By July 13, 2015 Read More →

Three Degrees of Separation

Broken Toys-Three Degrees of Separation
By Willie Hines

The upcoming Broken Toys concert at the Gallo Center on Saturday, July 18 promises to be a multimedia extravaganza with the musical participants all connected by the proverbial six degrees of separation. Actually,..better make that three.

The band’s members and their special guests have all crossed musical paths so many times they’ve built heir own rock and roll interstate.
Kelly Foley, de facto visionary of the project, played with Ed Dahl in The Mixers. Dahl did all the graphics for Broken Toys. Foley also organized “The Ballads” for Modesto’s State Theater in 2011, which featured Keith Boggs, Willie Hines and Eric Westphal, the guest vocalists for the Gallo show. Hines was in The Lights, a Modesto band with a regional number one single in 1980 which was engineered by Don Setaro, house sound engineer for the Gallo. Hines and Westphal met at Studio C in Stockton back in 1979 and have shared many a stage together since. Westphal, a major talent from Stockton, formed James Blonde in the late 70’s and played bass with Dirk Hamilton and Gary Young(Pavement), the latter along with Foley. Keith Boggs was the vocalist for Strayheart and Collective Hands which featured two members from The Lights.

Jump to the mid 80’s.Foley, guitarist Jim Sampson, bassist Steve Rehn, drummer Thom Calhoun and keyboardist Marie Santelices combine forces to become Broken Toys and write and record “The Cut Of Memory”, garnering rave reviews, college radio playlists and shows with Game Theory, Voice Farm and other indie movers. At the same time Hines forms Jet Red, signs to Sony in 1989, touring with Joe Satriani and many others. Bassist Brad Lang(Y & T) was in two Stockton bands, Knockout and Jackie Blue with drummer Jimmy Rehn, brother of BT bassist Steve Rehn. Another vocalist from “The Ballads” was Foley’s good friend Jeffrey Clark, who formed a band called Shiva Burlesque, which featured a young Grant Lee Phillips. Foley, also an artist, has had numerous exhibits of his sketches and paintings with musical accompaniment by Hines and Westphal’s groups. BT’s Jim Sampson was executive producer and played guitar on Hines’ last album “Whatever”. Setaro has recently finished the mixes for both “The Ballads” and the Broken Toys 25th Anniversary show at the Empire Theater in Stockton from 2012. Sampson and Santelices, the musical directors of BT. continue to record and perform form N.Y. and S.F. , respectively.

Like the stars of constellation whereby the pattern is not so discernable until all the lights are on, the musical linage of the Broken Toys Gallo Concert will reveal itself come July 18th, and a galaxy of friendship will be ingnited.

Underground Concerts and Beat Happy! Music presents with Modesto View and Wire and Wood Ltd. BROKEN TOYS at the Gallo Center for the Arts Saturday July 18th 7pm
Tickets are available at Modesto Visitors Bureau, Music Box and Music Go Round in Stockton and through using<> for $20 each.

Middagh Goodwin
Beat Happy! Music

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About the Author:

Middagh Goodwin LIVES Music. He has been booking and promoting Music, Art and Comedy for years in the Central Valley. He ran the award winning Plea for Peace Center in Stockton for 5 Years and has booked bands from A-Z. Middagh is beginning 2016 with a new position at the Gallo Center for the Arts and celebrating Beat Happy! Music's 30th Anniversary. Read the MAMAView every month and a the Needle Drop 52 Records 52 Weeks.