Five Firsts: Bob “Loc” Resnick of the Backburners
NAME: Bob Resnick (Loc)
BAND AFFILIATION: The Backburners, Off The Record, Restless
INSTRUMENT: Congas/Percussion, Drums
1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … The first album I ever bought was the Young Rascals’ “Greatest Hits.” Somehow, the Rascals were able to capture growing up in Brooklyn. “Good Lovin'” still grooves as good as any rock song ever made, and I have to sing the chorus to “A Girl Like You” every time that comes on. Throw in a cover of “Midnight Hour,” as well as “Mustang Sally,” and the beach club party can begin.
2. THE FIRST CONCERT I EVER SAW WAS … When it comes to concerts, I was a lucky man. A 30-minute subway ride to Manhattan would get us to the Fillmore, where I’m pretty sure the prices were $3.50, $4.50, and $5.50!!!!! The revolutionaries in the Village still had the nerve to scream, “Free the music.” The first concert was Jefferson Airplane with the American debut of this crazy British singer by the name of Joe Cocker. The Airplane was rolling out “Volunteers,” and Cocker had the nerve to cover “With a Little Help From My Friends” and sound better than the freakin’ Beatles! A week later that August, this was to be morning maniac music at Woodstock.
3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … The first musical instrument I played was two drum sticks and a beat up Time magazine. Some of my friends would get all stupid, and we’d make up songs about neighbors to “Along Comes Mary” or “A Little Bit of Soul.” Somehow, I’d be the one smacking the Time magazine. Before long, I got a set of used Ludwig drums that I still am amazed I was allowed to play in the Glenwood Housing Projects. Neighbors were cool, respected one another’s space, and looked out for one another rather than telling other folks how to be. Definitely another era.
4. THE FIRST SONG I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … The first song I ever performed in public goes back a ways. I was a park guy. For years, we hung out at the 251 Park; playing ball, shooting the breeze, hiding on the backstreets and bringing out the guitars and my djimbe. The first song that I performed had to be either the Velvet Underground tune “Sweet Nothing” that we would whip into a frenzy or the Byrds’ “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere,” so we can all sing in Boone’s Farm bliss. Now, of course, banging out the riff to Cream’s “Cat Squirrel” or “Communication Breakdown” by Zeppelin in the back of Earth Science class didn’t count as a “public performance” although Tilden was a public school.
5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … The first band I was in were the guys I would cut out of school with and jam. We didn’t have a name; that was too much structure. I did that for a few years. The acoustics in a Chevy BelAir were awesome; “Dark Star” into “Love Light” drumming on the dashboard. I still get together with those guys and jam 40 years later. I am proud to admit that I am developmentally arrested. My first band that actually had a name was called Group Therapy here in Albany. Some of us were “street” and community counselors at Refer and Project Equinox on Lark St. at the time, and we thought the name was catchy. Our first “real” gig was at J.B. Scott’s opening up for these crazy guys who had a song on the radio about a lifeguard and whose members had all kinds of strange nicknames like “Bowtie” or “Sarge.” We then followed that up opening for a hot rock band in Albany (The Units) driven by this crazy drummer in long hair (was it always gray?) and fueled by a guitarist who made rock ‘n’ roll sound fiery. Many years later, I would ultimately play for over a decade in bands with those guys (Al and Todd) in Folding Sky, Mare’s Nest and/or the RumDummies. At that time though, when Metroland labeled Group Therapy as “… a clever rock n roll band,” I was set and ready to rock ‘n’ roll onwards to Names for Numbers with Dom Campana and Jeff Sohn, the Night Owls with Scotty Mac, Hand to Mouth and the Meg Johnson Band with Kyle Esposito and the Dummies with Clyde and Pat Conifer and assorted other outstanding developmentally arrested players along the way.
Bob Resnick joins forces with the rest of the Backburners at 10pm on Saturday at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que in Troy. Admission is free. The following week, he’ll team up with his bandmates in Off the Record for a free show at the Midtown Tap and Tea Room in Albany at 7pm on Saturday, June 25.