Lights, Camera…Anarchy Underground music scene documented in “Hardcore Norfolk: The Movie”
Waxing Poetics’ frontman David Middleton once lamented that the 1980s-90s underground music sceneof Hampton Roads could have rivaled that of Seattle and Athens, GA if only the region had an indie record label like Sub Pop to document and expose the bands to the rest of the country.
Norfolk, of course, had previously gained notoriety in the late 1950s and early ‘60s thanks to local producer Frank Guida, who proclaimed Gary “US” Bonds and Lenis Guess represented the “Norfolk Sound.” This came fresh on the heels of Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps, a Portsmouth-based rockabilly band that would become a major influence on the Beatles, Rolling Stones, CCR and Stray Cats.
Norfolk bands continued to make industry noise in the ‘80s. While Waxing Poetics acquired some regional success with two well-produced albums, the Candy Snatchers made waves on a national level within the indie garage rock circuit; the M-80s were hailed as garage rock gods in Great Britain and The Mockers were beloved in Spain.
These groups were part of a large music scene that ignited in 1980. This is an era that predated the Internet, so the only way to socialize was to get out of the house and mingle. Since commercial radio steered clear of the emerging genre of music dubbed punk rock, people had to read about new bands in national magazine, flip through the vinyl record bins at music stores or go and experience live music. The legal drinking age in Virginia was 18, and a large segment of the local music scene was comprised of young adults hungry for the new music sounds and thirsty for beer, drugs and sex.
Norfolk, and to lesser degree Virginia Beach and Hampton, was a hotspot for emerging, cutting-edge bands (Nocturnal Zoo, Buzzard, Antic Hay, Thin Lads, Starving Artists, Ant Man Bee), clubs (The Corner, Friar Tuck’s, King’s Head Inn, Cogan’s Instant Art, Taj Mahal), record stores (Lot Records, Tracks, Off Beat Records, Skinnies Records, Fantasy), and a local clothing store/design shop (Street Theater). And it should be noted, the success of the thriving scene was due in large part to the hundreds of people who turned out nightly to support local music.
All of this could have been harnessed and promoted as a resurgence of the famed “Norfolk Sound,” but no one ever stepped up to take charge in a business-minded capacity. Until, perhaps, now.
On Saturday, August 20, “Hardcore Norfolk: The Movie” will make its debut at the Naro Expanded Cinema. The two-hour film is an extraordinary effort on the parts of longtime scenesters Debra Persons, Andrea Rizzo and the newly arrived videographer Paul Unger to essentially “tell our story,” warts and all.
As a disclaimer, I should mention that I played in numerous local bands in the music scene including the Thin Lads, which are in the movie.
Now, to get the advance skinnie of the whole thing, here is my interview with the HardcoreNorfolk.com gang.
Did the Trolling Bones reunion concerts (2008 and 2009) and movie motivate the creation ofwww.hardcorenorfolk.com as well as the making of the movie?
Paul: Really how this whole thing started for me, was four years ago when I arrived in Norfolk from my hometown Detroit. I was hungry at the time, looking for some dirty, gritty good original rock 'n' roll. At the time I was both exploring music of this area and testing the grounds as a video editor. I went to see The Candy Snatchers in late 2007 at the advice of Jeff Maisey…man, I didn't have a clue what I was in for, I'm glad he told me to go. That was really all the proof I needed that true rock 'n' roll existed here in Tidewater. A little later I discovered the band The Hydeouts, and thought, "Holy crap this is amazing, and these guys are from here??" Damn right! There are so many other bands I could mention as well that have lots of energy and great rock 'n' roll.
As far as “Trolling Bones” the movie went, I recall editing the Dead Aim segment for it and having a real interest in the history of that band. It really made me want to look deeper into the story of how things took place over the ‘80s decade as far as hardcore punk rock in Tidewater, contingent on all the other rock music that surrounded Tidewater throughout the decades as well. Really, all the bands that played the Trolling Bones concert night were really good. Plus, it was really cool they all played for free like that as well, really helping out, it was a fun night. So yeah, the Trolling Bones experience partially did have an affect on me; it was a fun concert film and a learning experience.
