Archive for May, 2012

T-Shirts available soon!

Posted: May 28, 2012 in 21st Century

We’re excitedly counting down the days until our CD release party in July — if the response and the demographics involved is any indication, it looks like this is going to be a reunion of old friends more than anything else! Like any self-respecting 21st Century rock band, we are going to have a merchandise table at this show, and the above photo shows one of the items that will be available for sale. We had considered walkers, canes, recliners, golf bags and toilet seats with our photos on them (that’s right, so that you can sit on my face!), as well as bottle openers and assorted “herbal paraphernalia” for your smoking pleasure — but we have settled on t-shirts and CDs.

At the Vancouver 80s Rock Reunion, Barry Samuels reminded me that CDs have gone the way of the dinosaur & are now virtually obsolete what with the established practice of downloading mp3s from the Internet. However, I pointed out to him that the majority of our so-called fan base is of “a certain age” and would prefer a physical CD that you can hold in your hand & read at your leisure. What do you think, gang? A souvenir on your living room shelf, rather than a damned sound file on your computer? Now of course, for the technologically-inclined, downloads will positively be available here and on our Official Website, but tangible goods are certainly our priority.

And speaking of good old capitalistic merchandise, rumour has it that actual Sparkling Apple t-shirts will be once again on sale, after an absence of thirty years. You can get them at the CD Release Party as well as upcoming shows, but a Sparkling Apple Store will soon be set up so that you can order crap online for a low low price while quantities last. Apple Swag!

That’s right, ” toll-free, bite-sized, ready-to-wear and comes in all sizes. A fully-equipped, factory-authorized, hospital-tested, clinically-proven, scientifically- formulated medical miracle. Pre-washed, pre-cooked, pre-heated, pre-screened, pre-approved, pre-packaged, post-dated, freeze-dried, double-wrapped, vacuum-packed with an unlimited broadband capacity” (George Carlin)

Art models one of our 1977 Sparkling Apple t-shirts. Anyone still have one of these?

Sparkling Apple onstage at the Vancouver 80s Rock Reunion, held at 560 on May 17, 2012. Lisa Freakrock photo.

Talk about a Blast From the Past! On the evening of May 17, 2012, crowds of aging rockers converged on the 560 club (former location of A & B Sound on Seymour Street in Vancouver BC) for the Vancouver 80s Rock Reunion.

Ray Roper. Photo by VICTORboy.

The party of the year was organized by Lisa Poulson, Linda Eckess (a.k.a. Lovely Linda) & Darby Mills (lead singer of Headpins) and was an unqualified success. So many old friends and musicians were there for this gala event, that it’s impossible to namecheck them from memory — I might leave somebody out! But the appearance of faces from the past was like going back in Mr. Peabody’s Wayback Machine, and big hair was conspicuous by its absence! More photos can be seen HERE and HERE.

After a typically raucous Ladies Night celebration (girls just wanna have fun) featuring some suitably endowed male strippers, the Ray Roper Project amazed the crowd with a tight and telepathic performance, followed by a storming & rocking set by Headpins. Original lead guitarist Brian “Too Loud” McLeod died of cancer 20 years ago, so his current replacement is the incredible Tony Dellacroce — otherwise the personnel was the familiar band lineup featuring Darby Mills, Ab Bryant, Bernie Aubin, with the addition of keyboardist/guitarist Alfie Gilpin. “Don’t It Make You Feel Like Dancing”, “Turn It Loud” and a monumental version of “People” brought back some happy memories.

Darby Mills of Headpins, wearing the commemorative Vancouver 80s Rock Reunion t-shirt. Photo by VICTORboy

Taking the stage after an awe-inspiring & memorable Headpins set, local legend Al Harlow (currently with Prism) proceeded to rock the house with a trio of songs that ended with Prism’s “Take Me to the Kaptin”! (Kevin Swain was deputized as bass player) A class act! Al, by the way, was once a member of the Seeds of Time, so his rock lineage goes back to the days when dinosaurs roamed the earth. And of course Sparkling Apple played on the same bill as Seeds of Time on one occasion (for the SA/SOT connection, the poster can be seen HERE.)

