Blog

High School Confidential – CKVU TV Special – Vancouver 1983

By on Monday, March 2nd, 2015.


This actually became the impetus to forming ‘The Shoes’ for EXPO ’86 3 years later.

‘The Shoes’ ended up becoming ‘Revolver – The World’s Best Beatles Band’

Rocket Norton (drums), and John Hall (keyboards *both from the band Prism*) along with Skip Prest (guitar and vocals from the band Sweeney Todd) landed a gig as the house band on a daily talk show/news magazine TV Show called (appropriately) ‘The Vancouver Show’.

When the idea came up to do a show catering to teenagers and the music they listened to from the 50’s to the present, Rocket enlisted Michael Sicoly (bass, vocals), myself (guitar, vocals), Brian Newcomb (Bass) and Basil Watson (extra keys, vocals)

Rocket was quite enamoured with Michael Sicoly and I for ability to play and emulate Beatles music, so when he got the call to put something together for EXPO 86, he asked Michael and I to join him and Skip for that gig.

We heard a board mix the sound-tech had made during one of our performances. We thought it was actually The Beatles. We decided pretty much right then and there to form ‘Revolver’…

Watch Here


The Magic of ‘Johnny’s Place’

By on Monday, March 2nd, 2015.


Around about 1996 – 1997, I had heard about this little restaurant called ‘Johnny’s Place’ in Port Moody (about a mile and half from my place up the road in Coquitlam)

I had heard about it for good reason. Through the guitarist in Cease & Desist (Brent Howard Knudsen) I had met quite a few people.

So, I had met Tanya Panrucker, her sister Susan Smith and their mom Judy Panrucker. Judy ran Johnny’s Place. It was small; barely 40 seats nestled in a rustic surround which, from what I had heard, was mostly known to have the best breakfasts around.

I then heard a while later that at night the place was starting to go off….they were getting in some great talent. Judy ran into me at the bank one day and asked me to stop by – and suggested that maybe I could play there… but at the time, I was working 7 nights a week with two different bands so my time was pretty much used up for me to do ‘Johnny’s Place’.

The money they could offer was not huge due to their limited seating however Judy had said that if I were to play there, she could make it up to me with food and beverage etc.

Judy is and was always a very sweet person.

One night I happened to go into Johnny’s Place with my wife Joanne just to check the place out.

Judy’s boyfriend Barrie served us.

He took one look at me and said quite loudly, ‘ARE YOU MICK DALLA-VEE? MICK DALLA-VEE FROM TRAMA? THE ONE WHO SANG ROXANNE???’

I said rather sheepishly that I was… and he said ‘WELL LET ME THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!!!’

He went on to explain that in the 80’s, he would often frequent bars where Trama played. He knew that I would sing Roxanne at the beginning of the 3rd set, so he’d always make sure to chat up a gal on the previous break and ask her to dance the first song knowing it would be a ballad.

Barrie then said ‘you got me LAID so many times man!!! Let me buy you a drink!’

Ya… so I started hanging out there.

Because it was a restaurant, my whole family started hanging there. One of the last wonderful and deep conversations I had with my daughter Carolyn was there… a week before she died. Johnny’s Place started to mean the world to me as it did to a lot of musicians. It was just plainly magical.

Eventually, I wasn’t working Sunday nights any more, so I was able to start doing a solo there the odd time… then….I started doing every Sunday there.. it was just too much fun!

It ended up being even much more so incredible! My old pal Tommy Stewart started sitting in with me on drums and then the great Lee Worden on bass/vocals and the incredible Mike Norman on keys/vocals and sax who truly was probably the greatest talent I have ever known in my life. I hate cancer… taking a life so young with such huge promise.
But…. What a band! Probably the best band I have ever had ‘musicianship wise’ in my life. With Lee and Mike I was constantly simply trying to keep up. All in this little wee 40 seat place! Crazy!

Those Sundays were incredible!

