Category Archives: Dino!

Dino Remembers: The Worst Valentine’s Day Party Ever

[As you may be aware, Dino Manonne is a man of many adventures and exploits, peaks and nadirs, (near) successes and catastrophic failures, all of which make him a vast mountain range of experience.  From time to time, he sits down and types some of them out for us: Dino Remembers– Jesse]




A Total Fucking Waste of My Time: I Blow My One Chance of Collaborating with and Fucking Goldie Hawn

So it’s Valentine’s Day, 1981 or ’82. Don’t quite remember because, again, I was pretty fucked up and 1972 until 1985 feels like it all happened over a weekend. Doesn’t matter.

But anyway, we’re at Clive’s house for his Valentine’s Day shindig, which back in those days was basically a fuck fest. I am very lucky to have been invited to this party- no idea how it happened. Crystal Grass* was never a “big deal” at any point, I’ll freely admit. But I suppose in the music business or any business it helps to “know people”, and we certainly knew people who allowed us to score some high quality “party favors”, which was certainly another large part of Clive’s parties.

So it’s a fun night, we’re up our own noses, schmoozing, boozing, and I see Goldie Hawn. Now, I was certainly a fan, and on top of that, she’d been talking to Clive about trying out another record, because I mean every fucking movie star tried out a record in those days, so I’m thinking I can get in on all of that, if you catch my drift.

So I amble over there, probably white-nosed and google eyed, but fuck it. It’s a fucking party and it’s not like everyone else there wasn’t a jittering freak, too. I’m talking like 6 words at once- basically like, “this is going to be both a chance for Goldie to break out again and for a new direction for the band we shouldn’t be thinking too much about all this fucking bullshit space or cowboy shit we need get back to thick cuts and thick jams and shit and “Goldie” was a pretty solid album but it was like fucking 4 or 5 years too late and like it could’ve been more thick if you feel me like it sounds like she’s skipping in a fucking garden for some of those tracks she needs to be like screaming you know fucking primal grooves if you feel me because that’s the thing these days Clive is shit is fucking plastic like we need goop on our tracks you know what I mean like I can see like Goldie like standing over a fucking manhole cover like fucking hefting it up and screaming down into the gutter at the fucking rats and vermin and alligators you feel me and like they’re making this wretched fucking retort roaring back up at her and you just put like a hefty fucking beat on top of that right and it’s fucking see-saw this fucking you know balance between good and evil but there’s a bit of each in both if you know what I mean Clive I’ve got the fucking tapes I’ve been laying this shit down Clive you feel me?”

And what was so great about those days was Clive was not entirely opposed to the idea, based on my pitch, and I was getting some fucking traction. Goldie wasn’t completely on board but then again, what the fuck did she know about music, anyway?

So I’m feeling pretty alright, it’s Valentine’s Day, it’s Clive’s party, let’s fucking party. There was a band there, which I think I was actually supposed to be a part of, but again, back then people just kind of did whatever the fuck the wanted. So I’m trying to warm up to Goldie because I’m fucked up and I wanna jam, schmoozing some more with Clive because I need to get my name on something that isn’t just B level back up shit.

Then the band is playing, and Clive, whose now as totally out of his fucking gourd as I am, for some reason wants me to get up and sing some shit or something. I don’t really know for sure anymore. So fuck it, sure, let’s sing a song or whatever. But at this point I’m just thinking about Goldie, seal the fucking deal. So I stumble up there and I’m just going to fucking nail it:

So that’s my big fucking oeuvre, which I’m pretty convinced as gone over swimmingly. It has not. In fact, the general atmosphere of uncontrolled libidinousness has freaked Goldie the fuck out, and she now has changed her mind about not only working with me but with the whole album. Not good.

It was these sorts of things which, in looking back, definitely contributed to my early exit from the band and the first of a few hiatuses from the business. But by the same token, fuck it, you know?

By Dino

*Dino was keyboardist and back up singer for Crystal Grass from 1976-1981, a group led by singer/songwriter Steve Leach.

Dino Remembers: Chip Tahoe and the Semi-Tones

[As you may be aware, Dino Manonne is a man of many adventures and exploits, peaks and nadirs, (near) successes and catastrophic failures, all of which make him a vast mountain range of experience.  From time to time, he sits down and types some of them out for us: Dino Remembers– Jesse]



A Total Fucking Waste of My Time: Chip Tahoe nearly Rips off Columbia Records

So it was about 1980/1981.  Some time around there.  Everyone in Hollywood was coked out of their fucking minds, Travolta had just come out with that awful mechanical bull movie and so suddenly looking like a gay cowboy was IN.  And like “IN” like a fucking BOMB, you feel me?  Like, I remember going out with Steve Leach* to some stupid club where all the kids looked like they were Space Cadets one week, then the next they were all Rhinestone Cowboys.  But in all honesty, this could’ve been months later since I was just as coked up as anyone else.