Andrea: While Paul Unger was working on “Trolling Bones,” he contacted me about what he should include within a brief segment of the movie that enc ompassed my musical era (mid-90s until now). When I watched the movie, I couldn’t help but think of how cool it would be to see the stories of those bands that I loved and grew up with on the big screen. When Paul asked Deb and I to be a part of this second endeavor I jumped at the chance.
Debra: I contributed some material for the “Trolling Bones” movie and was very inspired in general by Kelly Miltier and Pete Desnoyers’ efforts to reconnect with long-lost friends and start assembling an archive of material related to our music scene. But my love of history didn’t start with their project. As a history minor at ODU and later working for the state of North Carolina on their historical archives in the Outer Banks, I had always dreamed of being able to somehow document the amazing times I’ve lived through. As Andrea says, after seeing “Trolling Bones,” I couldn’t help but imagine a similar movie that would cover some of the later years in the scene, the years after that original wave of punk and New Wave bands like Tango Storm and Jerry’s Kids. When I met Paul and found that he shared my love of rock ‘n’ roll and history, I knew we could make it happen. Once Andrea agreed to become involved, pulling in her expertise and experience in the scene during the 90s, I felt we had a real story to tell, and with the combined resources of the three of us, we could pull it off. I’m getting ahead of myself on the story, however. The website, www.hardcorenorfolk.com, which was started by all three of us, was up and running for about six months before we got heavily involved with making the movie. The website was not influenced by Trolling Bones, I’d say. It actually came about after I started a Facebook page of the same name and began using it to promote local and national shows, and encouraging members to use the page as a forum and archive to share their old pictures and flyers.
Does the Hardcore Norfolk movie document Norfolk only?
Debra: No, and we want everyone to realize the music covered will not just be of the “hardcore” genre, though that is one sub-scene within the movie. Both Hardcore and Norfolk should be in “…”s. The original title “Hardcore Norfolk” came about in the mid-80s, when a group of young punks started a club called Connection Hall, booking all-ages hardcore shows on Hampton Blvd. in Norfolk and gave themselves that name. I was friends with some of those guys back in the day, and when Facebook started taking off, one of them began a group using that old name. I took over that group shortly after and we ended up co-opting the name for our whole project. It just made sense to me and summed up my whole attitude about our music scene. There have been many people who have been understandably confused by our title, and we hope this article will once again help clear up any misunderstanding. “Hardcore” should be thought of in the dictionary sense of the word: die-hard fan, stubbornly resistant to change, that sort of thing. And “Norfolk” should be thought of as the greater Norfolk area.
Andrea: It includes Norfolk and the surrounding cities on the Southside, as well as the influence our local bands have had nationally, and in some cases like The Candy Snatchers and The M-80’s, internationally. Although I did grow up on the Peninsula and started out seeing bands like Nocturnal Zoo and the Benevolent Swimmers at the (then) New American Theatre in Hampton, we kept the storyline on this side of the water.
What periods (ie 1950s-today) of local music are covered?
Andrea: The movie is covering roughly the beginning of rock ‘n’ roll until now, with a slight skim through the “Trolling Bones” era since that was covered in great detail already. We were lucky to have gathered great contacts since we started our www.HardcoreNorfolk.com website, and were able to interview big time names like Gary U.S. Bonds to tell the story of the Norfolk Sound and early rock in this area.
What styles of local music are featured?
Andrea: We mostly featured the gritty rock ‘n’ roll and underground garage rock/punk scene, but do cover some early soul, hardcore, metal, funk and the alternative/college rock genre.
Are bands such as States, Mason, Gary US Bonds, The Tropics and Combine included?
