This is the story of a nerd who hated being a nerd, so he decided to learn how to play guitar, but found to his dismay that now he was just a nerd who played guitar. I honestly don't want to give you my entire life's story, so lets just say that the early days involved growing up in a couple of Twin Cities suburbs, and wearing sweat pants. You're not my therapist..... No, you can't send me a bill.
Seriously though, I was about 15 years old (that's 1995), and I had finally given up top 40 music for "Alternative", but I didn't dress alternative (other than wearing Airwalks I bought at Kohls), I spent most of my days listening to "The Edge", playing Doom and trying to get my modem to work, which it never did. I, like millions of other little suburban punks, decided that Green Day was pretty awesome, in the process pissing off a bunch of punk scensters in Oakland. To make things worse, I wanted more than anything to be able to play guitar like Billy Joe Armstrong.
I got sick of playing air guitar to Weezer songs, so right before I turned 16 I started begging my dad to buy me a guitar for my birthday. I ended up with a cheap Epiphone acoustic. Not very punk rock, but it did the trick (the thing still doesn't go out of tune to this day). I spent about a year learning how to chug out power chords and learned as many Green Day and Weezer songs as I could. An acoustic guitar was all well and good for that, but an electric guitar would be that much sweeter. I really didn't want a cheap, shitty Strat copy like all my friends had, so I spent all summer working at a grocery store to save up enough money. In the mean-time, I spent way too much time at Guitar Center in Roseville, earning the eternal hatred of several douche bags. At the end of the summer, I ended up with the US Tele I still play today, but I didn't have an amp yet (I borrowed a couple of amps from some friends). I finally got my Marhsall combo at the end of 97'. My first set-up was complete.
That's me playing the old Epiphone circa 1997 with my friend Aaron
Playing my first electric guitar in the backyard, circa spring 1998.
"Plan B" was barely a band. Hell, it was barely a name. My first band formed because it had to. I was a senior in high school in 1998. I was about to walk out to my car to go home, when my friend Nate pulled me aside and told me that he had scheduled us to play in a show that was being put on at the VFW in Rosemount. I was really fucking confused, since I wasn't in a band, and Nate didn't really play guitar (although he did have a crappy Squire strat). I had spent the last year playing Nirvana and Weezer covers with my friends Aaron and Brian. Brian had just bought a bass guitar and amp, and Nate knew a drummer, so he convinced me that we could put a band together and write 2 songs in a couple of weeks. I was apprehensive, but this was what I had always wanted to do, so I went along with it.
Nate, frontman of "Plan B", with me in a car, circa 1998.
"Plan B" was a train wreck. Aaron was part of the group, but lacked the equipment to be able to play with us. He ended up writing the riff for one of our songs "Secret Agent" (I'm too embarassed now to mention the subject matter of that one *ahem* Jebus *ahem*), but ended up feeling left out when he didn't get to play live with us. Brian was a decent bass player, but our drummer barely knew us, and we only rehersed with him once at a church in south Minneapolis. I still can't remember the drummers name. "Plan B" was designed as a one-time-only band; a band that would play one show, and then disintegrate, as none of us really had that much natural talent.
Probably playing Nirvana covers with Brian, 1998
The show went down on a shitty, rainy, early spring day at the VFW in Rosemount. The stage was just a bunch of shipping pallets at one end of a big moldy event room. The rest of the bands were of the suburban metal type, while we were just a bunch of fuck-ups pretending we were in a band. We were the first band to go on that night. We played a cover of "Breed" by Nirvana, forced our way through "Secret Agent", and then we played our only good song, "Demon Slasher". "Demon Slasher" was a three chord metal song, with lines like "Tell your little kiddies to stay away", and "DEMON SLASHER!" over and over again, kind of like how Vomit Sauce ended up. While we were playing, Nate got so into it that he shattered one of the shipping pallets, and then preceded to go crowd surfing with Brian. In the end, we actually did pretty good for a band that barely even exsisted. After the show, we all went home, and "Plan B" was never really mentioned again. I heard that the show was video taped, but I never saw it, and I have no idea who would have a copy of it.
The flyer from the one and only "Plan B" show. Notice the picture of Korn, and the made up band-name, "hellifyno".
So in 1998 I graduated from high school, and ended up living in Middlebrook Hall at the U of M with a bunch of IT honors kids. All that time trying to get rid of the "nerd" label, and I ended up living in the center of the nerd universe. Damn. Little did I know, that the other half of Vomit Sauce was living only three floors up from me.
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