But anyway, cowboys, country boys, South south south, all that.  Who the hell knows why?  But for a while it was all disco cowboys, at least among the set I was hanging out with (again, my set was into some pretty heavy shit back in the day, so who knows for sure).  But the Band had done okay, I was trying to get into more of a production role as well as perform, so I was hanging around Clive Davis as much as I could, who at that time was giving some consideration to these sort of Urban Cowboy types, maybe make a record or something.

Just so happened that there was a bar where we’d hangout.  Nothing special, but drinks were cheap and they didn’t really care what you did so long as you didn’t mess with the wrong types.  One of the bartenders was this guy, Chip.  He wasn’t just doing the whole “Hip Funky Country” shit, he WAS that, from Oklahoma or Arizona or some bullshit like that.

He was alright, and let’s just say he was a ‘facilitator’ for certain ‘things’ that we needed to ‘procure’, and those ‘things’ were ‘prime quality’ and generally ‘free’.  So we go out there, Steve and me, shoot the shit about Clive thinking about putting out a funky cowboy record, and Chip overhears and says he moonlights as a singer, open mic nites and all that.  Now, I sorta owe this guy a favor or two since I rarely paid for anything at this bar, and he seemed like he meant it when he told us how good he was, so I figure what the hell.  Let’s tell Clive.

So first of all, Clive doesn’t know who I am, because I’ve been ‘hanging around’ but I haven’t said much, so he’s a little skeptical when I come right up to him and tell him I found a guy who’s a Funky Cowboy.  But it’s 1980, we’re all fucked up ALL the time, so some crazed  keyboardist from some minor band in a minor subsidiary of your company coming up to you and shouting at you about some guy called Chip Tahoe who’s a funky Cowboy and has more snow than Santa isn’t that far out from your usual daily experiences.  And it doesn’t sound like a terrible fucking idea either.  “Sure, why not?” he says.

ALSO just so happens that Kenny Rogers is hanging around, for reasons I don’t know.  He’s just come out with “Gambler”, or whatever the fuck it was, so he’s living it up, partying with everybody in LA (that son of a bitch can PARTY, let me tell you).  Now Chip was clearly not quite what he told us he was, because this song he’s sure is going to be a hit sounds an AWFUL lot like “Gambler”.  But Kenny is THERE partying with us, and he says he doesn’t care how similar it sounds.  “Hell” he says, “You boys can use my fucking band if you want!”.

So we get set up, everything’s good to go (minus obviously that we’re fucked up) and….

Yeah, I know, a fucking DISASTER.  And that’s the BEST FUCKING TAKE AND THE ONLY FUCKING SONG WE COULD EVEN RECORD.  Couldn’t release it, and I’m surprised I didn’t burn my copy.  But the thing is, we STILL bring this piece of shit to Clive because we figure we put some effort into it so maybe there’s still something we can work out.  Noooooo fucking way.  Because Clive might indulge, but he didn’t let it turn into the fucking shit show everyone else did.

So that about ends any dreams I have of becoming a producer.  Chip gets pissed and thinks I sabotaged him, so one day at this fucking bar he pulls a knife on us and chases us out.  Steve starts to “worry about your decision making recently” which more or less sets the stage for when I eventually was kicked out of the band.  So I guess the lesson is audition someone before you try to convince your boss to let you produce their record…..

By Dino

*Dino was keyboardist and back up singer for Crystal Grass from 1976-1981, a group led by singer/songwriter Steve Leach.

Dino and the Pocket Big Band: New Recordings!



We all got shit to do so let’s keep this brief.  Yeah, the title says it.  We’re recording an album.  It’s taking longer than we thought.  But fuck it.  So here’s one demo we got done..

Rose Marie

Now just remember that this is a fucking DEMO.  So that means that its not TOTALLY done yet, okay?  Its like a rehersal, like the first time the boys get together to play through it.  It goes without saying that its not the final product, okay?  Yeah I know I don’t sound as solid as normally.  I was sick.  So fuck you and fuck off if you’ve got a problem.

But anyways, there it is.  More to come.

By Dino Mannone