Short: A history of the first wave of Toronto punk rock and new wave music, from when the Ramones played in ‘76 through to when the cops gave Teenage Head the boot at “The Last Pogo” concert in December, 1978.
Long: A comprehensive history of the first wave of Toronto punk rock and new wave music, from the time the Ramones hit the stage at the New Yorker Theatre in 1976 until the infamous Last Pogo concert at the Horseshoe Tavern in 1978.
Over six years in the making, The Last Pogo Jumps Again delves deep into the whys and wherefores of an until now little known scene, uncovering a variety of influences that converged like a perfect storm to birth a lifestyle and brand of music that has left an indelible mark on Toronto.
While the world rocked out or were repulsed by the likes of NYC’s The Ramones and the UK’s Sex Pistols, Toronto had its very own stars, ignored by the local media, and laughed at by the mainstream. Whether it was the visceral thrills of Steven ‘Nazi Dog’ Leckie of the Viletones cutting his arms with shards of glass and picking fights with members of the audience, the artsy Roxy Music/Sparks sounds of The Dishes (the band
who were the first to put up hand-made handbills), the pop punk sounds of the Diodes, Hamilton’s Teenage Head and The Forgotten Rebels and their inimitable lead singers Frankie Venom and Mickey DeSadist, and London Ontario’s The Demics (who’s New York City has been voted one of the top 100 singles in Canada), the ever-heckled experimental sounds of The Scenics, the slick tightness of The Mods, the criminal minds that were The Ugly, the sweet-sounding pop of The B-Girls or the crassness and politics of The Curse (two of the very first all-women rock bands) — Toronto had a solid, creative, imaginative scene that made up its own rules.
They were the pioneers who broke down the doors.
They did something different.