When Carolyn passed away, Judy and Barrie graciously offered the restaurant for a gathering place after the service. It was perfect. Carolyn loved it there too…

Here’s a great shot from one of my Sunday gigs at Johnny’s Place with Jonas Falle on guitar beside me and the incredible Beverley Staunton. Beverley moved to LA a little while after this picture was taken and has had a huge career down there. Amongst a myriad of other gigs, she was the voice of ‘Dancing with the Stars’.

with Beverley Staunton and Jonas Falle

Enjoy this video from a TV news magazine that had heard about ‘The Magic’ of Johnny’s Place.
Thank you Judy, Barrie, Susan and everyone who made me and my family part of your family… and for introducing me to some of the greatest musicians I have ever known.

The following video was shot on a Monday night. Russell Marsland (you’ll see him on guitar singing) had the place hopping every Monday. Great jamming… the night the cameras were there I was sitting in with my upright bass… which I had just acquired and was trying desperately to get a hang of.
Russell is a magnificent musician, guitarist/vocalist and his girlfriend Suzanne Gitzi (Raven) is one of the best female singers I have ever worked with. They are two of the most wonderful people I have ever met and I owe most of our friendship to Johnny’s Place.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE MAGIC OF JOHNNY’S PLACE:

 
 


Garnett/Edwards

By on Monday, March 2nd, 2015.


Interesting project. Doug Edwards… wow – what can I say. The guy wrote WILDFLOWER!!!
I saw Doug play at The Sawmill Lounge at The Water Tower Inn with The Hans Staymer Band in Sault Ste. Marie when I was 17.
What a band…!!!

James Leroy was the manager of the Sawmill Lounge. James was the first rock star I ever really became friends with. James had 4 gold records in Canada at that time (1975). The biggest one was ‘Touch of Magic’ which I’ll post here: Still love that song…. RIP James… you meant more to me than you would have ever known…

James somehow heard that Jeff Neill, Michael Sicoly and I were to join Brien Armstrong (who he hadn’t meant) on the road in early 1976. He was thrilled for me (us)! He thought we were the cream of the crop in The Soo.
James had decided to settle in the Sault for a bit. Some say he had met a girl there (true) – others thought he had grown tired of touring (questionable…due to what I witnessed from him later when we hooked up as Shama had become quite a rising star in the prairies)- but my personal thoughts were, he was suffering from Type 2 diabetes. James was always overweight…regardless, he was stationed in the Soo…ran the Sawmill Lounge (booking some of the greatest bands I have ever seen to date) and working night shifts the odd night a CKCY Radio as a Deejay. When he worked as a DJay at CKCY, he would get me, and sometimes Michael Sicoly up to the broadcast booth with him for the night and tell us endless ‘road stories’. He was so thrilled that we were heading out west. He loved telling us about all the things we’d see and witness… what a thrilling time in my life!!

Back to The Hans Staymer Group. Listen here:

Hans Staymer was obviously on vocals (the blackest white singer ever), Wayne Kozak was on sax, Eddie Patterson on guitar, Doug Edwards on bass, Geoff Eyre on drums – I was watching with my mouth open. Incredible playing.

James tapped me on the back and said, ‘You see the bass player? He wrote ‘Wildflower’… (to me one of the greatest songs ever written… Listen here:

I never met any of them that night. I should mention at this time that I was underage and James (as the bar manager – risking his job) would sneak me in to see these great bands. Gawd I loved that guy! Aside from some very close family and friends, he was probably the first person that made me feel like ‘I HAD IT’… plus (to me) he had MADE IT! He was a rock star in my eyes…

Okay so now………Years go by…

…..it’s now 1986 and Marc LaFrance and I had been working together for a few months. One of his best friends was Doug Edwards. Doug lived in a house in prestigious West Van which he had bought with the money from Wildflower 11 years earlier. Doug lived very simply but was sitting on a pot of gold. West Van is one of the areas that would be known as’RICH VANCOUVER!’

Doug and I became pretty good friends and he even had me house sit for him for 7 months in 1986-87 while he went to Australia to study writing. (You never quit learning do you?)

He and Mary Garnett met in the early 90’s. When they released their CD, they asked me to play on a few gigs with them along with Marc and of course I was honoured to do so.

Doug still plays regularly as the bass player for Chilliwack… (one of my favourite groups of all time)

Video Here:


Trama at The Chain and Ballroom- Matsqui Penitentiary, Abbotsford BC, 1982

By on Monday, March 2nd, 2015.


Loved this gig… I believe it was an Easter Dinner. There were wives, girlfriends, kids there…. but wow… I LEARNED!

When I first got into the Matsqui Penn to play this gig, I was escorted to the stage. In those days with Trama I preferred to set up my own gear instead of using some of our help. (So be fair, after awhile Kenny Cheatwood started helping me out. He has gone on to be Cris Isaac’s right hand guy, so I was in good hands…lucky guy)

During set up I had my back to ‘audience’ side of the stage while I laid my cabling etc. I heard a voice calling out, ‘MIKE!!! – HEY MIKE!!!’. Now I worked with Mike Sicoly and Mike Frelone so I assumed the call was for them. I hadn’t been called ‘Mike’ since I left Sault Ste. Marie in 1976. As far as I knew the WHOLE WORLD knew me as MICK…. especially in the Vancouver area.

Because no one seemed to be answering this guy, I turned around and it was indeed someone I knew! BUCK!!! BUCK…from Landslide Road …where I had started my first band in The Soo!!! Buck’s brother was Brian who was ‘technically’ the first bass player I ever had played with in a band. (Is it called a ‘bass’ when it’s just a regular guitar out of tune with most of the strings missing?)

I asked Buck what he was doing in there. He answered, ‘Well me and my girlfriend robbed a bank a few years ago… but she ratted me out. It’s okay, I know where she is and when I get out I’m gonna get her!!!’

Then in the next breath he said, ‘Hey!! I’m actually getting out in a few weeks! What’s your address? Maybe we can get together!’
Needless to say, I changed the subject and ‘had something else to do’.

Maybe some of you may think badly of me… but I had two young children at home. No matter what my background was with Buck, there was no way in hell I was going to allow him into my home. He had obviously become an ‘unremorseful’ criminal….

After soundcheck we went back into what would be our ‘greenroom’. In there was a box of t-shirts and sweatshirts. Pretty cool swag actually… A few minutes later, the ‘promoter walked in. He talked with us about a few things (including what kind of drugs would we like…????) –

OKAY…so drugs?? In prison???? What the hell?

This was a PRISON… and not medium security either – and yet he’s saying we could get drugs?? Yes he said… whatever you want we have it here. Needless to say, we were a little freaked out about the way this was all playing out.

So I said, you’re the promoter AND you’re in jail?

He replied to the affirmative.

Then pointing at the box, I said, wow… pretty cool swag! (And indeed it was… the emblem ‘Trama… Live At The Chain and Ballroom’ looked pretty cool. I remember Kathleen our light tech was particularly enamoured with a sweatshirt.
As we said ‘thank you,’ and went to grab whatever we could, he said ‘WHOA!!!!’

We had these made up for you, but we need something in return… money…whatever you can afford or you trade us shirt for shirt.

I remember Kathleen traded her shirt for the sweatshirt she loved… and on and on… I think I paid $10.00 for mine… and $5.00 for another….

We knew nothing about contraband…..

We found out a few days later that our friend Sandy Flett (who ran a concert T-Shirt company), had sent those ahead as a gift without telling us as a surprise for us! They were our shirts to start with!!!!

Yup… BUDDY was in there for a reason…

Look at a few more videos for other stories….

Video here


Sammy Hagar – March 11, 2011

By on Friday, February 20th, 2015.


Sammy Hagar With Mick Dallavee. Brothers separated at birth perhaps?

Sammy Hagar With Mick Dalla-Vee. Brothers separated at birth perhaps?

Sometimes there’s never a dull moment – brothers from a different mother… or at least the same follicle family.
The picture above was taken at the Gibson showroom in Toronto. Sammy was in Toronto for Music Week. He had just recently sold off his interests to ‘Cabo Wabo Tequila’ for high 8 figures and had reputedly invested a portion of it back to a rum company that was to be based out South Asia.
Sammy was as smiley as you see in this picture. We didn’t talk music so much as just niceties and joked about how similar our hair and features were.

That night we were playing The Mod Club with Bachman & Turner and he decided to pop in for a guest spot during the encore. As he walked in the back door, he yelled out ‘Hey Mick’ (it’s always nice when people remember your name)…
Shortly after this little set we did, he scooted out the back door…

All in all a great experience… Sammy’s a good guy….

Video Here: