Thursday, February 17, 2005

Headless Lucy: The first Incarnation

First I should explain how I came up with the name, "Headless Lucy", for the band. I had been playing guitar for at least ten years and I was recently divorced, so I had a lot more time on my hands than I was used to. I owned a small carpet cleaning company and one of the cleaners, in fact the only one besides me(his name was, Terry) heard me playing Led Zep's, "Good Times/Bad Times", one afternoon. He asked if I would teach him what I knew about playing guitar and I agreed because I had the time now and it would be a fun project.

Terry turned out to be the most motivated and driven guitar player I had ever run in to. After a few years, we had developed quite a good size reportoire of hard rock, classic rock songs,power ballads, and old time blues----- not to mention all the old Stones' covers from the Brian Jones era. I lived ,at the time, on an old dude ranch that had what used to be guest cottages on it. The cottages were constructed in 1949 out of adobe blocks. I had about five neighbors in my immediate area and we lived in the high desert of southeastern Arizona in isolation, about two miles from the nearest town. Tim, my neighbor, said he had always wanted to play the drums, so he went out and bought a kit and took some lessons. We soon started the laborious process of adding a fledgling drummer to our musical project. Another year of practice and we had the kernel of a rock band. People started showing up uninvited to listen to our sessions.

They often asked what the name of the band was? We three had never thought of ourselves as a
"band". Our intentions were much more modest. But it would now appear that we did , in fact, have a band and would need a proper name for it. Many names were considered and subsequently discarded. One day as Terry and I were driving from Huachuca City to Tombstone to do a carpet cleaning job, I was thinking about a murder that had happened in Phoenix years before. Odd things pop into your mind at odd moments ,occasionally. A woman's body had been found in a dumpster and the horrifying thing about it was that the murderer had chopped her head off, so the authorities were having a hard time identifying her body. Seemingly with no context to the time and place we were inI said, in a low voice, "Headless Lucy".

Terry said," What? What did you say?"

"Headless Lucy."

"Why in the name of God did you say that?"

"Oh, it just popped into my head", I replied.

We both laughed at the strangeness of this "Headless Lucy" remark and decided that it was so out of left- field that it would make a good band name. It was gruesome and at the same time silly and very resistant to analysis. The name seemed to mean something , but what? No one could really say. I came up with some seemingly logical reasons for inventing the name. One was that I named the band after anthropologist Louis Leakey's famous Headless Lucy skeleton that he found in Ethiopia.Another one was that Charlie Brown wised -up to Lucy's football trick and kicked her head off instead of kicking the football. But the truth of the matter is that the band was named after a nameless and headless murder victim that was found in a dumpster in Phoenix ,Arizona.

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