Andrea: When we started digging into the musical history of the area, we found there was so much to cover. Unless we had a 30 second to one minute blip on each band we couldn’t cover them all. We decided to go with the beginning of rock ‘n’ roll and specifically what became known as the Norfolk Sound. From there, we pretty much let our interviewees tell the story, and we focused on those bands and events that seemed most central to our particular scene. The bands that everyone wanted to talk about were hands down The Candy Snatchers and The M-80’s, with emphasis on groups like Waxing Poetics, Thin Lads, Buttsteak, Antic Hay, The Crums and The Hydeouts. Even if we personally loved a particular band, but they weren’t heavily talked about, we didn’t pursue them – I love “Picture Me With You” by The States and have had that single for years, but only one person mentioned them out of 100. Only two out of 100 mentioned my band (The Hustlers), so we were cut. Whereas, more than half mentioned The Candy Snatchers.
How did the idea do produce this movie come about?
Paul: In late 2009, I was learning more about the Hardcore Norfolk Facebook page and group. Sue Panique really taught me a great deal about the history, the greatness of this music, developing a real appreciation for it. Sue is awesome; she took me under her wing you could say, and kept encouraging me to keep filming local bands...she really has a great passion for music. Also, Deb and I would strike up conversations and noticed we shared a lot of common interest with both music and history. As the months went on in 2010, I kept watching my archive of footage growing by the numbers. That, added to the first launch we did of hardcorenorfolk.com, and it was in the back of my mind to do a movie maybe one day. Debra, Andrea and I knew we made a great team together, each one of us contributed to the website in our own unique way. By the end of the 2010 summer, I couldn't wait any longer, I asked, very kindly, for Deb and Andrea to be partners on a movie as well. I'm very grateful they said 'yes'. Andrea and Deb run a tight ship. I knew I wanted to do a movie with them, I knew they had that professional attitude about getting things done right and in a timely organized manner, along with the passion they have for this area's local rock 'n' roll music and it's history, it's a perfect team effort and the results will show this August 20th.
Andrea: Paul Unger knew how involved Deb and I have been on the scene and purchased the URL of www.hardcorenorfolk.com. Once the three of us started working together and realizes how well our skills meshed together—Deb became a great intake person and organizer, Paul did the graphics, videos and podcasts, and I did much of the writing and editing for consistency—and Paul asked us to get heavily involved [in the movie], we were thrilled.
Debra: Yes, Paul was already working, accumulating interviews and footage of current shows. After six months of success with our website, Andrea and I took the plunge and got heavily involved with the movie. We bought a boom mike in order to do group interviews, and committed ourselves 100% to helping Paul make the connections and gather the backing materials needed to make the film.
What were the parameters?
Andrea: We originally wanted to just concentrate on the late-80s until now—picking up where “Trolling Bones” left off—but ended up with so many great contacts that we figured we should delve into the Norfolk Sound story and go chronologically from there.
How did you select the bands, people and places?
Andrea: Keep in mind any three people would choose different interview subjects, but Paul, Deb and I came up with individual dream lists that encompassed a wide variety of musicians, fanzine editors, record label people, flyer makers and fans from all across the decades. As we began the interview process, our subjects would mention other people and bands we would cover and we would often follow up that way. We ended up interviewing close to 100 people and bands, and could have easily interviewed 100 more. We tried to show as much diversity in the area that we could, and did a lot of filming at old haunts like the Colley Cantina, Taphouse and Cogan’s, but also tried to cover spots in Virginia Beach like Mount Trashmore and the oceanfront, as well as the surrounding cities. We’re in restaurants, bars, recording studios, in front of port-o-potty’s, you name it.
Can you provide a list of bands, people etc?
