, before the band existed as a performing combo. It was recorded sometime during my winter break from college (1981-82). Rodney was my songwriting collaborater for about half of these songs. He also performed on the recordings he helped write. (Some of these songs were later recorded and performed by the real Dead Milkmen.) These recordings precede my first meeting of Dave Blood by about a month. I would meet him after returning to college from my break. Also, Rodney and I were soon to see Dean perform in the band Narthex at the famous Landmark Tavern in Philadelphia, though we would not know at the time that he would eventually become the real Dead Milkmen's drummer.
Nine New Sins - Side 1
It's the Guitar (The Guitar Song) - Demo Recording (mp3 file, 5.26 MB)
This is the demo recording I made for the song I originally called "It's the Guitar" and would eventually become "The Guitar Song" on the Dead Milkmen's Beelzebubba album. I recorded the song to 2-track cassette with two overdub passes for keyboards. Later I rearranged the song adding a third verse and shortening the solo.
The Man Who Rides the Bus - Demo Recording (mp3 file, 6.07 MB)
This is my demo recording of the song 'The Man Who Rides the Bus' which the Dead Milkmen recorded for the album Stoney's Extra Stout (Pig) in November of 1994. I recorded this demo after Dean gave me the lyrics and asked if I could come up with music.
Eat Your Paisley - Demo Recordings - The Dead Milkmen (zipped mp3 files, 39.5 MB)
In 1986 we used Dean's Fostex to record 4-track cassette demos of the songs for 'Eat Your Paisley' (excluding Two Feet off the Ground and The Fez which at the time had become staples of our live show). There are a couple songs included here which did not make it to the 'Paisely' sessions: Surfin' Cow which wasn't quite ready but would be recorded in a more structured arrangement for 'Bucky Felini', and Dance With Me, an older song.
These are encoded in 192K mp3. If you are looking for FLAC files (218 MB zipped), go here.
Statues of Crocodiles - Demo Recording (mp3 file, 4.73 MB)
This was recorded by me sometime in 1987, when I lived on Chelten Avenue, as a demo for the Dead Milkmen. Rodney wrote the lyrics first and I put them to music. This was at the time we were writing songs for the album that became Beelzebubba. We had plenty of songs and this one did not make the cut.
Live at Rhizome Space - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 file, 42.6 MB)
This show took place early on a Sunday afternoon in a space known as the Rhizome, a storefront in Rock Island, Illinois, in front of a small, polite audience of teenagers and young adults. I was on tour with The Bassturd and Samuel Locke-Ward versus Darren Brown at the time. Earlier that day we stopped by the Daytrotter studios and recorded a session, after having driven from Chicago where we had a late night gig on Saturday. I was working on about two hours of sleep and was loaded up on coffee at the time. (You can hear that Daytrotter session here, if you like.)
Dan Butler recorded this live performance on one side of a 60 minute cassette tape. The songs are:
Blow Up Your Stereo (Instrumental Mix) - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 file, 4.7 MB)
This track is from the summer of 1996. If I remember correctly it evolved during a Philadelphia heatwave similar to the one experienced recently. A vocal version of this track, with a different mix, was released on the Touch Me Zoo cassette Blow Up Your Stereo in the autumn of '96. There are no live drums on this track. It was mainly a collaboration between Seven Morris and me.
Not Richard But Dick Demos - Volume 1 - The Dead Milkmen (zipped mp3 files, 19.3 MB)
Back in the spring of 1993 The Dead Milkmen recorded a series of demos in my basement on a Tascam 8-track cassette recorder borrowed from my brother. About half of the songs were re-recorded in the summer of that year at Q-Division Studio in Boston, Massacusetts for the Not Richard But Dick album. One of the demos, a cover of the Yardbird's song "Shapes of Things" found its way onto our Now We Are 10 CD which was sold via mail order through our Newzletter. The other songs from the basement sessions were rarely ever heard again. I've collected a group of them here for your listening pleasure. (One of the six songs in this set actually was re-recorded for Not Richard But Dick which quickly vanished into obscurity. The other five vanished into obscurity completely on their own.)
This month's bootleg is also available as FLAC files zipped up (89 MB) if that's your cup of tea.
The Salamander Sessions - Summer 1981 - The Dead Milkmen (zipped mp3 files, 45.2 MB)
During the summer between my freshman and sophomore years at college I lived with my folks in Wagontown and got a job as busboy in a Ramada Inn restaurant in nearby Downingtown. In my spare time I made recordings in my bedroom, often alone and sometimes with my friends Garth or Rodney. I recently stumbled across some cassette source tapes from this period, labeled "Studio Tape 2" and "Studio Tape 3". My method of "multi-track" recording back then involved playing back the original base recording from one cassette deck into another deck which had a line-in and a microphone-in which could be mixed. That mixed signal would be recorded as the overdubbed track. If I wanted more overdubs, I repeated the process. I had to be careful to get the right levels during the overdub recording because that would be the final mix. Usually I would keep the original take of a song, and the final overdubbed version. Most of the in-between takes would be dubbed over to save tape. This is how I recorded all of the early fictional Dead Milkmen albums. "Studio Tape 2" and "Studio Tape 3" contain some original takes, marked 'take 1', 'take 2' etc. followed by the final overdubbed versions of whichever take was deemed best.
Anyway, after reviewing these "Studio Tapes" I realized that many of these songs were ones that were released on the long lost "The Last Known Address of Jonathan Salamander" album. So, for this month's bootleg I decided to digitize some of those songs and present them to you as the Salamander Sessions.
2,000 Bong-Hits From Home - The Sunflower Children of God (zipped mp3 files, 35 MB)
I found this tape in the same box as last month's bootleg. This is Rodney's brilliant retort to my "Blackness" cassette. I have nothing to do with this recording. I am under the impression that this is a solo project by Rondey Anonymous, though there are band members (such as Mad Donna and G. Zuzz) listed on the insert. It was recorded around the time he started playing keyboards in the Dead Milkmen, which was for the "Beelzebubba" tour. The Dead Milkmen could not help but record one of these songs for the album "Metaphysical Graffiti".
Bong-Hits B Side - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 files, 49.5 MB)
I flipped last month's bootleg tape over to see if there was anything on the unmarked b-side. Indeed there was. It sounds to me like a recording from a rehearsal for the Beelzebubba album. The acoustics make me think this was recorded at 1020 RPM, which was on Delaware Avenue just north of the Barbary. (It's not there anymore.) Probably a boom box or portable tape player recording using the built-in mic.
