Randy Now‘s love of music is the subject of the new film “Riot on the Dance Floor” and the book “No Slam Dancing, No Stage Diving, No Spikes.” In this fun interview, Randy Now tells us some of the stories that didn’t make it into the film or the book.
“In the film and in the book I probably didn’t tell the best stories, but live on a telephone interview right now I can think of things faster, and I can blurt out things that I’ve never said to anybody else.”
Randy Now from City Gardens has been booking bands since the ’70’s. City Gardens was a club in New Jersey that was a home for punk and new wave music in the late ’70’s, throughout the ’80’s and into the ’90’s.
Jon Stewart from the Daily Show used to work at City Gardens as a bartender. Bad Brains and Ween played at City Gardens regularly. The Ramones played at City Gardens 25 times. Nirvana, the Beastie Boys, Sinead O’Connor and even A Flock of Seagulls have played at City Gardens.
And Randy Now‘s the guy who brought all this great music to City Gardens.
Randy tells us how he feels about his story being made into a film and a book, and how he’s not really used to the positive attention. He also talks about the weirdest show he’s ever booked, how he used to promote back in the days before the Internet.
Randy Now only books bands that he likes. Randy turned down Pearl Jam because he thinks they suck. He also turned down the Smashing Pumpkins because they wanted $300 to perform, and Randy felt they were only worth $100 at the time.
Randy talks about booking agents and weird stipulations he’s had to deal with over the years, such as an agent forcing Randy to book the band Poison Idea in order to be able to book Green Day.
Randy talks about being the only DJ playing punk and new wave back in the ’70’s and pissing off a lot of people who wanted to hear ZZ Top and the like. Randy tells us about a time some guy just strangled the tar out of him, tongue hanging out of his mouth like a cartoon character and everything.
Randy talks about his relationship with the Replacements and how Paul and Tommy will never play a show for him anymore. Supposedly the song “Shooting Dirty Pool” is about me Randy. Randy loves the Replacements but they played some really terrible shows at City Gardens and Randy went on the radio after one of the shows and talked about their performance.
“I don’t know if I ever told anybody that the song “Shooting Dirty Pool” by the Replacements is about me sounding off on the radio about them, about how bad they sucked. And they were listening to it in the van on the way to the hotel.”
Another thing Randy Now forgot to mention in the film and the book is the time his college radio show had a contest where the prize was you get TSOL to come play a show in your house. The guy who won owned a huge 15-room farm house, and everybody came out and partied while TSOL played in a farm house.
We also heard a rumor that Randy Now used to date Courtney Cox, the actress. Randy sets the record straight in the episode.
Trenton, NJ musician Dale J. Gordon comes on the line and gives his take on the New Jersey scene and the difference between the Trenton, NJ music scene 30 years ago and the scene today. Dale’s music is featured in the documentary “Riot on the Dance Floor,” and he plays shows regularly around New Jersey. It is very cool to hear the dialogue between a classic New Jersey underground music promoter and a current New Jersey musician.
Randy also tells stories about The Clash, Joe Strummer, The Fix, Pulsallama, Ann Magnuson, Edie Adams, Stewart Copeland, Gwar, the Zombeatles, losing a master copy of one of Sloppy Seconds releases and Keith Morris taking on the Skinhead Wall of Death.
Check out Randy Now’s Man Cave at MancaveNJ.com or at facebook.com/RandyNowsManCave.The Man Cave has live in-store performances from artists and sells all sorts of cool music-related merchandise, and even lots of cool stuff like Andy Warhol candy bars and bacon flavored soda. One thing the Man Cave does not stock is Pearl Jam records (although you can order them if you really want to).
Punk Rock Night
Rich Barker will be back next episode with more Tales from Punk Rock Night. But here’s who’s playing at the next two upcoming Punk Rock Night Indianapolis shows at the Melody Inn…
For more information, check out punkrocknight.com/upcoming-shows/