Tuesday, May 26, 2009

More from Jay Laughlin on the history of Turning Point

Turning Point at Club Pizazz, Philadelphia PA, January 1989, Photo: Jeff Ladd

Jay TP brings us more of the Turning Point story in our on-going retrospective on one of NJ's best. -Gordo DCXX

As far as us playing out, the reason we played at the Anthrax or in DC or in Pennsylvania was because there really weren't that many places to play in NJ. There was really just City Gardens. We were supposed to play Scott Hall but I think it got shut down. But we did go out to Pennsylvania. I remember some place in Bethlehem, either Wally's or Oliver J's that was cool. I remember there was a Subway shop up the street and that was the first time I saw a Subway. We'd eat a Subway and go rock out.

We did play a place called the Pipeline in Jersey City a few times. That place was in a really shitty neighborhood. I remember one of my friends from high school drove up in his parents car to see us there and they had one of the first ever "car phones", you know, like one of those huge brick type things. He parked right across the street from the club and when we finished our set and he went outside to leave the car was gone. We called the cops and they said they said they knew where the car probably was but they really don't go into that part of town and that they probably stole the car because it had a car phone. Needless to say he never got his parents car back.

One show really sticks out, a big show. The Icemen were headlining, it was the Fall Brawl in D.C. at Wust Hall. So many people came out to that man, it was sick. We took the cover shot for the Jade Tree discography at that show, I think we were just messing around in the lobby. Nick was always good about bring a camera along for all of our road trips and taking a bunch of photos. I remember watching The Icemen, and I was obviously still into drums so I wanted to watch Mackie. He had his cymbals like as high and as far out as they could go. It was a crazy set up and he was unbelievable. I just watched him from the side of the stage and was blown away.

Steve Crudello with Turning Point at the Anthrax, 1988, Photo: TP

I think it was around this time when we split with Steve on guitar and went back to being a four piece with just me on guitar. I really can't remember the exact reason we kicked Steve out of the band. I'm pretty sure he was starting to be late to practice and shows and stuff. This is pretty funny now, but I remember we would be running late to a show and Steve would insist we stop off somewhere to get coffee and an apple pie or something and Skip would get so pissed at him. Pissed over Steve getting coffee. So great.

I guess we thought he wasn't as dedicated to the band as we were decided to go back to the original four piece. He wasn't really in the band that long. I'd guess about a year or so. It's always shitty when you kick somebody out of a band, but I don't remember any real animosity at the time. Regardless, we now live a few blocks from each other and are still friends.

At some point in the mix of things, Steve had moved up to NYC and also played with Gorilla Biscuits. (Editor's Note: we brought this up with Jay because very little documentation of this exists, and while we knew it to be true, there has been little detail about his coming and going.) What happened was that we had become friends with the GB guys from playing with them. We would stay with Walter sometimes when we were in the city. Steve stayed tight with them, and he ended up playing bass with them for a few shows. But there wasn't anything weird with Steve leaving GB as far as I heard. I think he just filled in for a handful of shows. I just remember thinking it was cool that he was gonna get to play with GB, that was wild. Like, "damn man, you are playing with them...so cool."

We continued on playing out, and writing what would become the material on the LP...

Jay with Turning Point at the Fall Brawl in DC, Photo: Dave Brown


brian said...

What about G.Wilikers in Pennsauken NJ?

I'm pretty sure i saw TxP play there at least once. that place was like an infamous nazi skin hangout spot.

jimmy said...

they did a reunion show in 94 at gwilikers......what a shit hole that place was!

Anonymous said...

The Pipeline was in Newark, and it was a pretty bad part of town.