Blast Ignite! Live at Teri's Bar - Blast Ignite (zipped mp3 files, 51.2 MB)
This month's bootleg is the second one which features an artist other than me or the Dead Milkmen. It is a live recording of the admirable debut show of Blast Ignite! which is the one-man musical project of Dandrew, the bass player for the Dead Milkmen, and former member of such illustrious bands as The Low Budgets, No! Go! Tell!, and Farquar Muckenfuss.
The performance was recorded by Marshall Fischer, with a hand-held Tascam stereo digital recorder. Jason Seiple added some post-production processing to the recording. The entire performance is included in 17 mp3 files zipped up for your downloading convenience.
Here is the track listing:
1 - (intro)
2 - I Don't Wanna Spend My Time
3 - Theme for a Night Owl
4 - (This Used to Be Called) Penns' Woods
5 - What Do Other People?
6 - Irene, I Reckon
7 - Angel in My Bed
8 - For Caylee
9 - For Taylor
10 - I Forgot My Pen
11 - Well, that's What They Said
12 - The Animals are Pissed
13 - Song about Songs about George Bush
14 - 2nd Place in the Human Race
15 - Suicide Blog
16 - I Like Watermelons
17 - Fantastic Voyage (David Bowie)
You can also see a video of the Blast Ignite! performance on Vimeo as posted by Breathmint. While your there, you can watch my own performance from the same Teri's Bar show.
Gaper's Delay - Rejected Low Budgets Demo (zipped mp3 files, 1.4 MB)
In the summer of 2005, Chris Peelout, the founder of the Low Budgets, gave me a few pages of lyrics and asked me if I could come up with music for them. I dutifully cranked out tunes for three of the songs, two of which wound up on the next Low Budgets album, Leave Us A Loan. The third did not quite make it, but I present it to you now as the Bootleg of the Month. This is an alternate, rejected version of "Gaper's Delay" which I demo'd on August 1, 2005. The lyrics are by Chris Peelout. The music is by me. (The song titled "Gaper's Delay" on Leave Us A Loan uses these lyrics but the music on that version is by Chris and is completely different.)
Jiffy Squid Rough Mixes - Jiffy Squid (zipped mp3 files, 32.8 MB)
In August of 1993 an aspiring artist and high school student pen pal of mine named Gabe Taylor, whom I met at a Dead Milkmen show in Portland, Oregon, paid me a visit in Philadelphia after attending a summer session at an art school in New York City. He had a week to hang out in Philly before heading back to Portland to start his senior year in high school. He wanted to write and record an album with me during his week-long visit. (Looking back, it seems like a rather ambitious undertaking.) I did not have any job then, except for playing in the Dead Milkmen, and I had blocked out the week to spend with Gabe, except for a Milkmen show in D.C. It turned out to be a very rainy August week and we spent almost every waking hour writing songs and recording them as soon as they were written. What you have here are the songs that would comprise side 1 of the finished project, in their original or "rough" mixes which I made shortly after Gabe's departure. After returning home, Gabe felt that the album needed more songs. So we collaborated on a few more songs via phone and snail mail which I recorded on my own, and collaborated on final mixes by sending cassettes through the mail. (It ended up taking a lot longer than a week to finish the project.) Most of those songs ended up on the second side of the album, which also contained some of the noisier, more experimental tracks had we recorded together, not included in this set. We issued the album on cassette sometime in the fall to friends.
Live Covers and Various Others - Dead Milkmen (and Related Bands) (zipped mp3 files, 145 MB)
Sometime in 1998 John C., the proprietor of the Dead Milkmen Freeservers website, issued this bootleg on the budding CD-R format. It's an odd collection of live recordings of the Dead Milkmen playing cover songs, plus some various Dead Milkmen off-shoot bands playing cover songs, and in some cases the Dead Milkmen covering Dead Milkmen songs and various off-shoot bands performing originals. It's topped off with some pre-Dead Milkmen show hand held cassette recorded commentary. John converted the CD to mp3 format and recently offered it for download. He posted an official track list on his site. I will augment the track listing below.
Live at the Philadelphia F/M Fest, World Cafe Live, Philadelphia PA September 24, 2010 - Dead Milkmen (mp3, 77.5 MB)
Hats off to Chris Nourcan for providing another well recorded Milkmen bootleg. He was in the balcony of the World Cafe Live for this excellent recording which took place during the Philadelphia F/M (Film and Music) Festival back in 2010.
1999 Demos - The Town Managers
Pop Punk Song (mp3, 3.6 MB)
Where Does the End Start? (mp3, 2.7 MB)
Settle Down (mp3, 3.7 MB)
For Micah (mp3, 4.7 MB)
I found this month's bootleg on a DAT tape that was simply labeled "Town Managers 1999". Turns out these songs were recorded on a Tascam 4-track in our basement-garage rehearsal space in 1999, the last year we would be together as a band. You might recognize 'Settle Down' as a Low Budgets song. It was a staple of the early Budgets sets in 2000.
Each song is an mp3 that can be downloaded separately using the links above.
The Town Managers were:
Rick Luau (Chris Peelout) - drums/guitar
Frick Jones (Brian Michael) - bass/drums
Jonk Provoc (Joe Jack Talcum) - guitar/bass
'Smile' Outtakes - Joe Jack Talcum (Butterfly Joe) (zip file containing mp3s, 13.9 MB)
This month's offering is comprised of songs recorded during the 'Smile' solo home recording sessions which were rightfully deemed not worthy of inclusion on the album Smile. There are three songs:
Live at the Rock Shop, July 14, 2012 - Talcum Powder Trio (mp3 93.8 MB)
Here is a recent recording of one of the two July shows I played with the Talcum Powder Trio (Dan Stevens on bass and Marshall Fischer on drums). This set was recorded at The Rock Shop in Brooklyn, New York where we shared the bill with Toby Goodshank and The Bastards of Fate. Toby provided backing vocals for some of our tunes, as did Dan. The recording was made by Marshall on his Tascam digital stereo recorder which he placed near the sound booth.