Andrea: We are still in the editing process, but we mostly cover: Gary U.S. Bonds, Link Wray, Gene Vincent, Dead Aim, Frontline, Tango Storm, Jerry’s Kids, Thin Lads, Waxing Poetics, Buttsteak, Ant Man Bee, Antic Hay, Elvis From Hell, The M-80’s, The Candy Snatchers, Black Jesus, Big Bobby & The Nightcaps, The Unabombers and The Hydeouts. Again, we didn’t just want to have one-minute segment after one-minute segment on band after band—we wanted to tell a story of this area, and how all these bands weave together. We will be including many of the other bands through photos, flyers, songs and videos. People include Dex Romweber, Larry May, Vic Demise, Nathan Berger, DJ Joe and Melissa Pittman, Darryl Lewis, Glenn and Henry Gutierrez, Crizti, Patrick and Kim Walsh, Todd Owens, etc. We have a few surprise cameos and people that we don’t want to give away yet!
What lengths have you gone to interview various musicians?
Debra: I have personally sent one million Facebook or email messages to various musicians trying to coordinate group interviews. At least it felt that way.
Andrea: In order to interview Steve and Kim Baise who were a major part of this scene for 10 years, I flew out to Los Angeles with all of the camera equipment and interviewed them while staying at their house for a few days. I also did some guest interview segments of bands that were part of The Candy Snatchers history while out there. Paul and I went up to New York to interview Larry May and Dean Rispler, as well as a few assorted folks, and went to D.C. to get Kirk Marchand and Sean Epstein. The three of us went to Baltimore to interview Buttsteak, Scott Perryman and Leonard Clarke.
How is the film being edited? Explain the various segments.
Paul: All the interviews were shot on a Sony HDR-FX1, and many of the shows I taped from the past three years were shot on that same camera as well...that camera records live audio great, although it's HD, it's not exactly the cutting edge technology as it would have been probably four years ago...the result is still a great HD picture, nice and crisp. Hey, you work with what you got, but that camera served its purpose for us. I do want to point out, filming live shows was great, just a couple of small threats from people that didn't know me on camera in the crowds watching the bands, couple of pushes added in with a few beer cans thrown at the camera, but, people knew my face after a while, “Oh it's that dorky Unger guy with the camera again, he's alright I guess.” The bands have been great though! I never had one bullshit rock star attitude from anyone in this area in any of the bands...these are the bands that play out of passion and are cool as hell, and for that I'm very grateful to them.
Editing has been done on my favorite, Final Cut Pro 6, I love that program and version. Over the past two years I've become well acquainted with Adobe After Effects CS4, that program as far as I'm concerned is amazing; I have to say, it just does such better job than Apple's Motion program for animation. I kinda took a break from Flash and Illustrator for this movie, just used Photoshop and After Effects to bring those pictures from the day back to life. So far we've got about 8- to 9-TBs we've filled up...close to 150 hours of HD footage alone, mixed in with hundreds of scanned photographs, songs in .wav format, and close to probably 50 VHS converted files to AVI format—trust me, it takes up some space. And of course, my trusty Mac Pro, added in with a damn great team like Deb and Andrea...and you've got progress!
Debra: Though Paul does all the editing, and is doing an amazing job of assembling this incredible material, we are having frequent meetings to view our rough cuts and Andrea and I are involved in the process of choosing the right backing material to go with each segment. We continue to fine tune and try and include as much of the archival material as we can. As for segments, the movie will basically run chronologically, with a short segment on the roots in our area, the Norfolk Sound of the ‘50s and ‘60s, and the ‘70s soul of Church St., early New Wave and hardcore scene, then longer segments on the mid-80s and ‘90s, with a short ending segment on our scene today. Yes, we do still go out and support live music!
This would probably be a good time to mention that although unrated, the movie will contain nudity and adult language and content. It is definitely not one for the kiddies, but this will come as no surprise to those of us who lived through those years!
What are your individual roles?
Paul: All three of us are directors, partners, creative advisors, etc. But I must be honest, I'm glad Andrea and Deb took over interviewing people—thank goodness for that. I make sure those audio levels are right, the shot is in frame, the lighting is good, but the Ladies ask the questions usually. No one wants to hear me and my monotone voice. My job really at this point is to rock 'n' roll in the editing post production now, making sure Deb and Andrea get the rough cuts they need to see in a timely manner, edit until 4 a.m., wake up at noon and I've got my feedback and suggestions from Deb and Andrea ready to read in an e-mail. Each week we get together to watch a DVD of all the rough cuts of the movie, and the three of us go into deep thought and discussion...everything is taken into consideration, everything.
Andrea: My role has been to identify bands and key people to be interviewed from 1993 (the birth of The Candy Snatchers) until now, as well as gathering photos, videos and flyers for this time period. I also helped with contacting and gathering information from the early rock ‘n’ roll and Norfolk Sound days. I put the soundtrack together with the help of 22 area bands who were willing to donate the songs as a movie fundraiser. Dave Voightritter is the sound engineer, and Julie Paddock did the artwork for the CD, as well as the movie poster. Other than that, we are going through every minute of this with a fine-tooth comb. We have major decisions to make almost every day as to what is included, what is cut, and what else we need to get the job done.
Debra: Head cheerleader? Just joking, I never liked cheerleaders! We have learned as we go along and, basically, the three of us do EVERYTHING involved with making the movie. We all contribute what our time and talents allow. When it came time to interview people, Andrea can hold a boom mic like nobody’s business, and you’d better let me see the how the shot is framed! I know I drove Paul crazy with that! ;) Andrea already had a journalism background, but I became an interviewer too. I took on the task of keeping the legal release forms organized. Paul has spent ENDLESS hours reviewing the old tapes that people have turned over to us to find just the right clip to use. In other words, we just did what had to be done, what made sense. Specifically, I helped coordinate the ‘80s and Hardcore sections of the movie, but the tasks involved are endless and range from the tedious (endless emails organizing interview times and following up on gathering backing material) to the fabulous (attending interviews with some of my favorite bands and seeing the members and old friends reunite, sometimes for the first time in many years; an amazing experience!) Bottom line, we are three equal partners, and we insist on a majority agreement before any important decisions.
How many hours of interview footage have you filmed?
Paul: Roughly, I'd say about 50 hours, honestly.
Andrea: Our 100 interview subjects could talk anywhere from 10 to 60 minutes each. We re-watched every interview that was filmed and took copious notes, whether we were at the interview or not—due to timing, some interviews were all three of us, some were just one or two. But being able to watch and hear everything that was said allowed us to see themes and subject matter that were of most importance to our subjects.
Debra: I must say Andrea did 90% of that reviewing and note-taking. She has a lot more patience than I do and I found it incredibly frustrating watching the interviews and knowing all the wonderful content that wouldn't be used. Thankfully, I had a pretty good memory when it came to recalling specific quotes or passages I wanted to use from the interviews I attended.
How long will the final version be?
Andrea: We are trying to keep it under two hours, although it could easily be ten hours with all the footage and material we have.
How was the film financed? What is the estimated cost in terms of money and hours?
Andrea: Deb is the executive producer and I have kicked in some cash as well. It’s impossible to really estimate the hours, but I know I barely have time to do anything but this outside of my full-time job. Everything I do and talk about is movie related, and it probably takes up 20-25 hours (at least) a week. It’s the first thing I think about in the morning, and the last thing I think about at night. I have never worked harder or been more passionate about anything in my life. There is no sleeping in on weekends, watching TV or just gabbing on the phone with friends and family. Lately, I have been forcing myself to get out more so I don't get swallowed up whole. I would like to take this time to thank my boyfriend Stephen Marsh for being so loving and supporting, and staying with me through all of this—it isn’t pretty!
Debra: I still haven’t estimated my costs, but they are considerable. We have no outside funding; Andrea and I are covering all costs. Paul’s editing work would cost us a small fortune if we had to pay someone and I can’t begin to imagine the hours we have all put into this! Andrea is 100% correct, at this point, we eat, live and breathe this movie 24/7 and it’s been that way for months. One reason why I didn’t jump right in when Paul originally started filming was the knowledge that if I did it, I couldn’t do it halfway. I knew it would be incredibly challenging to cover all the material Andrea and I wanted covered and the project has only exceeded my expectations in that area.
