Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Take Another Look ... The Secrets & Show # 405

In the middle of the Canadian Punk scene in the late 70s, guitarists Freddy Pompeii, Chris Haight and drummer Mike Anderson left The Viletones after disagreements with the direction that the band was going in and joined up with John Hamilton, a bassist that previous played in another Canadian Punk band The Diodes. Still trying to keep true to their Punk ethics, they went in a completely different direction. Calling themselves The Secrets (not to be confused with the 60s band of the same name from Canada) they absorbed Rockabilly, Blues and 50s Rock influences and started playing gigs around town. They quickly signed to an independent Toronto Label Bomb Records in 1979 and recorded two live tracks “Teenage Rampage” and their version of “Shout” for inclusion on the compilation album for the documentary film The Last Pogo that would be released in the fall of 1979. Titled And Now Live From Toronto ... The Last Pogo, these were the first recordings that The Secrets made.

The Secrets then began work on their full length debut which would be entitled Success Without College that was released in 1980. The album was an eclectic album which has often been described as part Punk part early 50’s Rock and Roll. The album featured songs such as the studio version of “Teenage Rampage”, “Suzie Peroxide”, “Strictly From Cough Syrup” a song which addressed Pompeii’s own person demons, and a cover of Roy Orbison’s “Pretty Woman”. The first single released to promote the album was “Tattoo City” backed with “Pretty Woman” which did get decent airplay in Southern Ontario and the album did get good reviews, but it did not translate well into sales. Following a live show Pompeii was busted on drug related charges. The band split at this time, Pompeii moved to the US, eventually forming Immaculate Hearts and released a few 45’s before becoming a successful freelance artist. Hamilton joined a reformed version of The Ugly Ducklings before forming Daily Planet.

While The Secrets time as a band may have been brief they were sustained in the public consciousness via numerous compilation albums in the 80s/90s. In 1997, the label Other People’s Music released the album Teenage Rampage which compiled the bands first album Success Without College along with the live version of “Shout” from The Last Pogo compilation album and six previously unreleased tracks. The Secrets are an example of one of those bands that pop up and disappear so quickly that most people may not even have heard of them, or maybe they even had negative things to say about them. Like many Punk bands have done they expanded into different areas musically, but The Secrets are one of those bands that are an important document to the Canadian Punk scene of the late 70s, even if they weren’t completely falling into the so called “Punk” category.


This week once again, I Filled in for Some Folks Get The Blues (from 9-10:30 AM), which I will be doing until the end of May. The show will be Folk, Country and Blues centric, but will also include glimpses of other Rock and Roll forms. Revolution Rock will follow this program from 10:30 to Noon featuring my usual blend of Garage, 70s Punk/New Wave, and Indie Rock.

Part One - Revolution Blues (Some Folks Get The Blues Fill-In) Play List:

1. Rosco Gordon – No More Doggin’
2. Jimmy Reed – Shame, Shame, Shame
3. Junior Wells – Come On In The House
4. Frank Frost – Harp and Soul
5. Toussaint McCall – Shimmy
6. Deer Tick – Friday XII
7. Joel Plaskett Emergency – Somewhere Else
8. Twin Library – Archives
9. Leeroy Stagger – Travelling Over Water
10. Indian Wars – Won’t Do A Thing
11. Pow Wows – No, Thirteen
12. The Angry Dead Pirates – Being
13. The Nevermores – Like A Pill
14. Wolfy & The Bat Clubs – Guy Like Me
15. The Molting Vultures – Cool Right Down
16. Allen Wayne – Chills & Fever
17. Grey Kingdom – When Seasons Drown
18. Woody Guthrie – Ranger’s Command
19. Leland Sundries - VFW Hall
20. The Mark Inside – The Bottom Line
21. Neil Young – Revolution Blues
22. Bob Dylan & The Band – Ballad Of A Thin Man (Live Liverpool Odeon Theatre May 14 1966)

Download part one (Revolution Blues) here!

Part Two - Revolution Rock Play List:

23. Holograms – Chasing My Mind
24. Rotten Tropics – Spectre Tectonics
25. Dum Dum Girls – Just A Creep
26. The Imagineers – The Legend of John The Terror (Notorious)
27. Is/Is - Moon Dropping
28. Bittersweet Draw – Leavin’ Hinton (CJSW Session)
29. The Gerry Alvarez Odyssey – In the Garden
30. Little Roosters – I Need A Witness
31. The Pygmies – She Lied (CJSW Session)
32. Ex-Boyfriends – Bubblegum (CJSW Session)
33. The Ugly – All Because of You (Live)
34. Blue Peter – Time & Money
35. The Secrets – Teenage Rampage
36. Dik Van Dykes - Pterodactyl
37. Blue Orchids – House That Faded Out
38. 101’ers – 5 Star Rock N’ Roll Petrol
39. Thee Mighty Caesars – Now I Know
40. Brian James – I Can Make You Cry
41. Iggy Pop – Some Weird Sin
42. The Hives – The Hives Are Law, You Are Crime
43. Generation X – From The Heart
44. Wire - Please Take (Black Session)
45. The Strangeloves - Night Time
46. The Vagrants - Respect
47. Square Root of Margaret - Attack of Giant Problem vs. the Creature from the Planet of the Incredible Sinking Solution
48. Black lips – Fairy Stories

Download part two (Revolution Rock) here!

Subscribe to Revolution Rock as a Podcast.

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