A QUICK HISTORY OF DA SLYME AND IT'S SUCCESSORS FROM WALLACE'S VANTAGE
I began playing guitar around 1966, a $17.00 Sears (what else!) acoustic guitar, graduating to a Pyramid stereo pickup electric guitar in July 1970. I still have the Pyramid, however the Sears was unfortunately smashed at a Slyme gig around 1980. In 1970, I started at Memorial University of Newfoundland, and 3 years later drifted in the door of MunRadio (the student radio station - also known as CHMR).
Here lies the true beginnings of Da Slyme, though it would not begin for four more years. It of course began with some of the people I met there: Craig Squires, Peter Morris, Terry Carter & George Smith. Initially, myself and Craig began to jam together - just bass (and sax) and guitar. At one point Craig, I, Peter Morris, and another guy - Len Penton, jammed some cover songs one afternoon - Bert Jansch and Jesse Winchester.
Though myself and Craig jammed regularly at this time (and in both song formats and experimental formats) this was our first jam with Peter - as such, an important introduction. Later, around this time, myself and Peter and another guy - Mike Sullivan, did some recordings fondly known as the Day of Madness. These were experiments with tape lags - Mike was the first person I met who owned a copy of the first Fripp and Eno album. After the Day of Madness, myself and Craig would tackle the tape lag process regularly. These jams all took place in the studios of MunRadio. The events described took place over a period of nearly two years. Craig eventually left to study in Toronto.
Terry Carter had been around the radio station about the same time. In the spring of 77 a number of jams began with some new personnel. The spring also saw me with a new guitar - a Gibson SG and a good 100 watt Heathkit TA-17 Combo Amplifier built from a kit. Terry was a great hand to invite people he barely knew to jam. The thing began with myself, Terry and Bernie Broderick (a friend of Terry's - on guitar). I was probably on Bass and Carter on vocals and harp. Keith Collins, who Terry had invited up, played drums. He brought along a friend- Ashok Battacharya - who played bass (and later guitar). The next jam saw Bernie gone, Ashok's brother Jonok on drums, Keith on percussion ,myself on guitar, and Terry on vocals and harp. I have tapes of these jams and the notes on the tapes tell the tale. "The start of some thing different", reads the next one. Terry is gone, myself,Ashok, Jonok, and Keith-Jonok on some vocals.
The summer arrives, Craig returns to play some sax and bass and David Burley, a friend of Ashok, Jonok and Keith joins in on Mini-Moog. There are now six of us, playing a few original fusion type jams, " A Sailor's Tale" by King Crimson, "Editions of You" by Roxy Music, and others. At last a band, now a name, I won - WET CHEEZE DELIRIUM - the title of the last track on the "Camenbert Electrique" album by the fabulous band GONG, lead by Daevid Allen.
The band, a name, now a gig? Every year in the summer the local Arts and Culture Centre had a series of lunch time concerts outside on it's lawn. We applied and were on. This called for a new guitar - I bought an Ibanez double-neck - 6 and 12. July 29,1977: first gig for all of us I believe. Craig has a picture of this gig on his website. So we play the gig, what happens? You guessed it ...end of band... don't remember why. However, over the years myself and Craig continued to use the name for other projects. The photo on the above mentioned site was taken by Craig Butler, who will soon figure in the tale.
There was another thing happening during this period (74/75) which has to figure in our story. Every Friday during a period of around 2 semesters, a program aired on MunRadio called ISSUES IN THE LOO. It evolved from an earlier show called THE GANDER SHOW. There were a number of students in MunRadio who hailed from Gander in central Nfld. These individuals would assemble every Friday at 3:00 in the master control room of the radio station and take their buffoonery to the airwaves. This was an exclusive club - only Gander-ites need apply. With the advent of Issues in the Loo, this aspect gave way, and even us townies (those born in St. John's - pissants by birth), could partake. There were 13 shows, some have been lost. I do not believe that what happened in Dec. 77 could have happened without the weekly communal exercises in madness that were Issues in the Loo. A number of people got used to creating together so the next step was a natural progression ... it just needed one little push...over the edge.
September 1977: Terry is in Halifax, Craig is in Toronto, Peter Morris is in Calgary, Wallace is in St. John's. The world? It's exploding with Punk Rock. In November, a bizarre note arrives from Peter. It's the story of Touloose, Gibson les Paul broom player of the punk rock band Touloose and Da Slyme, darlings of the Halloween Party circuit in Calgary, and legends in their own mind...singular.
Contents of this website are copyright © Da Slyme, 1979-1999, except where otherwise noted.