What have been the challenges been in editing an entire local music scene's history into a film-length production?
Andrea: The hardest part has been falling in love with the stories and people and knowing we have to cut. Also having people contact us that want to be interviewed but we have too much already.
Debra: That’s it in a nutshell. I hope we will be forgiven for everything we DIDN’T include.
Paul: Yes, Deb and Andrea are correct on that one...you interview all these people telling you about their lives and how the music of the Tidewater area effects them and so on, so many great stories, so much. But sometimes you have to resign yourself to the fact that there is going to be material that is not relative enough to the movie's main theme, contingent on one point made or etc. Sometimes I edit small segments, show it to Deb and Andrea and we'll all think about it, discuss it and sometimes we decide it's just not relative enough, we have to leave it out. Yeah, that's definitely the hardest part.
Who contributed photographs and live movie footage?
Andrea: We have been so lucky, and have had a great group of people come through with unbelievable and never-seen-before footage that they are willing to share. Some of our photographers include Sam Sebren, Willie "Filth" Peele, Michele Starck Dinsmore, Sue Coyne, Danna Cullen, Kevin Johnson, Rob Burlingame, Holly Womack and more. Flyers came from all over, including batches from Rich Chinnock, Ruben Remulla and Becky Dearborn. Videos have been secured from Rob Katherman, Larry May, Joey Mishkofski, Ray T. Jones and Mike Bowen’s collection, and others like Brian Idle Diederich, Beth Austin, Jay Sanchez and Oscar Quiambao. Of course, Paul Unger took almost all of the recent video footage for the movie, and was at the helm for the interviews. And Deb and added a ton of photos and flyers from our private collection.
What do you hope local scenesters experience when they view the film?
Andrea: I hope local scenesters see that we really do have a scene and something to be proud of. I want people to realize Norfolk and its surrounding areas has been a true contributor to original rock ‘n’ roll on a national, and in some cases like The Candy Snatchers and The M-80s, an international level. And, if you see the movie and feel like we left your band or friends out, then I encourage you to make your own movie—I never thought I would be doing this, and it’s been a great experience!
Debra: Pride. I feel it every time I watch the rough cuts. And a little aching heart, knowing we can’t turn back the clock and regain all we’ve lost. I know of several musicians who have been inspired to play again after talking to us. That is almost reward enough right there.
What are the plans for the film beyond the Naro showing?
Andrea: We are planning to submit the film to some film festivals and then have a DVD release. Depending on Paul’s schedule, he will add bonus features. We would love to be able to show the movie in other major cities too.
Debra: Can you imagine a Hardcore Norfolk contingent at a SXSW showing?
What events are schedule in conjunction with the film?
Debra: There are some wonderful events happening in conjunction with the movie, and details and flyers for all can be found on our website, www.hardcorenorfolk.com. We are extremely excited to announce for the first time that a reunited Ant Man Bee will be performing a short set on the stage of the Naro immediately following the movie! We know energy will be high at this point and that nothing will take the place of some live music. Our old friends in Ant Man Bee have generously stepped up to the plate, have been rehearsing and will be ready to rock our worlds on August 20, They will be also be playing a gig that evening at The Belmont House of Smoke on Colonial Ave.
Sue Panique has done a fantastic job organizing several events to help celebrate the movie and our scene. She and Holly Womack have organized a photography show “Filth City: The Dirty Archives of Norfolk” for the Colley Cantina, which will kick off with a party on July 28 with The Larchmont Trash playing a live set. Sue and Holly have worked hard collecting a broad selection of photos representing our scene throughout the years. They have set aside a space for people to add their own photos, and I sure hope everyone does just that! The show will run through the month of August.
Sue and Billy England have organized an Open Mic night for the Thursday night prior to the movie, August 18th, at Colley Cantina. All are welcome to bring their instruments and join in the open jam. We’re hoping to see some old friends who may be in town to see the movie!