Al Harlow. Photo by VICTORboy

And then it was time for Sparkling Apple to sleepily emerge from hibernation and turn the evening into a celebration of RAWK! Although the rest of the musicians chose to relive their past and keep things on a serious level, Sparkling Apple were our usual playful and mischievous selves. We started off a 3-song set with the feelthy bar-room version of “Let’s Dance”, followed by a Robin Trower classic, “Too Rolling Stoned”. (At the end of the tune, Tony from Headpins enthusiastically yelled from stage right, “TROWER!! YEAH!) We ended our appearance with “Shakin’ All Over”, which lumbered uncontrollably into the Whalley National Anthem, “Gloria” (a song which had the by-then inebriated crowd singing along). For whatever reason, the club was scheduled to shut down at 1 AM – with that in mind, we cut our medley short at 12:55 so that Simon Kaos could perform the last song. We’re not sure what actually transpired at this point, as we had to exit the building & have a Seinfeld-like adventure in the parking garage across the street. (Rumour has it that Tracy Masson got up onstage to sing with the Ray Roper Project.)
A grand time was had by all who attended – might this be an annual event?

From the Vancouver 80s web page:
“A night to celebrate and remember those who passed before us with an ALL STAR ROCK JAM featuring the Ray Roper Project and your favorite 80s acts like The Headpins, Sparkling Apple, Simon Kaos and many more!”

A silent auction was held to raise funds for the BC Coalition of Music Education.)

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Lisa Freakrock photo.

Art as seen from the drums. (Colin POV)


Posted: May 10, 2012 in 21st Century, Gigs, New CD, Rock n Roll

Great news — we now (pardon the pun) have a sponsor, namely our trusted community newspaper, The Surrey Now. Thanks to Now publisher Marlyn Graziano, we are now able to advertise our CD Release Party in the Now Newspaper. Now of course, I do work as a graphic designer at the Now, so I imagine I had a bit pull there. What I do for a living can be seen HERE. So, as far as seeing my name in the paper, the ad at the end of this post will run in the Now at least once a week.

Now, then… for those of you who haven’t been paying much attention to this blog, this is our opportunity to reiterate:

Sparkling Apple will be releasing our brand new CD “Hard Core Apple” this summer, and to celebrate, we will be holding a gala CD release party on July 22nd at 2pm in Pancho’s Cabaret in Surrey. “A CD?” you say, “Aren’t CDs obsolete now that you can download tunes on the Internet”. Our response is a simple “Hell, yeah!” We never got to release a CD before, so why should their disappearance from the marketplace spoil our fun and influence our decision?” Judging from the sales of our 45s on eBay , these silver platters ought to become collectors’ items in no time anyway — we will naturally be selling these on our website as well as at the merchandise table at our upcoming appearances.  However, in order to get one of these puppies early without the hassle of shipping costs and postal delays, we urge you to come to our CD Release Party in  Beautiful Downtown Whalley.  For the insignificant cost of a ten-dollar ticket, you will not only receive entry to the party, but a shiny new Sparkling Apple CD as part of the bargain! In addition, the fabled Sparkling Apple will stumble to the stage and perform an ancient form of music not heard in these parts for many years — rock and roll! Plus, we will be offering free food as well as all the sights, sounds, & smells of the Whalley Experience.  The bar is officially open, and will remain so until Art’s supply of Budweiser is depleted.

So where do you get tickets? I’m glad you asked that — tickets are available on our Facebook event page, right here on the Official Sparkling Apple Blog (leave a comment on here and we’ll get back to you ASAP), or from Captain Maniac himself at At this point, tickets are threatening to be sold out soon, so get yours while they’re still available. Hey, you could grab a pantload of tickets cheap and then be a scalper in the Flamingo parking lot, flogging these for 50 bucks a pop! Who says there are no jobs left in today’s fragile economy? (Jeez, I should get a Canada Council grant just for coming up with that suggestion.)

OK, we’re done here. Have a good day, and keep on rockin’,
Captain Maniac