Friday, May 17, 2013

Casual Fridays: The Radio Shack Story

Once upon a time I worked at Radio Shack. One of the best things about working there was I got to meet local bands. When I met them I often asked who they were and if they had a demo tape. Many were happy to oblige.

One night, shortly before closing an old van tore into the parking lot and a couple of guys and a couple of girls came out. From their distinct look, I knew they were in a band together.

They swarmed into the store like a ground blizzard across a rural highway each going in separate directions. I talked to each of the members in turn and finally to the lead singer.

"So you guys are in a band?" I asked.
"Yup. We're playing the Pomp Room downtown before it closes."
"Where are you from?"
"Altanta. We drove all the way up here in that hunk of junk." He indicated the old van.
"What is the name of your band?"
"thesshhmapontinwisgemelaninfsdness." Is what I heard.
"What was that?"
"thesshhmapontinwisgemelaninfsdness." He said again.
Not wanting to be rude and ask a third time, I asked if they had a demo tape. To this they shot looks at each other and snickered.

They soon left and I didn't think more of it.

Years later, unbeknownst to me, I had bought their album. When I looked at the band photos, I thought to myself, "these guys look familiar."

Another few years passed and I was watching a documentary when an image of Billy Corgan - with hair - appeared on the screen. It was at that moment that I realized who I had met all those years ago - The Smashing Pumpkins! I finally put 2 and 2 together and figured out that what that singer had said was "The Smashing Pumpkins with Melon Collie and the Infinite Sadness."

"Wow," I thought, "I met the Smashing Pumpkins and it only took me half a decade to figure it out."


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