Bill’s Bio – Chapter 17

Episode 17

 A New Beginning


We’ll always have Tazania…

Posted 7/12/08

Tazania… (Pronounced Tuh-zaaay-nee-uh)

It was a Monday…. It was raining, and that should have been the first indication that it was going to be a lousy day…. It’s always raining in Tazania… hot, tropical, steamy rain that makes your clothes stick to your skin like they were dunked in warm maple syrup before you put them on in the morning… and makes the scum on your exposed flesh build up so thick you could scrape it off with your finger nail the way you would scrape a layer of butter off a cube with a butter knife… every day of the week…. Except Mondays…

It always snows on Mondays…

Mondays can always be counted on to provide a cooling, comforting respite from the muggy conditions of the other six days of the week…. Oh, the snow wouldn’t last more than overnight, that’s for sure…. White, cool, powdery all day on Monday, only to have its pristine brightness metamorphose into a murky, lukewarm mess with the always timely arrival of Tuesday… and the rain… and the heat… and the ever-present mud that saturates and mixes with the pure, white, cold powder and turns it into a putrid, brown slush – precisely like what happened to my heart when she walked out on me… on that hot, steamy, rainy Monday… in Tazania…

But I digress…

Havert was gone. And with him went our organ… And my Beach Boys albums…

All gone to the the barren wastelands of Bakersfield… And with only two days notice. And with them went my plans to insert some Beach Boys songs into our repertoire.

Havert’s dad had received a job offer that he could not turn down. The problem was that he had to be there in a few days – hence the quick departure.

Fortunately, we were not relying on his sister’s microphone by this time, so we were OK in that department.

But that didn’t make the fact that we had lost one of our brothers in music any easier to deal with. We either had to find a replacement or change our name.

“A-one and a-two and a-three and a-four…”

The music starts…

Spectator 1: “My, this band has improved somewhat, wouldn’t you agree?”

Spectator 2: “Why, yes, quite so.”

Spectator 1: “I think they are rather miss-named, though.”

Spectator 2: “How so?”

Spectator 1: “Well, they are called The Roamin’ five, and there are only four of them.”

Spectator 2: “So there are! Strange, I seem to remember a tall fellow in the back playing the tambourine. At the time I thought he was the only one of the lot with any talent.”

Spectator 1: “Yes, that’s right, I remember now. I wonder where he got off to.”

Spectator 2: “Who knows? He probably ran off to Bakersfield to hide in shame after the first time we saw them perform.”

Mutual hearty laughter….

The four of us continued to practice and hone our skills, but it sounded sort of empty without the organ (or tambourine). We also continued to attend dances and study other bands…

One night, we went to our own school dance, at St. Bonaventure, to see the band. We got there and were surprised to see some of our classmates, Peter Barta, Daamen Krall and one other guy, up on stage. Peter was playing guitar, One Other Guy was playing drums and Daamen was playing – a Vox organ!!!

Three things to be impressed with here:

  • Daamen could play the organ.  
  • Daamen had an organ to play. 
  • Daamen had a Vox organ and amplifier – the very same brand of amplifiers that the Beatles used. 

We all looked at each other with a brand new shiny gleam occupying each or our eight eyes in it’s respective socket…

…And an idea began to germinate in our collective mind…


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