A few days ago, on one of the message boards I frequent, a poster asked for some skaters from the 80’s to suggest some tracks for an 80’s skate compilation he was making. I went through my memories and listed 5 tapes that were always being played on my half-pipe as a kid. After I posted the list I noticed there was no Dead Milkmen on the list….anywhere. Well, perhaps because it is December and as the Counting Crows suggest, everyone is more nostalgic in December, or maybe because I don’t think I’ve heard it in 10 years. So I fired up my p2p app of choice and promptly downloaded Bucky Fellini for a listen.
The Dead Milkmen will always be remembered; but it will be because of Punk Rock Girl. A blessing and a curse I suppose. However, if you say Dead Milkmen to me almost immediately I will sing “All right…Kill the Muthafucker….Gather round me everybody…..lemme tell you who I am…..cause I’m a Big Time Operator….operating through the land…I’m a big time operator and they call me Howard Sam.” Yes, IMO, Big Time Operator is the greatest Dead Milkmen song ever. Drugs, cussing and a guitar solo sung by Joe…great moments in American music. Bucky Fellini was released in 1987 and I was a dirty little skate rat in the 8th Grade desperately searching for my version of individuality….by riding skateboards and wearing the skater uniform and the skater haircut and listening to the skater soundtrack….naturally. Many hours were logged in my bedroom listening to Bucky Fellini on my boombox.
It’s just such a fun album and to this day I can recite all of the words to Instant Club Hit. So, after spending the afternoon listening to the mp3’s I stopped by my local record store only to find they don’t carry Bucky Fellini, so I settled for the greatest hits collection Death Rides a Pale Cow, rolled down the windows turned up the stereo and…dunanunanunanut ALL RIGHT! dunanunanunanut KILL THE MUTHAFUCKER! dunanunanunanut HAHAHAHAHAHA dunanunanunanut UGHHHHH…
Sadly, in March of 2004, Dave Blood (bass) committed suicide. In his memory and the Milkmen took the stage for a couple of nights in Philly in his memory. Proceeds were donated to a variety of mental health organizations and to a Serbian monastery that Schulthise supported.
Joe Talcum is currently in Philadelphia punk band The Low Budgets.