The Colley Cantina will have DJs playing both Friday night, Aug. 19 (Kris Hartley), and Saturday afternoon when the movie lets out (Jobber Joe).
QuiVa Productions has booked a hardcore show for Friday, August 19, at the Jewish Mother backstage on Granby St. It will feature Richmond’s White Cross, Va. Beach’s Dead Aim (reuniting for this show!), DC’s Dear Season, Norfolk’s The Kill Circuit. This is the show for the hardcore enthusiasts in our group.
The movie is a 1:00 p.m. matinee on Saturday, August 20, and that evening, in addition to the Ant Man Bee Show at the Belmont, there is a show at 37th and Zen with the reunited M-80’s (Eddie Pierce and Big Bobby & the Nightcaps), The Candy Snatchers, The Bottle Babies and The Hydeouts. Our music will be heard in Norfolk that night!
Information on all these events, as well as hotel and restaurant discounts for the weekend of the movie can be found on our website, www.hardcorenorfolk.com.
What did you learn about the music scene that you didn't previously know?
Paul: I'm discovering all these amazing bands, that honestly, I had never heard prior to four years ago...it's been great, tons of great original rock 'n' roll music in this area, I love it!
Andrea: I learned quite a bit about what this area was like before I arrived in 1991. I wish I could go back in time just a few years and have been around to see more bands like The M-80s, Antic Hay, Ant Man Bee and Buttsteak in their heyday, rather than arriving just as they were all ending. I also realized how special that whole Candy Snatchers era was, and how lucky I am to have been an intimate part of it.
Debra: I was reminded of all the many connections between the bands throughout the years. We discussed at one point doing a “family tree” to show how they are all interconnected. It is really amazing how this community interconnects and it’s pretty hard to keep it all-straight, but the end effect is a layering of experience that makes for a rich story. I learned that I’m not the only one who felt like what we had here was special somehow.
How do you think the film will be viewed outside of Hampton Roads?
Paul: Damn good question. In a way I've been wondering that myself, as time went on in the post production process I think we became a little at ease when we were seeing the story develop itself even more. This movie is really turning out to be great; it was a challenge though, editing this thing to make the viewer interested, even suppose if they never had been to Norfolk, VA, would most people like it? To be honest, I think they will, I really do.
Andrea: I think we have enough big names in the film—Gary U.S. Bonds, the stories of Link Wray and Gene Vincent, The M-80s and The Candy Snatchers—that people will be surprised and inspired by how much this area has contributed musically. I hope they learn more about the bands from here that they haven't heard of too. I also believe our themes are universal ones, with the friendships and a scene built through a love for rock ‘n’ roll, and watching the music industry change shape from the beginning of vinyl to the MySpace/Facebook era we’re in now. I also hope the movie makes our area more appealing for touring bands once again.
Debra: That’s the million dollar question. I decided a while ago, that for me personally, I will be more than content if the people who are featured in the movie are happy with it. Anything beyond that would just be icing on the cake.
What merchandise do you have planned? Please include and explain the CD soundtrack. DVDs, CDs, T-shirts, stickers and prices?
Andrea: The CD includes 22 area bands and never released before songs from The Candy Snatchers (from their last recording session that included Matthew Odietus), Big Bobby & the Nightcaps, The Bottle Babies and The Hydeouts, as well as tracks from Tango Storm, Dead Aim, Severance, Buttsteak, The M-80’s, Buzzard and more. The bands were kind enough to donate the tracks so it can serve as a movie fundraiser, and we will have a limited run of 750 CDs to sell the day of the movie. Because the movie itself is such an endeavor, we are just planning to have the CD and movie posters for sale the day of the movie. It will be cash only, $10/CD and $5/poster. We have been giving away T-shirts, pins and stickers, and will continue to make those in the future. Once we have the DVD completed, we will hopefully have a DVD release party and sell them at that time.