The Flamin’ Groovies formed in San Francisco in 1965. Guitarist and vocalist Roy Loney left the band in ’71 and formed the Phantom Movers in ’79. Wednesday, the band played Oakland for the first time in more than 25 years. Like their first record (1969’s Supersnazz), the set included a wide mix of originals and covers. They played the Byrds’ “I’ll Feel a Whole Lot Better” and paid particular tribute to the late great Gene Clark. Chuck Berry’s “Don’t You Lie to Me” and the Stones’ “Jumpin Jack Flash” came alongside originals like “Yes I Am” from 2008’s Jumpin’ in the Night and “I Can’t Hide” from 1976. The highlight of the evening, however, was a powerful version of “Shake Some Action.” Roy Loney returns with his Phantom Movers to the Stork Club on 1/18 with The Sloths and The Chuckleberrys.
Meanwhile in 1965 Hollywood, The Sloths played their first gig, mostly covers. The members of the band were 15-17 years old at the time. They recorded one 45 before breaking up in 1966. In the ’90s, the A-side, “Makin’ Love,” made its way onto the garage collection Back From the Grave Part 2, and the rest is history. My first encounter was in May 2012 at the Stork, and the set list hasn’t changed much. I ain’t complaining. Every band should open with Love’s genius “7 and 7 Is.”
The Sloths’ singer, Hank Daniels, is quite the performer with a unique act for each song. “Hey Joe” included the flag of Mexico and smoke (above). During “Baby Please Don’t Go,” he removed his shirt and stabbed himself with a knife, blood dripping everywhere. The Sloths will be at the Elbo Room on 1/15 with the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, at Forbidden Island in Alameda on 1/16, and at the Stork Club on 1/18!
Opening up the evening, a rare visit from The Rave Ups! Paying tribute to the Yardbirds for the last seven years or more, the band really nails it, bringing classics like “Heart Full of Soul” to life. The bongos on “For Your Love” were simply perfect and the bass player, Kit Newkirk, kicked ass. Lead singer is none other than Dave Seabury, who has been very busy lately as a Chuckleberry.
Between bands the crowd was treaty to a very tasty DJ set from Tina “Boom Boom” Lucchesi and Sid Presley. A great night of rock n’ roll courtesy of the great Total Trash Productions.