There was a band with the unfortunate name of Scooby Groove.  They were a funk-o-metal band, but had a great reputation as being tight and talented as hell, and so I wrote them a letter.

Almost immediately, I received a demo tape as well as a home-recorded tape with some “unreleased” (even by demo tape standards) new songs.  There was a nice handwritten letter that indicated that the band would be interested in working with us.

I admit it.  I was a sucker for the funk-o-metal thing.  I liked that slick, slippery, slimy shit that bands like the Limbomaniacs and Heads Up and 24-7 Spyz were serving up in 1992.  

Yes.  I had a mullet.  And I shaved above my ear on one side.

Society is to blame.

Anyway, I dug the songs and I called the band and got one of the guys on the phone.  He was totally disinterested.  I turned on the hard sell, and asked which of the two songs I liked best he would feel more comfortable with us using – “Freak You Out,” which was from their initial demo tape and was a straight-ahead funk song, or “What You Keep Inside,” which was newer and heavier and opened with a pretty cool percussive passage that I really liked.

Again, he was totally disinterested.

The band was totally talented – excellent musicians.  I wrote them a letter and they responded immediately, enthusiastically.  I got the guy on the phone – can’t recall his name – and he barely wanted to talk.

Finally I said “Can I ask you a question?”


“You sound like you couldn’t care less about this.  Why did you send the demo?”

“It’s not that I don’t care,” he said, “it’s that we’re looking for a major deal.  We’re a good band.  We have fans.  We want a major deal.”

He was right – they were a good band.  But I couldn’t help a band – at all – who was looking for a major deal.  I hadn’t even put out a single record yet.  I politely excused myself from the conversation and never spoke to another funk-o-metal band again.  Or another metal band.  I wanted to start an indie label and instead I was dealing with managers and experienced music industry veterans and metal guys who would barely shake my hand. I liked straight-ahead indie rock better, and I definitely had more in common with the people.

Rich was right.  It was time to circle the wagons and start from scratch.

“You know, you should check out Alternative Press,” Rich said.  “They have a whole column where they review demo tapes.  In fact, I was reading the column last month, and this girl I went to high school with?  Her band got reviewed.  They’re called the Melting Hopefuls.”

“Yeah?” I asked, “was it a good review?”

“It was,” he said.

“So, umm, why not call her the hell up and ask for a copy of the tape for your friend who’s starting a record label?!”

“Huh,” he said. “I hadn’t even thought of that.”


So he called her up.  And she invited him to a show, where he picked up a copy of their demo tape and a media kit.  The day after the show, Rich called me on the phone and said “Dude, you’re gonna like this.”

~ by Al on January 16, 2009.

One Response to “funk-o-metal”

  1. […] Scooby Groove continued to gig around a bit, changed their name when funk-o-metal lost its popularity, and eventually fizzled.  At least one of the band members went on to play in The Mooney Suzuki, a pretty decent garagey-type band that is probably best known for “Alive And Amplified,” which was a song on a car commercial. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: