The night before this show, I fainted and split my head open and ended up in Cedars Sinai Emergency room with a staple gun to my head. You are not a real metalhead unless you’ve experienced having a staple gun taken to your scalp!
In certain circles, I’m known as “Crazy J”, and this night would be a perfect example of why I have earned that nickname. I really wanted to see my friend Ron Conflict play bass in the Lower Class Brats, so me and my head injury made the pilgrimage south to Santa Ana, slightly high on Vicodin.
The concert experience in the OC could not be more different than it’s LA neighbor; the line to get in was as wicked as the biting cold that night. Luckily, I know someone who knows someone, and we were whisked in to the comfort of the backstage dressing rooms where I could concentrate on staying upright.
When it came time for the Brats to play, we wandered near the side of the stage and settled in for a show that was as much about watching the crowd as the band (no discredit to the band, of course). There’s something about watching the enthusiasm of a young punk crowd that both makes me yearn for the days of reckless youth and touch my stapled head and wonder if I’ll ever be able to do a pit again. I watched so many failed attempts to rush the stage and jump off the speakers that I found myself wanting to encourage the young punks to keep trying.
Having just seen the Kubrick exhibit at LACMA and having a reinvigorated interest in A Clockwork Orange made this Droog-inspired band that much more entertaining that night. As they bounced around the stage, I restrained myself to not bang my head…which was no small feat.