† Toby Goodshank - backing vocals
Random Rare E.P. - Touch Me Zoo (zip file of mp3s 19.9 MB)
Touch Me Zoo is a band that, while together, released albums only on D.I.Y. cassette format, home duplicated with photo-copied inserts. After issuing about a half dozen of these albums, the band disbanded. Shortly thereafter three "Ultra Rare" cassette compilations were released. As far as I know, this particular set of songs, which I culled from DAT mixes made in the nineties, contains only one song that saw the light of day on one of those "Ultra Rare" releases. The other three tracks have not been issued (until now) and so can probalby be considered super ultra rare.
Folk Jams, October 1983 - Dave Blood, Joe Jack Talcum, and Rodney Anonymous (mp3 13.7 MB)
One weekend in late October of 1983, the Dead Milkmen had a show in barn which was in the backyard of a house somewhere in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. (This was where the self-released live tape "Funky Farm" was recorded.) The recording we have here was made on that same weekend, if the label on the cassette is accurate. I do not recall making this recording, or the reason that it was made, but I am guessing from the ambience, radio-station interference, and the between-song chatter, that it was recorded in my bedroom in the house where I lived on the eve of the barn show. It is likely that both Dave and Rodney were spending the night at my place for convenience sake so we could all ride up together to Dean's place in Bucks County in the morning.
The tape starts with Dave and me performing acoutsic renditions of Watching Scotty Die and Wisconsin. Then Rodney arrives, bounding up the stairs, sees that we are recording and insists on an impromtu songwriting jam. What follows are two ad-libbed tunes for which I attempt to come up with a coherent chord progression while Rodney spouts rhymes. I am naming these songs Folk Song for the 60s and Something Unique. After that I try to remember the chords of an Ornamental Wigwam song before Rodney declares the recording a waste of tape.
That waste of tape (a 30 minute Concertape from RadioShack, 15 minutes per side) was minimally labeled and thrown into a box and probably not heard until my recent discovery of it almost 29 years later.
Consumer 925 - Consumer 925 (zip file of mp3s - 45 MB)
Back in early days of 1999 I planned to release an album of ambient music under the moniker "Consumer 925". My idea was to release the album digitally on the web in the Real Audio format. (The MP3 format was just starting to become known, though, and would quickly become wildly popular and obliterate Real Audio.) I purchased the consumer925.com domain name and secured web hosting space (which over time became the space for this very jacktalcum.com site) but the project fizzled out after I lost interest...
While I abondoned the idea of releasing the streaming album, I did compile an audio CD-R album of some of the tracks I recorded. I filed it away in one of those slip-case CD books and forgot about it until I recently stumbled upon it searching for anything worth preserving...
All of these recordings (including the samples and loops) were made by me except for a couple samples in the track named "Part 9 (News)" which were recorded by my friend Seven Morris. That track was recorded in Seven's home which at the time was near Newport News, Virginia. All of the others were recorded in Philadelphia.
Live at the Lost Horizon - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 102 MB)
This month's bootleg was recorded on September 21, 1986 at a Dead Milkmen show at The Lost Horizon in Syracuse, New York. If my memory is correct, this show was part of a shorter tour which preceded the longer U.S. tour that landed us in San Marcos, Texas for the recording of the album "Bucky Fellini". We were supporting the Fever/Restless album Eat Your Paisley but there is a generous portion of Bucky songs in the set including the lead-off song, "Going to Graceland".
Thanks to Neil Aycock for suggesting this bootleg and for sending me the recording.
Live at the Middle East (Cambridge MA) - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 111 MB)
Chris Nourcan's recording of the Dead Milkmen's June 20, 2010 show at the Cambridge, Massachusetts club The Middle East is this month's bootleg. This was one of a handful of shows we played after the release of our ninth studio album, "The King in Yellow". The link above will get you the entire show as one continuous mp3. The link below will get you the songs separated into individual mp3 files zipped up.
DM_CambridgeMA_06-20-2010_MP3.zip (189 MB)
Thanks to Chris Nourcan for the recording, and Cult Leader Lettuce for the digital file processing.
Set list (81 minutes):
You Blew My Mind When You Read My Mind - Touch Me Zoo (demo) (mp3 - 3.01 MB)
This is a demo that I recorded with Seven back in 1992 for our Touch Me Zoo project. It's an unpolished song that was never quite finished and never got beyond this state. It uses the word "Valentine" so I figured that makes it appropriate for February. Seven played bass and I played guitar and sang.
Pay No Mind - Touch Me Zoo (Beck cover) (mp3 - 4.37 MB)
This Beck cover is credited to Touch Me Zoo and was recorded in 1995, but I believe the only people involved in the recording were Brian Michael and me. Brian sang the lead and played percussion while I played guitar and provided the horrible guitar solo. We recorded several cover songs in this time period, between the first and second full-band line-ups of Touch Me Zoo, using a Tascam cassette 4-track recorder.
Live at Raji's - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 74 MB)
Recorded live February 12, 1986 in Hollywood, California at Raji's. Set list:
Moon Dog Will Die - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 - 40.2 MB)
By special request of John Hussy, this month's bootleg is the Touch Me Zoo cassette "Moon Dog Will Die" recorded and released in 1994 to serve as a demo to get some live shows and possible record label interest. (We got several live shows from the demo, but no label interest.) Touch Me Zoo was originally formed as a recording project by Seven Morris and me in 1991, and became a live band with the addition of John (bass) and Brian (drums) in 1993. This is the first tape we issued as a band. It was recorded on TASCAM 4-track cassette in the basement of my Buckingham Place apartment (the same place where the Milkmen practiced and recorded demos in the 90's). John Sokolis sang most of the backing vocals and I sang the leads. The program was designed to fit on one side of a blank 60 minute cassette.
The link above gets you the cassette as it would play, and you can use that link to stream the whole program. Or, if you prefer, you can use this link to download a zipped file of the individual songs.
Live at Tidball's - The Low Budgets (mp3 - 29.6 MB)
On November 2, 2007, The Low Budgets stopped at Bowling Green, Kentucky to play at a bar called Tidball's as part of our national tour to support our third full-length album ("Leave Us Alone"). This would be our final U.S. tour. The show was captured on a portable cassette recorder. Listening back, I'm surprised at how fast we played these songs, compared to the album versions. It sounds as if we were very eager to get through the slight 10-song set which clocks in at under 22 minutes. For this leg of the tour, the Low Budgets had our original line-up: Chris Peelout on guitar and vocals, Steve Levandoski on drums, Dandrew on bass, and me on organ and vocals.
