Radio Free Hollywood Family Reunion

Radio Free Hollywood Family Reunion

The year was 1976 and they were five newcomers in three bands. Together, they helped stage ‘Radio Free Hollywood’—so named by music and pop culture journalist Gene Sculatti—and opened the door for hundreds of rockers. (from LA TIMES, SUNDAY, JULY 29, 1990 article by Don Snowden). In the mid-seventies, The Motels, The Dogs and The Pop grew increasingly frustrated by a club scene that refused to book local, unsigned bands so they formed a coalition with the intent to produce and stage their own live shows.

These three bands planned a show to be held at Troupers Hall, 1625 La Brea in Hollywood, that was a meeting place for retired actors aka “troupers”. The hall itself was legendary hosting a
1966 concert by the Grateful Dead, one of their earliest self-promoted shows and one of the LA Acid Tests—the poster for which was designed by LSD pioneer Owsley Stanley. The late
sixties and early seventies saw the Hall rented as a venue for the burgeoning Gay community in Hollywood. A very young Anthony Freidkin (now an award winning photograper) documented this scene with photos from Troupers Hall considered to be among his best work included in “The Gay Essay”, published by Yale University Press, and have been exhibited in museums widely.

The Radio Free Hollywood concert was packed to capacity, drawing almost 400 attendees, among whom were two of the movers and shakers on the Hollywood music scene, especially
when seeking a booking at The Starwood and, soon, the Whisky also—Rodney Bingenheimer and Kim Fowley. After the concert, they spoke to the bands and invited The Pop to play the following week at the Starwood.

The Starwood show would be the first concert at a major LA club featuring an unsigned independent local band which was not affiliated with Kim Fowley. Phast Phreddie reviewed the show for his Back Door Man fanzine and his enthusiasm sparked a close relationship between The Pop and Back Door Man, who released two singles for the band including their power pop classic “Down On The Boulevard”. Soon after, Gregg Turner of Angry Samoans fame and also a writer for the zine approached the band with an offer to release their first album.

Most of the Underground Clubs such as Wongs Chinatown, Wongs West, Club 88, The Music Machine, The Anti Club, Al’s Bar, Blackies, The Central, The Coconut Teazer, Club Lingerie, The On Club, Cathay De Grande, and Raji’s came in the wake of Radio Free Hollywood’s Trouper Hall Show, KROQ’s Cabaret Club, the Whisky’s switch from occasional disco nights and music company showcase venue to one that welcomed the new bands along with the Starwood. The LA MUSIC SCENE WAS ALIVE AGAIN AND A FRENZY OF LABEL SIGNINGS COMMENCED!!

This DO IT YOURSELF crowd (memorialized on a Rhino Release from 1993—We’re Desparate: The LA Scene (1976-79)) The scene was extremely eclectic (there “”was no true name for it” as liner notes stated) and represented a real grass roots organic push to get original music out there echoing in many ways the heyday of a generation before.

Our concert at the Bootleg Theater is to pay homage to these pioneers on Veterans Day and is in no way meant to disparage our soldier veterans. We instead want to honor our Radio Free
Hollywood Family with this Reunion since these musicians are also veterans in the music world. We will also specifically honor Charlie Quintana, Henry Peck and Don Waller who were very
helpful with the inception of this idea. All proceeds after production costs will go to Sweet Relief Musicians charity.

Gregg Sutton

American bassist and singer/songwriter.

The Textones

Southern California power pop/punk band formed in 1979 by Carla Olson and future Go-Go's bassist Kathy Valentine. The Textones released a few singles in the early 1980s for IRS records.

The Furys

Punk/New Wave band from Los Angeles, USA

$20.00 - $25.00


Who’s Going

Upcoming Events
Bootleg Theater