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VENTURA COUNTY WEEKEND | ROCKTALK

Despite Changing Cast, Ska Daddyz Release CD

With 24 staff changes, the album has been slow in coming. The raucous rockers will play tunes from 'Pick It Up' on Friday night.

August 22, 1996|BILL LOCEY | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Once in a blue moon, Halley's comet cruises by, the Cubs win the pennant and your significant other goes a whole week without saying, "We have to talk." It's about that time that the Ska Daddyz release a CD.

If those raucous rock stars from Silver Strand were any slower, well, their instruments would rust and they'd just be a bunch of guys standing around. Friday night, the Ska Daddyz will unleash upon an unsuspecting public their latest (and only) CD, "Pick It Up," at their favorite place, the Bombay Bar & Grill in Ventura.

The Ska Daddyz have been around, at least in name, for about 3 1/2 years. They consist of a cast of characters that changes about as frequently as the lunch crew at Taco Bell, with losses including original bass player Paul Shinn. The constant change in personnel may explain why they have a bad case of the slows, said Darren "Zorba" Cruz.

"The CD took a long time, but we've had 24 different people in the band and playing on the CD. Ever heard of the Trail of Tears? Well, this has been the Trail of Beers," said Cruz.

"It's a tribute to Paul Shinn, and the cover is a picture of the tattoo on Paul's back. He played on the CD and then got in trouble with the cops. They told him 'No more Ska Daddyz for you.' "

Apart from Shinn's legal problems, this has been a banner year for the Ska Daddyz--only three of them have been to jail so far, and all were at large as of press time.

And, a Ska Daddyz gig is always a love-in and a relative bargain. For $10 dollars, you get in the door and also get your choice of a Ska Daddyz T-shirt or a copy of the CD. It's probably worth ten bucks just to hear Cruz do his solo on their theme song, "She Likes to Party."

"Nobody paid for this--it all came out of our pockets," said Cruz. "So that's kinda cool. So, if it sucks or if it's killer, it's on us. We're already getting some airplay, and it only has one slow one, and all the good stuff on it."

The action begins around 8:30 p.m., and the band will start around 10. The Bombay is at 143 California St. It'll be the place with all the cops lurking in the parking lot. Call them (not the cops) at 643-4404.

*

Another band is having yet another party the next night. Extract, not surprisingly named for lead singer Marjorie Extract, is having a CD-release party Saturday night at Nicholby's in Ventura.

Extract, with a voice as big as all outdoors, has been impressing the local male population for years. Initially, she was in Scarlett Ribbons & the Johnny Yuma Five, then J.D.'s Last Ride.

Extract does the country, roots rock thing, and most convincingly, too. The new one is called "Broken Dream," and when she blasts out "Don't Waste My Time," every guy just knows she can't be talking to him. Robert Ramirez, the guitar player, has an even less subtle opinion of the whole thing.

"I love it," he said unequivocally. "Actually, we recorded the album a year ago come October, and the songs have evolved considerably since then. We're even tighter now."

Extract has a novel approach to this gig, which allows each of them more time to goof off. Four other bands are also on the bill, and each will cover an Extract song, then do one or two of their own tunes in the brief 20 minutes of allotted fame.

Those more-than-adequate-time fillers will be Telestar, Frank Barajas' latest pop rock group; Signicci, featuring members of Raging Arb & the Redheads; those folkies in Blimp; and the Beautiful Bruisers.

"We want to wrap up this CD thing, get as much hype as possible and make a big splash, then get back into the studio again this summer," said Ramirez, the man with the plan.

Buying a $10 CD will increase the splash for Extract, and the other bands are fun as well. Nicholby's is at 404 E. Main St. in Ventura. To find out more about this 9 p.m. show, call 653-2320.

*

Last weekend Joe Daddy's in Ventura was packed and steamy with righteous blues from Stevie Ray Davis (remember him with Michael On Fire?) and the Guy Martin Group providing the soundtrack. The place is small and so is the dance floor, but there are great blues people on the weekends, and more importantly, real root-beer barrels by the front door.

*

The Groove Fest last weekend at Lake Casitas was a lot quieter than the recent Civil War reenactment, and had better music and considerably less gunfire. Tombo Combo, Teresa James & the Rhythm Tramps and Mr. Ectomy were all outstanding and colorful as people twisted slowly in the sun to the tunes.

Other bands played as well, but the irresistible combination of beer and warm sunshine made a convincing case to leave while it was still in the realm of possibility. Rumor has it that there will be another such gig in a few months, except at night. Groovy.

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