The complete set of Low Budgets studio recordings, plus some other unreleased recordings and live shows (including another show from this same tour) can be had for free from the Low Budgets' Bandcamp page.
(I Left My Heart in) San Francisco (early demo) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 6.47 MB)
I stumbled upon this month's bootleg while cataloging one of the numerous inadequately labeled cassettes in my shoeboxed collection. This recording of "San Francisco", which first came out on my Blackness cassette (released under the moniker Jasper Thread) in 1989, and was later released on the Butterfly Joe cd, is an earlier version which has slightly different lyrics and arrangement. I think this was recorded in 1988 (or possibly late 1987) while I lived in the Germantown section of Philadelphia in an apartment above a wood shop.
Live at Bacchanal, June 20, 1985 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 44.9 MB)
Here we have a recording from the infamous and almost forgotten Bacchanal, a punk-friendly bohemian artist bar that was located at 13th & South Streets, which was at the time not the best of Philadelphia neighborhoods, an area of frequent muggings. We played here often, usually playing two sets with one other band who also played two sets, sandwiched between each other. On this particular night we were celebrating the release of our first album, "Big Lizard in My Backyard", though due to some distribution SNAFU it would not be available in any Philly stores until about a week later which was about the time we left for our first national tour.
Rodney's parents were in attendance for our first set, but what you have here is our more raucous, loose second set. I believe it was recorded on a boombox. Here is the set list:
Folk Jams, October 1983, Part Two - Dave Blood & Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 15.5 MB)
This the the unlabeled second side of the "Folk Jams" cassette, the first side of which was featured in last October's Bootleg of the Month. I assume that this is a continuation of that session, though it could also have preceded that session. In this recording we folk-ified five Dead Milkmen songs.
Dead Milkmen LIVE @ The Note West in Chester, Pennsylvania, September 14, 2013 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3s zipped - 77.3 MB)
Here is a bootleg of a recent Dead Milkmen show. It was thoughtfully recorded at The Note in West Chester, PA last month on a stereo digital recorder by Marshall Fischer and lovingly processed by archivist Cult Leader Lettuce (a/k/a Jason Seiple). There are 32 songs in this set, which includes the encore featuring a guest appearance from Ex-Friends' Audrey Crash.
Purgatory Beat - The Dead Milkmen (mp3s zipped - 41.1 MB)
This is an album from the "fictitious" years, which was released on cassette in 1982 in a very limited hand-made edition. Most of the songs were recorded in the summer and fall of 1982 after Dave Blood and I moved into a house on Baker Street in the Manayunk section of Philadelphia less than a year before Dean would join the band and make it "real". A couple of the songs were taken from previously released cassette albums. (Special thanks to Dandrew for rescuing an original copy of the cassette.)
Here is the bootleg of the month:
Outtake Mixes - The Low Budgets (mp3s zipped - 14.2 MB)
These rejected mixes are from the recording session for the Low Budgets second full-length studio album, "Aim Low, Get High". At the time the album was being compiled these mixes were not deemed good enough for one reason or another. The balance of instruments may have needed tweaked or perhaps the vocals were too loud in some of them. To my present-day ears, however, all of these mixes sound good. Judge for yourself if you like. You can get mp3 copies of the final released mixes for this album (and all of the other Low Budgets albums) for free at The Low Budgets Bandcamp site. The album was recorded by Brian McTear at Miner Street Studios while it was still at its Manayunk, Philadelphia location.
Live in Indianapolis, March 2, 1986 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 98.6 MB)
I recently received a DVD labeled "Dead Milkmen - 1986-03-02 Indianapolis Highschool Gym" from Chris Buly. The picture quality is not great, but the audio is alright and the show is not half bad. I believe the venue is actually a bar called The Patio, rather than a highschool gymnasium. I ripped the audio from the DVD for this month's bootleg. The set features songs from our first two albums, Big Lizard in My Backyard and the very soon-to-be-released Eat Your Paisley as well as some cover tunes that frequented our sets of the period.
UPDATE: Dean's tour diary confirms that the venue was an 'old high school gym'. It was not The Patio, which is a club we would play on a later tour. I decided to dig out my old tour diary as well and sure enough there is an entry for March 2, 1986. The venue was called "The Compound". I described it as a "community-building sort of place with a stage and tiled basketball court".
More Kingsessing Sessions (1998) - The Town Managers (zip file of mp3s - 23.7 MB)
Four years ago I posted a set of Town Managers songs recorded in the basement of the house we shared on West Philly's Kingsessing Avenue in the late 1990s. That was just one of several sessions we recorded there. We typically recorded a set of songs, with all of the intstruments and vocals mic'd and mixed through a Mackie 12-channel board, with Alesis and Yamaha affects racks, to two tracks of a Tascam 4-track cassette recorder. Then, after a short break to imbibe of various alcoholic and herbal substances we would would record a stereo overdub on the remaining two tracks of the Tascam through the same Mackie board. Here is another one of those sessions. This one was engineered by Vern Zaborowski and was mixed down to stereo cassette (rather than DAT). Also, a keyboard part was overdubbed along with vocals on one of the tracks. There is no date on the tape but I am guessing it was recorded in the early part of 1998. The songs are
Rick Luau (a/k/a Chris Peelout) on guitar, vocals and *drums
Frick Jones (a/k/a Brian Michael) on drums, vocals and *bass
Jonk Provoc (a/k/a Joe Jack Talcum) on bass, *vocals and *guitar
What Did Her Autopsy Reveal and Photograph - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3s - 8.86 MB)
This month's bootleg was submitted by Aaron Nevins who hosts the monthly HANG ON with Aaron Nevins, "The comdey talk show you can talk to" live at the Adrienne Theater in Philadelphia. I was a guest on the show last August (when it was at the Plays & Players Theater) during which I performed these two songs. If you ever get the chance, check out HANG ON live, in person. It's a fine mix of improvisational comedy and talk show with audience participation at an affordable price.
Demo for Dave (1985) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 22.7 MB)
This is from a cassette marked only Demo for Dave. It contains a few sub-par, odd songs that I suppose I played for Dave at one point. My memory is foggy, though listening back to this I'm fairly certain it was recorded at the 9th Street apartment I shared with Rodney, probably from the spring of 1985. I believe Jesus Outside was my attempt to put lyrics to the song that bacame Happy Is. Listen at your own risk!
