Scot's Podium 3Feb98

The origins and current state of the Blasters / Dave Alvin Web Pages

I think it was like March of 1996 when I walked into my local record store and saw on the Upcoming Releases board an entry for a new Blasters album. Thrilled, but confused, since I hadn't heard anything about it, I asked the staff for more information. No one knew anything, but since the date was only a week away, I decided I could wait. I came back exactly a week later and there was no new album (still isn't, by the way) and again, no one at the store knew anything. "The web," I thought, "surely will have some information." So I went back to work and fired up Netscape and searched for the Blasters. After sorting through a million entries on Sound Blaster Audio cards, I found very little about our Blasters. A mention in an X page and a Los Lobos site (whose links I now have in the link section of my site), but nothing devoted in any substantial manner to either the Blasters or ex-Blaster, Dave Alvin.

Since I had just gotten back from a trip to the VW factory in Wolfsburg, Germany, and was anxious to put my pictures on the web, I decided this would be a good time to learn HTML and start my web page. Besides the VW stuff, I thought, I could put a little section about the Blasters and Dave Alvin and see if anyone is interested in a place to gather information about the bands. Well, it didn't take me long to realize the Blasters and Dave Alvin sections of my page were immensely more popular than my VW section. Blasters-related email pours in daily with people's comments, questions, and general good wishes. It was great to find so many people as excited as I was about American Music. While the response is sometimes overwhelming, I do try to respond or take action on all incoming mail. Having taken some time off for the holidays and then moved from SoCal to Ames, Iowa, I am far behind my updates and replies and apologize to everyone. I will be working hard soon to catch up again.

I've met Phil and Dave and the guys before, but I never introduced myself as the Web guy, cuz it seemed kind of strange that I should have their web page. "Hi, I'm Scot and I have your web page." I thought it would be pretty weird if one of these guys had a web page about me! However, of late, band members and their supporting staff have started to come online and have given me their support, so before leaving Southern California, I decided to 'fess up and met both Dave and The Blasters in Hollywood shows and introduced myself as the web guy. Dave was first (at one of the "un-announced" gigs at Jack's Sugar Shack) and was genuinely supportive and excited about the pages. I think Dave introduced me to everyone who happened by while we were talking. Also made contact with Gregory Boaz who had just moved a few miles away from me only a month or so before I was moving away, so I never got the chance to ask him about bass lessons.... Dave and I exchanged phone messages for the next month as we tried to arrange some time to get together to put some work on the pages. One of his comments went something like: "I heard a rumor you have a scanner now. Ooooh, this could be dangerous!" Unfortunately, we never managed to meet again before I moved, but we'll be trying again long-distance and you may see some directly-Dave-inspired changes in the pages coming soon.

It was probably only a week or so later when I heard from Johnny Bazz that the Blasters were going to be at the Hollywood House of Blues. Expecting snow that night in the mountains where I lived, I put the chains in my car and drove down for the show. Got a spot front and center for the show and went backstage afterwards to meet the band. Phil and I talked about his mathematics work and pondered ways to use fractals for image compression. Doing a little research the next day, I discovered this was indeed a standard technique, but had been supplanted recently by even more efficient wavelet compression schemes. Did anybody say, "A day late and a dollar short"? Johnny and Jerry were both very interested in the site and are involved in getting the t-shirts and "official bootleg" tapes for sale from the pages. As soon as a PO Box is arranged, I'll be posting the address for these orders. Should happen soon, so stay-tuned.

I get much of my information from Billy who has his share of sources, some direct contributions from band members and various publicity people, and from emailed comments from those online. If you know a concert date that I don't have, or went to a show and want to send a few words about it, or saw Phil at the furniture store, send me a message and I'll get the info into the pages.

Well, I think I've carried on long enough, but let me conclude by saying thanks to everyone for dropping by, sending encouraging notes, and for being patient when I get behind my updating and email responses. And if you haven't been there yet, check out the pages at That's my homepage and from there, you'll find links to both the Blasters and Dave's pages. (You'll also find a link to the pictures from my VW trip, but you can skip that; I won't mind.)

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Last modified 3Feb98.

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