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Friday, 18 January 2013

Edge of Seventeen

If you have ever thrown a surprise party before you know how stressful it is.  Picking the venue, inviting the guests, creating an excuse to get the guest of honour to the party and all the other cloak and dagger manoeuvres involved in the planning and preparation, all the while hoping that no one inadvertently lets the cat out of the proverbial bag.   So, I ask you -- how do throw a surprise party at a popular Toronto club that is closed to the public, with approximately 160 guests, featuring the much anticipated reunion of  popular local band The Dik Van Dykes, who have not played together in 23 years?  And oh yeah, the party is for the band's drummer who will be expected to play the reunion show unbeknownst to him? 

To be honest, I have no idea how you pull it off - but pull it off they did.  Last month, drummer Stu Smith turned the big 5-0.  His surprise party was held at The Bovine Sex Club in Toronto -- the biggest surprise of all was having him get on stage and play with his former band mates for the first time since 1989. 
The Dik Van Dykes were pretty big in their day - in their four years together they played numerous clubs around Southern Ontario, released  a cassette and two albums (I did say it was the 80's) and opened for The Ramones over three nights in 1988 at R.P.M. in Toronto. 

I was seventeen years old the first time I saw The Dik Van Dykes at an art show in Hamilton.   They sounded like someone had take the Ramones, The B-52's and The Rezillos and shook them up in a bag.  Their lyrics were funny and poked fun at pop culture and local topics.  And they were so much damned fun on stage.  I was instantly hooked.  Shortly after this show, I made a concentrated effort to create a fake I.D. (which was pretty good and worked on most occasions) and I began sneaking into bars on a regular basis to see them play.  A turn of events which began my life long love of live music (and beer).

Watching the band I was immediately transported back in time and felt like I was seventeen again.  I jumped around and danced to all of their songs (yes that is my head that keeps obscuring the shot in the video below).  The next day my body (not so politely) reminded me that I was in fact no longer seventeen and had not been for some time.

The Dik Van Dykes sounded great - they were just as much fun as they were back in the late 80's.  Most of the members have continued playing in other bands over the past two decades and they sounded more polished and tighter than ever.  Here's hoping that this night was just not a one off.

Laslo Van Dyke

Pop Tarts Renee & Sarah

 Birthday guy Stu on Drums

Not the only one who went back in time

                                                   The lovely Robin & Eric
                                    Terry Pry-tooooo-la....Number six

Stu & The Lassie

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