Live on WKDU - 8/8/1998 - The Town Managers (mp3 - 89.5 MB)
This is a recording of the second (and final) live radio show that the Town Managers performed at Drexel University's station WKDU, 91.7 FM. This set is indicative of the shows we played on our summer tour to Michigan and back in the previous weeks. Vern Zabrowsky, who toured with us, played bass on the first song, "Model's Left Tit". He is referred to by Chris (Rick Luau) as Steve Gutenberg throughout the program.
Live on WKDU 91.7 FM in Philadelphia - 5/19/1999 - Butterfly Joe (zip file containing mp3s - 16.0 MB)
Less than a year after The Town Managers performed live on WKDU, a recording of which was featured in last month's bootleg, I returned to that radio station with another band, Buttefly Joe, to perform a short live set, which is this month's bootleg. Normally the band was a four-piece, but our bass player, Joe Quigley, was preoccupied so we performed this set as a trio. Andy Bresnan played accordian and recorder, I played acoustic guitar, and Dean Sabatino played what sounds to me like body percussion. The songs are
Live at Warsaw - June 14, 2014 - Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 89.5 MB)
This hour-long set was recorded at the recent Northside Fest in Brooklyn, the Dead Milkmen's third visit to the Warsaw, on a Tascam portable digital recorder placed at the sound board. Listen at your own risk. Setlist:
Interview on WKDU, October 21, 2008 - Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 41.8 MB)
In October of 2008 while The Dead Milkmen were preparing for our "reunion" shows in Philadelphia and Texas we were interviewed in our Manayunk rehearsal space by a DJ from Drexel U's college radio station, WKDU. This is a recording of that interview as it was aired a couple days later on WKDU 91.7 FM. Topics discussed during the 30-minute talk include the reason for our reunion, a collaboration with Schooly-D that never got off the ground, the inspiration behind the pork sausage song, and other pressing subjects.
Live at The Brighton Bar, Long Brach NJ - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 65.4 MB)
I played a couple New Jersey shows on Memorial Day weekend back in 2009, including this one at Long Branch's Brighton Bar recorded by Charles Monroe of The Sex Zombies. Acclaimed Asbury Park musician and author Joe Harvard accompanied me on lap steel guitar for a couple songs, "Punk Rock Girl", and "The Punking Song" in the middle of the set. Here is the set list:
Live at Harlyesville PA, July 23, 1983 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 65.4 MB)
This is the debut show of The Dead Milkmen as a real band. It took place in the Lower Salford Youth Center in Harleysville, PA. We were booked there by Dean's friend, Jonny Wurster, who I believe also played in a band that night. (Dan Mapp, who would later become our tour manager, played bass for The Singles who were also on the bill.) Jonny is the person who introduces us.
The recording starts with us at home before leaving for the show with a little introduction to the event.
Thanks to Mike Ace for the archival cassette recording.
I Hate Living in the Suburbs - Ken Wadsworth III and the Wadsies (mp3 - 4.31 MB)
Late one night while at our house on Baker Street in Manayunk, Rodney called in to a radio talk show with a song, as Kens Wadsworth. Dave Blood and I, and whoever else was there, were the Wadsies. (This recording is undated, but it is likely from late 1983.)
Thanks to Mike Ace for the archival cassette recording.
The Christmas Waltz (Demo) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 7.98 MB)
A home demo recording of the song that appears in studio form on the Comfort and Joy holiday song compilation album is this month's bootleg.
Also, here are some links to past Christmas-themed bootlegs and songs, for your holiday listening convenience:
Santa Take Me Off That List - Dandrew and Joe
All I Want for Christmas is a Job - Dave Blood and Joe
It's Time for Christmas Time - The Cheesies (Brian and Joe)
Ridley Rough Cuts - The Dead Milkmen (zipped mp3s - 58.5 MB)
Ridley Rough Cuts is a cassette recording of the rehearsal for the first Dead Milkmen show in the summer of 1983. There was a period of two weeks between Dean Clean joining the band and the show, which took place at a youth center in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The rehearsal took place during the weekend of July 16, 1983 in the living room of Dave Blood's parents' house in the suburban Philadelphia town of Ridley Park, Pennylvania, hence the title of the cassette. Dean made these recordings so that he could become more familiar with the songs before the show. Rodney was not at the rehearsal and, in fact, would not meet Dean until the day of the show.
Thanks to Mike Ace for the archival cassette recording.
Lovers Attack the World (demo) - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 - 5.35 MB)
This never-finished song was written by me and recorded by Seven Morris in an empty bedroom in a house in West Philly back in July of 1994. Seven was living on Farragut Terrace at the time and for some reason, I think for rennovations, one of the bedrooms on the top floor of the house was completely empty. When I was over for a visit one evening Seven thought it would be cool to make a recording in the empty room to take advantage of the awesome room sound it had. The freshest song I had was this one. It only had lyrics for the chorus but we recorded it anyway. Seven used a Tascam 488 8-track cassette recorder with two microphones which he judiciously placed in the room. I recall that he changed the microphone placement for each overdub. When I recorded the vocal for the chorus, the microphones were set up in a far corner of the room. Seven played the pretty guitar overdub with the descending line in the chorus which, to me, makes the song worth hearing. The mix at the link above is a monophonic mix which is probably using just one of the two microphones. Here is a stereo mix of the song for comparison which uses both microphones and sounds a little boomier (and roomier). All of the reverb is actual room sound.
I had totally forgotten about this song until a couple days ago when Seven found a version of The Dead Milkmen performing it during the Stoney's Extra Stout (Pig) recording sessions. The Milkmen never finished the song either - it just wasn't clicking with us - though I do vaguely remember that Rodney wrote verses for it.
Thanks to Seven for providing the song files.
Live at the Metro Gallery in Baltimore, Maryland 10-25-2014 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 146 MB)
On October 25, 2014 the Dead Milkmen played a show for Feed the Scene at the Metro Gallery in Baltimore, Maryland. Someone bootlegged the show from the audience and then was kind enough to share it with me and I'm now sharing it with you. Sharing is caring!
There was a lot of energy in this show from the audience and the band, and the recording quality is decent. It's a long set. Including the encore it stretches to one hour and twenty minutes. You can listen to the whole show in one file from the link above. Or, grab all 31 separated tracks in the zipped file of mp3s here.
