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Dave Waggoner plays Farfisa organ and sings lead vocals, Gene Balabon plays guitar and sings lead vocals, and Denny Johnson plays bass guitar and sings backing vocals. At The Ritz, Dave and Denny meet Pete Huber, a drummer from The Gremmies, a band that had just broken up due to their singer Jim Larkin leaving the group to take over as lead singer for The Rave Ons, as the group had lost their lead singer Lonnie Knight due to his family moving from Minneapolis to Detroit. Pete Huber joins the newly forming group on drums.
The band plays their first live job under the name, The New Gremmies. The band also plays under the name The Scoundrels for a very short time period, named by the group.
Gene Balabon finishes up his schooling, gets married and leaves the band. Tryouts are held for a new lead guitar player and Bill Jordon is hired after he auditions. This version of the band lasts for four months. Also joining South 40 are three members of The Rave Ons: Lonnie Knight joins Jokers Wild on lead vocals.
Denny contacts Greg Springer from The Illusions and invites him to join the band. Denny had seen Greg in the band and knew he was a good keyboard player and singer. Greg accepts the offer. Jokers Wild are now a five-piece band once again and gain in popularity by adding a Psychedelic light show with a strobe light and use dry ice to create a fog effect to their performances. The band adds Progressive and Psychedelic Rock songs to their set list.
The band is not paid for the job. The audience numbers around 4, people which is the largest crowd the band has yet played for.
After the first 45 came out the band contacted local record producer Timothy D. Kehr and told him that they were not happy with the recording quality of their first 45 and wanted to get a better sound for their next recording. Timothy books studio time for August 24th at The band has a job the night before the recording session at the Blue Note Ballroom in Winsted, Minnesota and the group drives right to Milford after the job and park in front of the studio and sleep in the van.
In the morning the guys stop at a nearby convenience store to pick up some breakfast consisting of pop and cup cakes. Timothy drives down to Milford and meets the group at the studio and talks with the recording engineer Roger Blunt and the session gets under way.
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The plan is changed to finish the two songs in process. The basic tracks recorded for the two songs are: These tracks are recorded on two tracks and then mixed down to one track. Next, the guitar solo is recorded on a track and then mixed down with the first tracks. Then, the lead vocals are done on one track and the backing vocals are recorded on the last empty track with the members standing around a single microphone in a half circle trying to get the right blend of voices as Timothy gives instructions from the control room.
The session lasted until 6: With the band having a heavy travel schedule there is not enough money to press up the two songs recorded at IGL. Kehr had agreed to manage Jokers Wild after the recording but was busy with other local bands at the time and was trying to land a job with a national record company which he eventually did.
After a short while, Jokers Wild would become a three piece power trio with David Anthony Wachter taking over the booking and management of the band. Bill Jordan informs the band he is leaving in order to play country music and joins the Chill Hillman Band, a local country band. Lonnie Knight becomes the lead guitar player. Dale Strength from City Strangers joins on second lead guitar and vocals and the band is once again a five-piece band.
Dale plays with the band for six weeks and then leaves to finish his schooling as a graphic artist. The band is now a four-piece group. Danny Kane from The Stillroven joins the band on rhythm guitar and vocals for three weeks and then leaves for a job opportunity outside of the music business.
Tony Andreason from The Trashmen produces the recording session. Greg Springer leaves the band and the group is now a three-piece with Lonnie, Denny and Pete. The band builds their own Fender experimental amps and Pete goes from a single kick drum to a double kick drum. The record gets airplay on the local radio stations. Pete goes from a double kick drum to a triple kick drum and also adds floor toms and upper toms as well as cymbals.
Pete also starts to amp up his drum style by shattering drum sticks during his drum solos. Greg Springer rejoins the band. The band is now a four-piece goup again. The band plans on releasing a 45 with the other two songs recorded in January, Due to financial issues the record is never released.
The band is now a three piece group again. The three piece band gains in popularity due to its wild stage show, original songs, and massive amount of musical equipment on stage… enough for three bands, including Sunn Amps.
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The band begins to rehearse songs for a new album to be produced by Warren Kendrick. The rehearsals are held at the teen club Someplace Else temporarily closed in Robbinsdale. There is no insurance coverage on the equipment and Sunn Amps refuses to replace the destroyed equipment after the band drove it all back to the Sunn factory in Portland, Oregon. David Anthony buys the band a Voice of the Theater PA system with cabinets and monitors for the band.
The band is on tour and traveling through Illinois and find out that Blue Cheer are going to be headlining a concert at the Joliet, Illinois fairgrounds and decide to stop by and take in the show.
David discovers from the highly agitated concert promoter that Blue Cheer are a no show for the concert and David proposes that Jokers Wild take the stage for the headline act. Some members of the audience actually think that Jokers Wild are Blue Cheer. Most of the songs are originals, plus a few covers, and the band records the instruments live and then take a break and come back in to record the vocals.
The idea is to record a large number of songs in a short time period in order to get a tape to a record producer from New York who believes he can get the band a national record deal. The band completes the recording and gives the producer a tape of the songs but do not hear back from the producer.
April 29 and 30, Five songs for the album are recorded but due to the heavy touring schedule of the band they do not return to the studio to finish the album. The tour is supposed to be a three to five week job. Bill Gent joins the band on drums. The group decides to finish up the year playing as Jokers Wild and then plan to change the name of the band to Flash Tuesday starting in January, A new version of Jokers Wild comes together with: This version of the band plays for about five weeks.
Another version of the band comes together with: Lonnie Knight on lead guitar and vocals; Chuck Edwards on second lead guitar and vocals; Denny Johnson on bass guitar and vocals; and Robby Belleville on drums. Included on the album were five songs by Jokers Wild: Numerous other local bands were also included in the compilation series which has a total of 7 volumes.
Playing live at the event were: The cover also features Psychedelic artwork that Lonnie Knight came up with completed by an artist when the band was playing to use for concert posters. Following the vinyl album, a CD of the band is planned that will include songs not on the vinyl record. Loren Cave of Storm Lake, Iowa, was a fan of the band and had seen them perform at the Cobblestone Ballroom in Storm Lake on numerous occasions and sent the band a two-page letter with 95 proposed album names.
Due to the band being heavily booked in , the group did not return to the studio to complete the album. The vinyl album is set for release in September, and will only be available online.
The record can be ordered through the website: The concert helped raised funds for Guitars for Vets and was organized by local musician Billy Hallquist.