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Beat Street
By Todd S. Inoue

Call the Doctor: MTX's Dr. Frank (right) performs next Thursday (June 19) on KSCU.

Lounge Axe:
Smashmouth signs; Hi-Fi lounge shorts out

THE HOT WORD around town last week was that Smashmouth had been signed to Interscope Records (home of Black Street and Tom Jones). A quick call from guitarist Greg Camp, and one to Interscope, confirmed the rumor. "They gave us 100 percent creative control over the record cover, so a friend and I are doing the cover," says Camp. "It's a picture of all of us in my car--a '64 Ford Falcon Wagon going to a gig in space."

Some former KOME DJs, Carson and Two Cigs Jim, played some Smashmouth for the program director at KROQ. The station quickly added "Walking on the Sun" to its rotation. "Word got around that KROQ had picked up two tracks by this unsigned band, and Interscope tracked us down that night," said Camp. A meeting was arranged the next day with label reps, including Jimmy Iovine. The band returned to San Jose with a two-record deal waiting in the fax tray.

"I've been sitting around San Jose for a long time," said Camp, "but it's time to move. I can't wait to bring what I've worked on forever to other parts of the country and the world." Drinks are on them until the end of the century. Interscope plans to release Smashmouth's full-length debut, Fush Yu, Mang, on July 7. A CD-release party is set for July 11 at the Usual in downtown San Jose.

Hi-Fi Down and Out

Could two guys with surgical and administrative backgrounds make a splash in the club business? I asked that question in 1995 when Larry Hayes and Jerry Wilson bought JJ's Blues Downtown and converted it into Scalawag's. By 1996, Scalawag's had closed; later that year, it was resurrected as the Hi-Fi Lounge by popular DJs Rick Preston, Julius Papp and Toon's former manager Steve Hoey all helping out.

Three weeks ago, the Hi-Fi pulled its own plug. Hoey says Hayes and Wilson didn't understand the nature of nightclub business. "They had a wake-up call," said Hoey. "They learned it was a lot more hostile than they thought. There's so much you have to worry about in downtown San Jose." Wilson and Hayes couldn't be reached for comment. Preston, who was instrumental in constructing Hi-Fi's identity, wouldn't go on record with a comment.

One, two, check out the Spearhead crew

Spearhead performs an early show on Sunday (June 15) at the Usual. The doors open at 7pm, and the show starts at 8. ... Next Thursday (June 19), Mr. T. Experience lead singer/vocalist Dr. Frank will perform an acoustic set on Tyler and Speardog's Neighborhood radio program on KSCU (103.3FM). The new MTX album, Revenge Is Sweet and So Are You, comes out in August. The show broadcasts from 6 to 10pm.


Last Saturday's Soulicious show at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds was a lost cause; read the full review.

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From the June 12-18, 1997 issue of Metro.

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