Special thanks to Dan Strafford for the recording.
Springy (instrumental) - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 - 2.45 MB)
Springy is an instrumental track I recorded sometime in 2002 using the Tascam 787 digitial 8-track recorder. There was no particular reason or project for this recording as far as I can recall. It is really just a doodle, a quick recording of an idea. I recently stumbled upon it while going through a book of burned CD-Rs. It was on a CD-R mysteriously labeled "D.N.F.I."
Live in Cleveland 10/10/2010 - Joe Jack Talcum & The Powders (mp3 - 60.7 MB)
This recording was extracted from the audio track of the first half of a DVD of a bootleg video from my show with The Powders at Now That's Class in Cleveland, Ohio. I seem to recall that our van was broken into the night before in Detroit (where we had a great show) and we had to get a new window installed on a Sunday. We made it to the venue with just minutes to spare.
Live at The Brewery in Raleigh, North Carolina on July 13, 1986 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 - 86.4 MB)
This is a fan recording from the audience from The Dead Milkmen's show in Raleigh, North Carolina during the hot southern leg of our Eat Your Paisley tour in the summer of 1986. I have no information on who made the recording. It was digitized from a cassette source.
Live at The Beaumont Warehouse, April 27, 2014 - Mohawktown (mp3 - 56.5 MB)
Mohawktown is a Philly-based Motown and 60's soul punk rock cover band consisting of members of The Shakes, Mischief Brew, Pushin It 2 The Limit, The Repellers and The Low Budgets (me), among others. It's a 9-piece group that plays an average of once a year. This bootleg was recorded by the drummer, Brian Michael, at our show last year at the Beaumont Warehouse in West Philly. As far as I know, it is the only complete show recording that exists. The link above gives you the complete show as one file for streaming or right-click downloading. Or, you can get a zipped file of individual song tracks by clicking here. Thanks to Brian for the recording.
Zoom Demos (2011) - Joe Jack Talcum (zipped mp3 files - 16.9 MB)
These three songs were recorded on a Zoom Handy digital recorder sometime in 2010 as demos for Samuel Locke-Ward to use to make band arrangements for The Powders who would record the songs with me on the split LP with Sam and the Boo-hoos titled Just Add Tears.
Click the titles below to play the mp3s, or click the link above to get the zip file.
*The original multi-tracked version of "Come Ride My Funny Car" was released on the Purgatory Beat cassette by The Dead Milkmen the year before the live band was formed.
Joe Jack Talcum Live at the Jerkhaus (March 26, 2011) - Joe Jack Talcum (zipped mp3 files - 87.7 MB)
Charlie Swanson graced me with this month's bootleg which is a recording that his friend Jon Paul made of my set at the very last house show ever held at a bike-filled brownstone in Brooklyn known as The Jerkhaus. I recall that there were many bands on the bill. I performed last, after the kegs were kicked and all but the heartiest partygoers remained. I received this bootleg on a two-track CD-R and so I am presenting it in two tracks, Part 1 and Part 2, which you can stream using the links below, or download as a zip file using the link above.
Live at the Balcony on March 21, 1997 - Touch Me Zoo (Final Show) (mp3 file - 34.7 MB)
Touch Me Zoo's very last show was not a particularly good one. Though the set list was adventurous, with songs from all four incarnations of the band including some brand new ones, the pace felt awkward. But it got recorded, and here it is for you to hear should you dare. We disbanded the very next day after Seven threw in the towel. In this incarnation of the band Juan Neuvo played bass, Brian Michael played drums, Seven Morris played lead guitar and I played guitar and tried to sing. Here is the set list:
Update: Seven tweaked the audio file and improved the sound quality. I replaced the original file with the improved one that Seven provided on 10/16/2015.
WBGU Special Report on the Dead Milkmen, 1989 - WBGU-FM 88.1, Bowling Green University in Bowling Green, Ohio (mp3 file - 36.4 MB)
This is the counterpart to the bootleg that was posted in September 2005, the interview with Fred Wright and Scary Mary from WBGU-FM. This is the special feature on the Dead Milkmen that made use of that interview and was aired on the college radio station of Bowling Green University, WBGU-FM, sometime in 1989.
Tape Over Hanson EP (cassette) -The Low Budgets (mp3 file - 11 MB)
Sometime in 2003 a friend sent me a box of unsold, unopened Hanson cassingles (cassette singles). With 4 minutes of tape per side, The Low Budgets decided to use them to dub our recent demo recordings to sell at shows. We called it the "Tape over Hanson" cassette. This here is the digitization of that cassette, with two songs per side. The link above has both sides in one mp3 file. This link here has two mp3 files, one for each side of the tape, zipped up, in case you want to record over your own Hanson cassingle. (The name of the single was This Time Around.) These songs were recorded in the Pleasure Bungalow probably sometime in early 2003.
Live at the Athens Pop Fest - 2011 - Joe Jack Talcum & the Threads (mp3 file - 36 MB)
Due to a clerical error, I was booked to play the Athens Pop Fest as a solo artist the same year that the Dead Milkmen were booked. Since they were going to be there anyway, the other Dead Milkmen agreed to be my back-up band, the Threads, for this unique ten-song set recorded live at the Caledonia Lounge (Athens GA) on October 15, 2011. Thanks to Jason Seiple for the recording.
Ripped Off (Live at the Beaumont Warehouse) - The Low Budgets - 2015 (mp3 file - 4.3 MB)
This song was recorded at the Low Budgets reunion show (with drummer Brian Michael replacing Steve Please) at the Beaumont Warehouse on December 19, 2015. This is the opening of the set. Thanks for Brian Michael for the recording.
Rocketship to Mars - Joe Jack Talcum (demo) (mp3 file - 6.12 MB)
This month's bootleg is a dirge I recorded on Tascam 4-track sometime in the autumn of 1994. I suppose if I finished it and mixed it, it would have been a candidate for the 'Sweet n Low' cassette release (under the Butterfly Joe moniker). I never made a mix down, though. My good friend Seven Morris, who has been digitizing those old 4-track tapes, found it recently and made this mix.
