|How society measures success is relative.
Andrew, Benny, Dave and Tony never got the HIT records, sold out tours and great wealth that they deserved.
Their story is one of a five year journey filled with achievements and disappointments.
In 1980 four scuffling musicians decided to stop being sidemen and formed ‘Street Kid’, a rock-funk band with great songwriting and vocals. They wrote, recorded and performed original music that always made audiences happy. Along the way they became a family of four brothers who are still friends two decades later and still, separately, playing music.
As their one man road-crew I can attest that Street Kid gigs were, in the words of Allen Touissant “Fun time”. They were a crackerjack live band who could stop and turn on a dime. Andrew drums and Tony (aka “Dr.Funk”) bass, were an incredible rhythm section, always “in the pocket”. They were as close as the Bronx would ever come to Motown’s Benny Benjamin and James Jamerson. Dave could make his guitar wail, shriek or cry and after un-leashing a bitchin’ solo, could lay down some of the coolest R&B rhythm parts… so-o-o clean and tasty!
Benny? This Rican sure could rock. Copping a Gospel/Soul vibe on his electric piano in addition to driving audiences wild with his on (and off) stage antics: jumping from the bandstand to dancing and singing on top of the bar (who do ya think held his mic cord?).
Songs? Vocals? Dave and Benny wrote dozens of tunes filled with melodies and passion. The four part vocal harmonies were ASTOUNDING! Like a choir of funky angels.
“We were a fountain of creative energy” said Benny, “and live we always gave three hundred percent”. Dave recalls “Benny and I were the songwriters, Andrew and Tony were the arrangers. It was a great balance of original ideas”.
Some individuals were immense supporters of the band: Eddie Solan, owner and head engineer of Backstreet Studios in “Da Bronx”. As Dave puts it “Eddie was like the fifth member of ‘Street Kid’. He never asked for a penny for recording over twenty of our tunes. Just come in and we’ll do your stuff”.
Gig-wise, the band had regular ports of call. In Hastings on the Hudson, the “Moonlight Mile”. In Pelham, “Bendover’s where silliness counts”). New York City’s “Home” Bar (thanks Kenny Gorka!) and “C.D.’s Cafe” in Norwalk Connecticut (Hey CD, how’s the Hammond B-3?).
Of special mention would be the “Crazy Horse Cafe” in New Rochelle. Ably run by Vinny Pastore. “Vinny definitely kept the band working regularly” said Benny “also, he encouraged bands to write and perform their own music”. In an industry where most clubowners are cockroaches, Vinny was a Prince.
The music on this disc is from 1980 to 1982. Flat-out rockers like “Nothing’s Ever Forever” and “Shot in the Dark”. Ballads such as “Waiting Game”. Reggae with “Stand Your Ground” and blue eyed soul in “Have no Fear”. Street Kid’s music is from the heart, as the best always is…..