from FOK Rock: A Compilation from Friends of Kitchen to Benefit the Bicycle Kitchen
released September 21, 2011
Glassell Park is one of Los Angeles's older neighborhoods, having been developed in the late 19th century along the Los Angeles Railway track that formerly ran in the median of Eagle Rock Boulevard and the adjoining hills. It is a quiet, almost sleepy, largely residential district, with a large industrial corridor along San Fernando Road (which parallels Union Pacific railroad tracks) and low-rise commercial buildings along Eagle Rock Boulevard. Today it is largely working class, Latino, white, Filipino and Asian.
It was here that the Glassell Park 3 began sometime in 2002, hidden away in a small industrial/ living space, affectionately known as The Mule. This space is no longer in the hands of any gp3 member, but it still stands as a testimony to all the good times had by friends, family members and bands that have passed through it's metal gated door and into it's cement belly.
One night when Uncle John and Scotty, of the Foothill Music band The Barren Foothill Breakdown, were hanging around The Mule they decided to play some music with the box n snare (uncle j's instrument of choice) and the guit-jo (scotty's choice) and what they ended up playing that night became the beginning of gp3. As more or less a joke, they played a made-up
garage-style rock n' roll tune with these totally accoustic instruments and it struck them as being
"kinda crazy." They later played it for fellow members of the BFB and were then encouraged by them that this kind of musical behavior should indeed continue. So Uncle J and Scotty commenced to "write" a slew of crazy accoustic punk, rock and blues songs in this vein while Scotty made up lyrics/mumblings as the songs were played.
They played their first show in 2002 at the King-King in Hollywood and the crowds response was one of more confusion (and possible cringing) than anything else. This fanned the flames and gp3 moved forward to intensify their ruckus style of simple, raw, energetic music. They took it to the studio (The Mule, of course) and recorded their first release in this raw fashion, called "number 2." Their friends seemed to like it.
With experimentation being a driving force behind their music, Glassell Park 3 again decided to try something different one night. Although the all-accoustic sound was something they very much endeared, all the intensity that Scotty layed upon his 6 string banjo (guit-jo) could not compete with the rhythmic poundings of the blacksmith, Uncle John. They grabbed a nearby accoustic guitar pick-up, shoved it into the back of the guit-jo, plugged it into a nearby bass amp
and turned it loud enough that it distorted...thus the gritty and powerful gp3 sound was born. At this point Scott started to write real lyrics and they recorded their second release, "Avenue 34."
They continued to play this way until another experiment came to mind while talking to another bandmate from BFB, Gavin. They decided to try playing with Gavin improvising his way into the songs on bass. What they came up with was an even more intense sound, explosive at every turn. After playing a number of shows with lil' G (Gavin), they recorded their latest release with the help of Kelly Martin and her fabulous one-mic set-up, called "The Night Before."
It is at this point that we find gp3's current state. They often play as the threesome, but it is not uncommon to see U.J and Scotty playing as the original twosome. Either way, the set is always filled with dancing, pounding, hollering, sweating and celebration, proclaiming that music is always successful when played while surrounded by those one cares about most - their friends, family and neighbors.