Bitchin' Camaro (Dr Demento Edit) - Dead Milkmen (from the Dr Demento show aired the weekend of August 1-2, 1987) (mp3 file - 3.44 MB)
While on tour in the summer of 1987 in support of our then new album Bucky Fellini we were listening to the radio while driving one Sunday night in our van when, flipping through the stations, we came across The Doctor Demento show. Shortly after tuning it in to our surprise the doctor honored a listener request for our song "Bitchin Camaro". It was a chopped down version, with a lot of the banter from the slow part of the song removed. It was not an edit that we ourselves made. Still I was glad it got played and that we just happened upon it on the radio. This month's bootleg is the snippet from the show with the edited version of the song.
Beer Self (Don Black) - Chris & Joe (a/k/a Rick & Jonk) (mp3 file - 7.26 MB)
This is from a four-track cassette recording I found in my basement this morning. There is no date on the tape but I have a feeling it is from 1998, and I also have a feeling it was recorded on Mother's Day night. It is a song that Chris Peelout wrote which the Town Managers played in our latter day sets. (The Town Managers released a studio version of the song for compilation album for which it was simply titled Don Black.) Chris played guitar and I played keyboards. There are two tracks of vocals.
Live at the OK Hotel - February 25, 1994 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 file - 87.8 MB)
Several people have asked me to post more Dead Milkmen live shows from the 90's, so here you go. This one is from our very last tour with Dave Blood. (As far as we were concerned at the time, this was our last tour ever.)
This recording was made from the audience at the legendary OK Hotel venue in Seattle, Washington. I obtained in on cassette. I do not know who recorded it.
No! Go! Tell! Live at Kung Fu Necktie - No! Go! Tell! (July 26, 2009) (mp3 file - 41.2 MB)
No! Go! Tell! was a band founded by Woods Stevens, whose current project goes by the name F. Woods (who toured with me recently on the Tandem Solo Tour). The members were Chris Mahoney on bass, Dan(drew) Stevens on mandolin and organ, Brian Michael (Sprenger) on drums, Woods Stevens on lead guitar and lead vocals, and me on rhythm guitar. (We all sang backup vocals.) The band lasted about a year and a half before disbanding, and played a half dozen shows, though I was not in the second and final incarnation. This was our second show, and took place at Kung Fu Necktie in Philadelphia. I believe this set was recorded by Brian.
8 Ball with Chris - Jiffy Squid (mp3 file - 2.51 MB)
This song, which is also known as Scotch Tape, from the Jiffy Squid's first album, USA Today, Tomorrow... (also known as First Album) features the voice of local Portland, Oregon celebrity Tom Peterson who sadly passed away recently. Tom's voice was the alarm from the Tom Peterson TV-shaped clock, which is what we sampled for the Jiffy Squid recording. Jiffy Squid was a recording project that I had with my friend Gabriel Taylor, from Portland, who visited me in Philly in August of 1993 after taking an art class in New York. We spent a rainy week in August 23 years ago writing and recording songs together which became our first cassette album, which you can download for free by clicking this link here. (Tom Peterson would have agreed that free is a good price.)
Music for the Mindless - Side One & Side Two - Jack Talcum & The Dead Milkmen (mp3 file - 35.5 MB & 35.6 MB)
This was the 4th Dead Milkmen cassette that was "released" before the band was a real band. This one was mostly recorded by me alone (at the start of the summer of 1980 if my memory is correct) and with some assistance from the "Pope" Garth O'neil (my friend and neighbor). I recently found this original copy, complete with the artwork, while unpacking boxes after moving into a new place, in a box that had not been opened in years. Perhaps it would have been better off lost, but too late. From Me to You (Beatles) and My Bonnie (Scottish folk song) are covers. The rest are originals.
My Back Pages (live) - Talcum Powder Trio (mp3 file - 4.23 MB)
Here's a Bob Dylan cover, by way of The Ramones and The Byrds, from my 2010 Heatwave southern U.S. tour with the Talcum Powder Trio. Drummer Marshall Fischer captured it at "North America's Greatest Dive Bar" The Whig in Columbia, South Carolina with his trusty Tascam digital recorder. Andrew Jacobs provided bass.
Shop with Pop - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 file - 6.2 MB)
This demo was recorded in 1993 by Seven Morris and me under the moniker Touch Me Zoo for an album of children's songs that thankfully never saw the light of day. Seven recently remixed the multi-track cassette recording for this bootleg version.
I Can't Stay Awake - Joe Jack Talcum & Hugh Hamilton (mp3 file - 4.61 MB)
This sprightly cover of a Dead Milkmen song, penned by Dave Blood, was recorded by Hugh Hamilton and me just over 12 years ago in Hugh's office studio, around the time of the Dave Blood memorial concerts held at the Trocadero in Philadelphia. I sang and played guitar on this recording while Hugh played all of the instruments and produced the stereo mixdown.
You Can't Judge a Book by the Cover - Dead Milkmen (Live) (mp3 file - 5.66 MB)
"You Can't Judge a Book by the Cover" is a song by Willie Dixon that was made popular in 1962 by Bo Didley. It was also covered by The Monkees, the Yardbirds and various other groups. This is a version of the song as performed by The Dead Milkmen in May of 1988 at The Chestnut Cabaret in Philadelphia.
Live at Asbury Lanes, Asbury Park, New Jersey, September 2, 2009 - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 file - 44.7 MB)
This was a show early in my first tour with Samuel Locke Ward and The Bassturd in 2009. The venue was a bowling alley in Asbury Park, New Jersey, called Asbury Lanes. Patrons bowled as I performed and occasionally you can hear pins dropping. This is a cassette recording made by Sam - you can hear him apologize for starting the recording late.
Studio Red Sessions - Part 1 - Ornamental Wigwam (mp3 file - 8.64 MB)
In the summer of 1990, Ornamental Wigwam (which was Dave Blood and me) booked a couple recording sessions in Adam Lasus's Studio Red with Secret Cinema's Jay Schwartz as the producer. For one of the sessions we had a drummer, Seth Baer (of Nixon's Head). But for this session, which I believe was the first of the two, we recorded without a drummer which was the way we performed live at shows.
