Wimps were a punk rock band in Olympia in the early 80s. We weren't as hardcore as some of the bands, but we had our moments.
Matt: This is a band with a rich history. I just don't remember it right now. Ron: After my first year at college, I was skateboarding downtown Olympia when a VW Notchback cruised up and Mike Shaughnessy popped his head out saying "listen to this, it's our new band". Intrigued, I somehow ended up at the famous apartment above Barnes Floral, previously inhabited by Bruce Pavitt. After Bob Schermerhorn (Now known as Moses Gershbein) left the band to tour with the Wipers, Mike decided to play drums and Wimps were suddenly in need of a guitar. Thus began my association with Wimps. Capsule history of the recordings on this website. Some were recorded at The Evergreen State College in Studio B by Bryan Learned (bass player for the Young Pioneers) on 12/07/1983 in about 7 hours. I'm pretty sure it was near 2 o'clock by the time we loaded up for home. We did the lead and "backup" vocals together in one take and you can hear Curt sort of lose it when Micro kicks in with the falsetto on AppleJacks. When I had all my amp/guitar settings rigged for the start of "big brains" (She's Got What I Want), Bryan chimed in over the headphones with "uh, Ron, I think you better check your settings..." - he hadn't heard the song, since we'd maybe only played it live twice before the session. The Mudwest tracks were recorded in January 1984 at Mudwest, which was nothing more than a cheap ($175/month) one bedroom duplex out on Mud Bay Drive; about a mile past Cooper Point Road in Olympia. The only source of heat was a wood stove in the "living/dining/kitchen room". It had a bathroom that wasn't quite as reliable as the woods behind the house. The garage leaked and soaked the dumpster-salvaged carpet that we had bathed the entire space in, which made for some shocking encounters with the microphones. The recordings were made on a component Akai tape deck. We just plugged a couple mics in and it came out pretty good, considering. Most of track 18, "On and On", is lost, but I included it because it's a good sample of how much everyone (ok, Me and Mike) hated playing it and would take every chance to try to juice it up, screw it up, or generally try to get through it. We played it live on KAOS, but the copy I have of that session had omitted it as well, so this is really the only recording I have of that song. The rest of the tracks are from a live broadcast we did at KAOS, the Evergreen State College radio station. The bass balance on these should please Matt (in other words, we can hear him). I remember cramming into that studio, but I donâ€™t remember the date, probably around Feb/March of 1984. I think it was after we played the 13th Precinct in Portland, the "Olympia Invasion" tour, with Beat Happening, where Calvin needed me to tune his guitar (or was I just a convenient roadie?). Regardless, the existence of these recordings is owed to Cathy Clark, who taped us over the radio via who knows what medium. Last I heard, Lorian had the studio reel of this gig. If there's better transfer materialâ€¦
Have you performed in front of an audience?
Every 15 years or so we play live, whenever the old Tropicana building becomes available.
Your musical influences
Matt sez: These are my best guesses: Curt: Jonathan Richman Mike: The New York Dolls Bob: Kiss and Elton John Matt: Yes (after 20 years I come out of the closet) Ron: Adrian Belew and ZZ Top (speculation) Karen - ? Cheryl - ? Heather - ? Geoff - ? Ken - ?
What equipment do you use?
Matt: I had a Gene Simmons model bass, which I got when I assumed payments on it when the kid who was buying it needed to get out from under the debt. I borrowed amps. The other guys did a little better.
Matt: I just want to apologize for everything bad I ever did to anybody.