1980 - 1981
Formed in their senior year at Oak Hills High School in Cincinnati, Ohio… Mike Huegen (bass), Jeff Nagel (vocals), Pat Frohn (drums) and William Weber (guitar) were collectively the class outcasts. Mike, Pat and William all knew each other since their sophomore year when each of them were learning their instruments. Weekend ‘jam’ sessions would consist of late ’60’s and early to mid-’70’s heavy rock songs. Through reading such publications like Creem Magazine, Rock Scene and Hit Parader… they quickly identified with the growing punk rock movement.
Through junior year, the lads were seen walking the hallways sporting safety pins, ripped jeans, leather jackets and buttons with the names of English Punk bands. Mikes sister (who was a couple years older) had several ‘new wave’ albums she lent him, expanding his ear to the more diverse English acts. By senior year they would assemble in Pat’s grandmothers basement and hash out punk covers by the Ramones, the Clash, the Sex Pistols, the Dead Boys and other such acts. They called themselves 'The Spaztics' (from a line in the Joe Jackson song 'Sunday Papers'). William insisted it be spelled it with a 'Z'...
The only gig they played was a sock hop in their schools cafeteria in late January ’81. They were allowed a short 8 song set.. which they polished to a shine through countless practices. They were scheduled to play in-between the sets of a rival schools Top 40 band. The last song of the rival bands first set, the Spaztics played along and made noise… collecting curiosity seekers in the process. With most of the senior class gathered around them in a horseshoe pattern, the Spaztics launched into the set feet first and surprised everyone… including themselves. At the end of the last song, William took a no-name $100 Gibson Explorer copy that he painted in a Jackson Pollack style… and smashed it into the floor. A spark ignited in all the members… their first performance…was a smash. They broke up well before graduation day, for differences in direction (in a cover band?). Three weeks after school was finished, William left Cincinnati for the glitzy Hollywood life style… The band would get together anytime William was visiting in town, running through the set and recalling their ‘glory day’. What you are hearing is a cassette recording of a rehearsal in late December of ’80.