This month's bootleg is a collection of some of the songs we recorded:
Studio Red Sessions - Part 2 - Ornamental Wigwam (mp3 file - 15.2 MB)
In the summer of 1990, Ornamental Wigwam (which was Dave Blood and me) booked a couple recording sessions in Adam Lasus's Studio Red with Secret Cinema's Jay Schwartz as the producer. For one of the sessions we had a drummer, Seth Baer (of Nixon's Head). These are the songs that were recorded in that session:
Dave Blood: Bass, vocals
Joe Jack Talcum: Guitar, keyboards, vocals
Seth Baer: Drums, percussion
Andy Bresnan: Horns (on Life Is Better In The Movies)
Live at the Pilot Light in Knoxville, Tennessee - Joe Jack Talcum (mp3 file - 48.1 MB)
This is an audience recording of the first show from my Acoustic Zombie Tour which took place on a downpouring night at The Pilot Light in Knoxville, Tennessee before a very appreciative crowd. Thanks to Tyler Sonnichsen for the recording.
Live at Mississippi Nights in St. Louis, Missouri, August 26, 1987 - The Dead Milkmen (mp3 file - 81 MB)
This is the live show with the original edits and interspersed interviews as it was aired on a community access cable TV show in St. Louis back in the summer of 1987. Part of this show was used in the Dead Milkmen DVD "Philadelphia In Love" issued by Restless Records in 2003. We were in the middle of a U.S. and Canadian tour to promote our third album, Bucky Fellini when the show was recorded.
You can currently see the show in its entirity on YouTube.
Pipe Bomb / Murder (Live) - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 file - 8.05 MB)
These two songs were recorded live at the Trocadero in Philadelphia in December of 1995. I'm not sure of the exact date. This was recorded on a portable cassette player located near the sound board. These were the first two songs of a set. (The recording was incomplete.) I recall this being a set that we played opening for The Rentals. I also recall that The Town Managers played a show later in the night at a Temple University frat party (which was not recorded). Touch Me Zoo consisted of Seven Morris on lead guitar, J.P. Hasson on bass, Brian Michael on drums and me on guitar and vocals.
"Blackness" Outtakes - Jasper Thread (mp3 file - 9.02 MB)
In 1987, when I was living in the Germantown section of Philadephia, I made a mostly home-recorded album (3 of the songs were recorded in a real studio) called Nowhere is Far under the moniker Jasper Thread. It was designed to fit onto one side of a 60-minute cassette. I finished the music and sequenced the songs, but I never made cover art for it and never issued it. Instead, I decided to scrap two songs from it and replace those with some new recordings to make it fit on one side of a 90-minute cassette, and I renamed the album Blackness. These are the two songs that were scrapped. The first had the working title "Teenager World" before the slowed-down vocals were added. The second song had the working title "I Don't Want To Know". Since I never made artwork for Nowhere Is Far I never came up with final song titles.
You can hear the entire 8-song Nowhere is Far album in its original sequence here.
Methodist Coloring Book / Ever Fallen In Love - Joe Jack Talcum & F. Woods, Live at Dogfish Head (mp3 file - 11.7 MB)
These two songs are from a live soundboard recording made on July 29, 2017 at Dogfish Head Brewings and Eats in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where I performed with F. Woods. I played acoustic while F. Woods played electric guitar. "Methodist Coloring Book" is a Dead Milkmen song. "Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've)" is by the Buzzcocks. The recording was made by Dave, the house sound engineer at Dogfish Head which is a brewbup restaurant that has live entertainment.
Live at the Halloween Barn Party, October 1994 - Touch Me Zoo (mp3 file - 44.3 MB)
This month's bootleg was first published on the Facebook page for Touch Me Zoo. It was recorded on Tascam 4-track cassette live at a concert that Touch Me Zoo performed in a barn somewhere in Bucks County, Pennsylvania for a Halloween party in October 1994. Most of the party attendees were in costume. There was a keg of birch beer. I don't remember much else about the event except that we used the 4-track to make a live recording which was mixed by Seven. I assume we fed a direct line from the mixing board into the 4-track and also had some open air microphones for the recording. I also remember that we played a Ween song which was rather new at that time, which I sang very poorly.
Strawberries and Asparagus, Side 1 and Side 2 - Jack Talcum & the Creeps (2 mp3 files - 22 MB each)
This is perhaps one of the worst albums I've ever put together. It was compiled one day in early 1980 from random solo recordings plus a couple songs that were recorded on the spot to fill out the tape. By this time two "Dead Milkmen" tapes had been made (So Long Seventies and Folk Songs for the Eighties) and I had published a couple issues of the fake Jack Talcum Fan Club Newzletter. I recall that I had stayed home from school the day I made this album but from the sound of it I wasn't all that sick, except maybe in the head. I'm not sure of the titles of the songs because the ink faded almost completely on the back cover, but there are some clues in the liner notes.
So Long Seventies - The Dead Milkmen with Jack Talcum, Jr. (mp3 file - 72.9 MB)
This is the first cassette album made with the 'Dead Milkmen' name. (In the fictional Dead Milkmen backstory, this is the third Dead Milkmen album, but it is the first to feature Jack Talcum, Jr.) This tape was made with the help of my friend Garth as well as my youngest brother, Ben, and my sister, Mary Beth, and the youth director from Garth's church whose name now escapes me. It was meant to be intentionally bad but in a humorous way. Whether it has any entertainment value at all is debatable. As the story goes, Garth passed his copy of the tape on to Rodney at our high school, which led the way for Rodney joining us for future 'Dead Milkmen' escapades, which in turn paved the way for the real band of the same name.
I gave away my only copy of the tape sometime during the mid-90s via the mail and I don't remember who I sent it to. But someone digitized it and it found its way to the Internet. Currently someone named "Jasper's Banjo" is streaming this album on YouTube but that version inexplicably has an extra song tacked on it. The version here is how it was originally presented.
The link above gives you both sides of the album in a single file. If you would like each song in its own file use this here link for a zipped up file: DeadMilkmen-SoLongSeventies.zip
Here is the bootleg of the month:
The Jean Genie (David Bowie cover) - The Dead Milkmen live at Laurel Hill Cemetery, September 30, 2016 (mp3 file - 5.41 MB)
David Bowie passed away about two years ago on January 10, 2016. The Dead Milkmen played tribute to him later that year at our Laurel Hill Cemetery show by performing "The Jean Genie" with Live Not On Evil's Rob Windfelder joining in on vocals. I got this bootleg from a recording posted on YouTube by PhillyPartTow. The start of the song is clipped off.
Dead Milkmen Live at the No Bar & Grill - July 20, 1986, Muncie, Indiana. Recorded live to cassette on a hot, humid night.