Malibu Kens History Chapter 7

The following text represents my opinion and my best recollection of the events that happened 20 years ago. If you were there you may have a different recollection of these events and a different opinion. Scott Juskiw, January 2001.

VII. Hiatus, The Return of Joey Did [January 1982 - June 1982]

Joey Did would experience a kind of renaissance in the first half of 1982. While the Malibu Kens were going strong on their own path to self glory, I started up a project on the side to archive Joey Did's catalogue of original songs. I had a collection of basement recordings of our songs from our practice sessions, but the collection was not complete. There were some songs missing, there were some songs that were not played very well, and I had written a few new songs that were not appropriate for the Malibu Kens. I had recently bought a Teac 4-track recorder and elicited Ed's help in the production of what was supposed to have been a small recording session. It turned out to be much bigger than we expected. The plan was to have Ed and I record all the instruments for about 15 songs then have Mike and Dennis add the vocals in a later session. It took us a few weeks to get the instruments recorded, mostly because we kept re-recording them to get a better sound. We were having so much fun recording the new songs that we had no choice but to write even more. Now I'll be the first to admit that Ed is a genius, but I had no idea how well he and I would click on this project. Ideas were coming out of everywhere. Sometimes we'd write a song, record it, and then decide the next day that it was trash and record over it with a new song. We had a 90 minute tape and we filled up every second of it. Even though Dennis was no longer with us, I still had his extensive collection of high school era lyrics in a binder. Sometimes I wrote music around Dennis' lyrics or found something in the binder that matched well with music Ed and I had already written. I recall flipping through the binder and finding Blind Date. As soon as I read it I knew exactly how to write the music, and the song was completed in about five minutes. It happened that quickly. Unfortunately, I didn't have Mike's lyric binder anymore. He had taken it away from me some time ago when he found me reading and laughing at some of his less spectacular prose. Too bad, I would have liked to have used some of those gems.

During the run of this new Joey Did project, the Malibu Kens experienced a serious breakup that lasted several months and saw Mike moving to Calgary (where he created the first version of Junior Gone Wild). This was bad news because Mike was not available to sing for the Joey Did project. On the other hand, this hiatus meant that Ed and I had more time to work on this project; it became our only creative outlet. With Mike gone we had to find other people to sing some of the songs. Ed and I tried to sing some of the songs but we were terrible. Dennis was interested in the project and we asked him to sing many of the songs where we had used his lyrics. Jerry Jerry and Ken Chinn accepted our invitation to sing on a few songs. We asked several other people to try singing but they didn't work out. We even tried out Anthony Fulmes on a couple of songs, although we only kept one of his attempts. Ed and I were forced to singing a few songs after all. One day near the end of the project Ed informed me that Mike was in town for the weekend. We agreed that we should try to get him to sing the remaining songs that were in desperate need of a voice. Poor Mike, I was still mad at him for moving to Calgary and breaking up the Malibu Kens. He only had a few free hours available to record his vocals before heading back to Calgary. I showed up at Ed's house (where Mike was staying) at 9 am on a Sunday morning. Mike only had about 4 hours sleep. I slapped him awake and stuck a microphone in his face and said "here, sing". The session went as well as possible under those circumstances. Had there been more time, I know he could have done a better job.

Word about this new Joey Did project gradually leaked out and after releasing a few rough cuts there began a growing demand for copies of this tape once it was finished. I was very surprised by this because it started out as a completely selfish project to record a few songs only for my own listening pleasure. I didn't believe that anyone other than myself, Ed, Mike, and Dennis would have any interest in this tape. Nearly five months after starting what was to have been a three week project to record 15 songs, we emerged with a 40 song monster that barely fit onto a 90 minute tape. It didn't even have a proper title. We just called it "the Joey Did tape". Some referred to it as "the Scott and Ed tape". Eventually it acquired the name "Rock Snot" (nickname for a kind of freshwater algae: didymosphenia geminata). I made a paper insert listing the songs and had a few dozen copies made. The tapes sold out very quickly and bootleg dubs of the tape began to appear shortly after. It was a hit. People I had never met before had a copy of it. I have no idea how many copies of Rock Snot exist in the world today amongst all the Joey Did-heads. Probably many more than there are copies of Be My Barbie.

During this period, it was our intention to find a replacement for Mike and continue with the Malibu Kens, but it never turned out that way. We were too busy with the Joey Did project to seriously look for a new singer. We had approached Tim Serious with the idea of making a new band, but it took forever for us to actually get together. It wasn't until June 1982 that we finally arranged to have a jam session with Tim. On that same day Ed got a call from Mike saying that he was moving back to Edmonton and wanted to rejoin the band. Ed was against the idea of letting Mike back in the band but Jim and I both believed that Mike was the best one for the job. We told Mike he could be in the band again, but he had to wear a shoe on this head.

We did the jam session with Tim, and it went well, but we were mostly just going through the motions. Shortly after that we had our first practice with Mike in almost six months. Despite the long break, we sounded better than ever. We had all been working on musical projects during our hiatus which only helped to hone our skills. I noticed that Mike was much better on rhythm guitar and I had finally figured out how to do background vocals. We hadn't written any new Malibu Kens songs during our split, but we adopted one or two from the Joey Did project and proceeded to get back in the saddle.

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Last updated: October 14, 2017