I Just Want Some Skank

I thought I'd kick the weekend off with a couple of my favorite high school-era punk bands: The Circle Jerks, Fear, and JFA. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that these bands are among the first to take punk in a dumber direction. Don't get me wrong; I love these bands and I mean that in the best possible way. I'm just saying, generally, there wasn't the angry youth feeling that came from some of the British punk bands. I get more of a feeling of poking a stick at the middle class from which they came. Maybe a recognition of the hypocrisy. I dunno. All I can say without a doubt is my skater buddies and I loved these bands and other LA-area punk bands. Their music was better suited to skateboarding, then was, say, the Clash.

The Circle Jerks

The Circle Jerks formed circa 1979 in Hermosa Beach, CA. Lead vocalist Keith Morris was an original member of Black Flag, co-founding the band with Greg Ginn. He recorded the "Nervous Breakdown" EP with them before leaving the group in 1979. Morris formed the Circle Jerks along with guitarist Greg Hetson, bassist Roger Rogerson (a classically trained guitarist), and drummer Lucky Lehrer. Their debut album, "Group Sex," was released in 1980 on the Frontier Records label; its fourteen songs totaled out at about fifteen minutes.

Live Fast Die Young.mp3
World Up My Ass.mp3
Deny Everything.mp3


Fear formed in 1977 with Lee Ving and bassist Derf Scratch searching for a drummer and guitarist. After the band's 1982 debut release, "The Record," Ving fired Derf and replaced him with Flea (yeah, that Flea). Guitarist Philo "The Foot" Cramer and drummer Spit Stix left after the band's 1985 disk, "More Beer." The two members cited financial disputes with Ving as well as personality conflicts with his "right wing" beliefs.

New York’s Alright if You Like Saxophones.mp3
Let’s Have A War.mp3


JFA (Jodie Foster's Army) formed in 1981, rising out of the Arizona and Southern California skateboard culture. The original members were Brian Brannon (vocals), Don "Redondo" Pendleton (guitar), Michael Cornelius (bass), and Mike "Bam-Bam" Sversvold (drums). Pendleton and Cornelius knew each other from shows around Phoenix and from skateboarding. Bam-Bam later joined after meeting Pendleton at an "Industrial Dance" in Phoenix. He was responsible for the band's name, which is a reference to his second-cousin's, John Hinckley, Jr., attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan.

Walk Don’t Run.mp3 (Ventures cover)
Axed at Howards.mp3


Various incarnations of these bands still sporadically tour and release music. Check their sites for more information....


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