Saturday, December 02, 2006


This is the the one lonely remnant from the last band I played in, Tarn. One of the more interesting projects I've been a part of, we had two female bass players, Julie Lakey and Kerry Densley (Gentry from Ice Burns wife). Headed up by dual lead vocal and guitarists Chris and Dave (don't remember their last names). And me, Chris Wright, on drums. I had a blast with this band as drums are one of my favorite instruments to play. Although my time with the band would be short lived, as I was eventually kicked out! And I deserved it too. This was right around the time when I realized the whole Rock Star thing was quite working out. I decided to go to college and get a real job. I was studying non stop and had a hard time making it to practice and gigs on time (or at all). So I was excused from the band. I cant relay explain the style of music other that it was some sort of Rocky, kind of Sonic Youth, thing.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The White City Groove Police

At the same time Wheel Chair Weed was on the outs my close friend Dan Lloyd (on drums) was forming this band, The White City Groove Police. The band consisted of Dan Lloyd (drums and ring leader), Tiger Campbell (guitar), Ben Lloyd (bass), and J-Russ (sax). And a truly groovin band they were, a mix of jazz, rock, dub-reggae and swank. Although never committed as an "official" member, I played guitar on a few tracks of their self titled album and performed in several gigs with the band on hand and ethnic percussion. The band still lives today and has moved to Seattle where you can find them under the name Wet City Rockers.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Wheel Chair Weed, straight ahead Punk Rock baby!

Well, this next little entry is a tribute to my old band Wheel Chair Weed. I know, stupid name. Drummer Sammy and I had just come back from living in Alaska where this term was commonly used. Why we thought it would make a good band name I'll never know. I managed to hold a spot in this band for over seven years. Original members include; Whitey (vocals), Sam Compton (drums) Jarred Russell (bass), and me, Chris Wright (guitar). We had some good times in this band, lot's of shows, records and memories. We gave this band the good old college try and had a few near successes, including a sponsorship from Vans. In later years J-Russ would leave the band to be replaced by Chase Collard. Followed by the addition of guitarist Tiger Campbell. I'm sorry to say that I only have one picture of Chase and none of Tiger. Throughout our time as WCW we served as the default opening band for any Punk Rock show coming through town. we played with just about all of the big ones, some of which I managed to save flyers from. We had a decent following of our own as well. The last days of this band would be riddled with way too many bar shows, arguments and total burn out. Other than that it was a great time!

Whitey, showing the mic who's boss.

Meet Chase, on bass. This guy played bass with WCW after J-Russ bailed. I don't have many pictures of him but I managed to find this one of him passed out in the bushes somewhere. Great bass player and friend. Recently he had a baby girl born on the exact same day as my twin boys! We had a little party and introduced the little ones to each other. Crazy man, things change.

Here's a gig to remember, we were playing at a skate park in Provo, opening up for Face to Face and a sold out crowd. Whitey lost his voice first song in and walked off stage. We asked the crowd if they still wanted us to play and they cheered us on. We finished the set up with J-Russ on lead vocals. To this day I have no idea how he pulled that off. I never even knew the words to our songs till we put them down on a record.

Sammy on drums. Sam and I were super into setting new speed records for unloading the van, setting up the drum kit and getting it on stage at record breaking speeds. You could allays count on him for a smile and a positive attitude. We could be heading to what we all knew was going to be a total bust, but he would be super stoked, declaring how "every one is going to be there, I heard tons of people are coming". Even after a total bust he still felt like it went off! You gotta love him.

J-Russ on bass. These were some of Jarred's last shows with WCW. This was at the end of over a ten year period that jarred and I played together. I haven't seen him in years.

Live at the Holy Cow (now Urban Lounge). for months we played here every Tuesday night, and every Thursday at Bricks. We had some good shows here. These were fun gigs because WCW would usually headline, so we were playing for our fans which always hit home for me.

Here's a picture from our last show as Wheel Chair Weed. We thought it would be funny to dress up as Rasta men. For me, I was very much over WCW at this point and this gig was more torture than anything else. We had hit our limits as a band and we weren't progressing any more. Mostly, I was just really sick of playing bars twice a week and practicing the other nights. We were working way to hard and going nowhere fast. We either needed to leave town and head to L.A. or give it up. I think by this gig I had already given it up.

The Vans Warped Tour 1997. One of our biggest shows and probably the most fun we've ever had at a gig. Headliners for Warped 97 included; Social Distortion, Blink 182, Pennywise, The Descendants, The Mighty Mighty Boss Tones, Sick of it All, Royal Crown Revue, The Vandals and Face to Face. When we arrived (around 9:00 am) it was raining pretty good and the booking crew told us Wheel Chair Weed was canceled due to the rain. We had been looking forward to this gig (probably our biggest gig) for months. Needless to say we were super bummed out. So check this out, while we were loading the van back up some of the guys from Social Distortion heard that we were getting screwed out of the gig and protested to the booking manager, threatening that Social D wouldn't play unless we could. Since they were the main headliner, there suddenly was no problem with getting us on the bill. Pretty cool eh? Other highlights of that show include meeting the Descendants, eating lunch with way too many famous rockers to list, and having Face to Face give Wheel Chair Weed a shout out right before they started their set. So I saved this program and my band pass as a souvenir.

Alright, here's a story for ya. There was a snowboard shop opening up downtown (100 S. 63 West) and for some reason they wanted Sam and Myself to run the place. The shop, which was previously some kind of hippie incense store, was ours to do as we pleased with. So first things first, where do we put the stage? The shop had a fairly large storage area in the rear of the building, perfect to throw some shows in. We built a stage, threw some shows and eventually got kicked out of the building. Not because of the music, the owners of the shop were being investigated in some kind of murder case! We had no idea who these guys were, and we didn't want to know. Aside from that, we had a blast with this place while it lasted. We named the venue "The Back Alley" due to the fact that you had to enter into shows from the alley in back. It was right across the alley from the Dead Goat Saloon. That's me and Sammy in the picture, hanging out in the shop area. Check out the hippie pants in the background.

The stage at the Back Alley. At this point we were just barley starting to prep the space for shows. We ended up cleaning it up fairly well and threw up some decent murals on the walls. Eventually we turned this stage into our regular practice space.

Gig at the Back Alley. One of the best we've played. Both Lagwagon and Strung Out were two of my favorite bands at the time. I did the sound for the gig with same crappy P.A. Wheel Chair weed used for band practice. The sound was horrible but the crowd was raging! I remember the stage mains going down in the middle of our set. It was pretty chaotic. We didn't have the necessary permits to put on a show like this and the place was packed way beyond capacity. Needless to say, the cops showed and every body bailed. Fortunately the show was already over.

Phorhed Flyers, Yesssss!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

More Phorhed stuff

I managed to round up a photo of drummer Greg Jessop, taken in my parents basement back in the day. I think this photo was taken for the school news paper, hence the lame, "I can tell you're not really playing", pose. School newspaper, now we're in the big leagues! In the search for this fine pic I found a bunch of other stuff. Check it out.

during my search I found this old Slug mag from April of 1993. After flipping through I realized I had a few of the dates wrong in my previous post. I must have been 17 at the time. In this Slug Phorhed received a review from the Gas Huffer show. We were pretty stoked to get some press.

Here's the review. Notice how Phorhed is misspelled in two places. This happened where ever we would go. Flyers and reviews always had a new way of misspelling our already misspelled band name. That's what you get for trying to be clever.

In this Slug we received a decent review on a single we cut. It was a two song cassette we put out ourselves. The songs were recorded at Down Town Music. Packaging and distribution were handled by the band.

Here's the review.

In this same issue I came across an ad for the Salt Flat Records show with The Bad Yodelers as the headliner. Fun Stuff. I found a ton of old flyers that I plan to post next week. Yes, I know that nobody cares.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Gas Huffer, Decomposers and Phorhed , Club Starzz 1991

For post number 1 I thought I would kick it off with one of the first bands I played in, Phorhed. This was our first real gig opening up for Seattle punk band Gas Huffer. The show was a sellout and we more than stoked to be a part of it. We were lucky enough to get on the bill via Utah booking legend "Stormy", who now manages band tours for Rancid, The Offspring, NOFX and many other Punk Rock giants. I remember being super nervous and forgetting some of the lyrics. I was only 16 at the time.

The Venue, Club Starzz, was a landmark in the Salt Lake underground music scene. Bands such as Pearl Jam, Nirvana and the Smashing Pumpkins all played their Utah Debuts at this small church turned music hall. Before the club took on the name Starzz it was known as The pompadour which also lays claim to many historical Utah shows. This was back in the day when you could stage dive all night and not get thrown out. If you get a chance, or your ever in SLC, you can check out the now full functioning church at 750 S. 300 W.

Here's the flyer from the gig. As expected, Gas Huffer blew minds.

On Bass, Jarred (J-Russ) Russell. Note the beard and receding hair line, pretty impressive for a 14 year old. Seriously. Looking back, I don't think Jarred was from this planet. Musically, he was way beyond the rest of the band. As a child he was genius pianist. Very talented. Jarred and I stuck together for years after Phorhed and formed the band Wheel Chair Weed which we played in for almost 7 years. I know, who keeps thinking up these stupid band names? I'll explain later. Our team efforts wouldn't last forever though. It wasn't long before Jarred was being held back musically, He left WCW and joined up with some of the late members of Ice Burn and form the band Lion, and Lion Head Records. Last I heard he was playing Sax and Keys with the Disco Drippers.

Here's a flyer from the biggest gig Phorhed ever played. It was also one of our last. After the band signed with local label Salt Flat Records, this was kind of a "hey, here's all the bands that are on Salt Flat Records" show. Headlining the show was the legendary Bad Yodelers, one of my personal favorites to this day. I think I was more stoked we were playing with the Yodelers than I was about anything else. It wasn't long after this gig that we blew our deal and were threatened to be sewed by the label for breach of contract. We were supposed to be pushing songs from a single we cut about a year before the label even signed us. We were sick of those songs and wanted to push the band in a different direction. Funny thing is either way we pushed it, the music still pretty much sucked. We were young.

Another gig at Starzz. We were the opening band for locals Lumberjack who had a large following and usually packed em in pretty full. We played quite a few openers for Lumberjack thanks to front man Jeremy Chatelain now on bass and vocals for New York band Jets to Brazil.

Check out the flyer

On the floor. I'm trying to find some pics of our drummer Greg Jessop, but I'm having a hard time. You can kinda see him in this pic. One of the best drummers I've ever known, Greg played a huge part in shaping the sound of the band. I'm sorry to say that he took his own life a few years ago. We'll miss you old freind. Rock a beat up there in the clouds for us.