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More Awkward Band Publicity Photos

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We just couldn’t leave well enough alone.  There are so many wonderfully awful publicity photographs out there left unseen.  They simply had to be shared.


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Just so you know: When you’re stoned out of your mind and someone with a camera asks you to look happy and smile, this is what you look like.  No doubt, they thought they looked perfectly normal.  They were wrong.




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As if they didn’t look nerdy enough, they had to name themselves after Gandalf’s horse.  Then, in a stroke of genius, they added a space between “shadow” and “fax”.  Well played Shadow Fax.  Well played.




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If your children ever ask you why punk rock happened, just show them this picture.




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One band member clearly did not get the memo that moustaches are mandatory in Joy Ride.



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One wonders what became of all these Zero Hit Wonders who quickly fizzled into obscurity.  I picture the lead singer of Expression with a desk job in Cleveland with a nice house in the ‘burbs who prays nightly his family never learns of his musical past.  Let’s hope his kids don’t read Flashbak.




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Just wow.  I would love to know what this group sounded like.  Alas, they seem to have faded away, leaving nothing behind but this incredibly awesome publicity photo.    Regardless, they are my new favorite band.




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Unlike Freedom, The Jerry Sun Show did leave a few artifacts behind.  Apparently, the group was fairly popular on the Vegas circuit, but unfortunately the gals are in the publicity shot simply as eye candy – they weren’t in the band. Here’s a live performance from the group.  Be prepared to be unimpressed.




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Another group with eye candy in their publicity shot.  I’m not complaining, but it is a tad uncomfortable with the fatherly figure in such a compromising position…



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…grinning maniacally with the girl’s boob on his sweaty temple.  It’s all very unbecoming.




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The group Savvy looks like your typical early Eighties pop group; nothing exceptionally good or bad.  But then you look closely at the two on the left, and things get a bit dark….



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It would appear that half of Savvy has gone completely mad.

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What the f-? Was it standard back then for publicity photographers to tell bands to look as insane as possible?  “Okay, now everyone say ‘cheese’… except for the drummer.  He needs to get hysterical and shit himself.”



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“Body Heat” doesn’t seem to fit this band.  They’re a far too nerdy to be allowed to have a name like that.  Of course, “Shadow Fax” was already taken, so they were low on options. They should have taken a cue from the next group…




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… they could’ve gone with “Groove Lotion”, “Heavy Breathing” or “Sexual Dynamite”, but they were smart and went with “Myles & Lenny”.    Well done, boys.




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Nothing wrong with Zulu Spear – I’m sure they were a fine band, and a crowd pleaser.  Although, it does seem that some members are slightly out of place- one in particular….




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… I mean, is it just me, or does it look like this Oriental fellow just photobombed this publicity shot?




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I’m pretty confident all four of Ginger are male; however, it did take me a minute to be sure.  Something’s a bit peculiar with this band.  I don’t know what it is, but something tells me I wouldn’t want to hang backstage and find out. And speaking of peculiar…




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I’m sure this seemed like a good idea at the time.  Thirty years later – not so much.

  • SkeptiGal

    S**t, look at Snap, Crackle, and Pop! Something’s gonna pop soon! Yikes!

  • Paige

    That naked guy isn’t even holding the guitar properly

  • Ken Zieger

    RE: The Yellowjackets: Ricky Lawson was the drummer at the time. The guy losing his cool, Jimmy Haslip, is a guitarist. Yellowjackets is an excellent jazz quartet that’s still playing. But yeah the photos are very something.

  • SkeptiGal

    The seated guy in front of Ginger looks like Peter MacNichol.

  • Rick Eiro Yamashiro

    Just now read your “Awkard Band Photos” post – Ha-ha Re: Zulu Spear – To paraphrase your original comment: I mean, is it just me or does singling out the “Oriental fellow” as being “slightly out of place” smack of classic racism? Especially since the band was a multi-ethnic collaboration which included South African, Russian, Filipino, Mexican , Jewish AND Japanese – hie has a name, Rick Yamashiro, and he was the band’s oriignal sax, flute, harmonica, vocalist who also designed the band’s logo and performed with the band intermittently over the course of seven years. Although the bands in many photos may not have made the best choices in selecting a photo, they nevertheless make ridiculously easy targets for lazy “writers” to make malicious sport of. If a guy’s ethnicity is the only “awkward thing”, then please remember that he and everyone pictured here were also people trying to creatively break into an industry where NOTHING is easy, one where self-important, self-styled “observers” take potshots at musicians from the safety of sidelines – lobbing their vitrolic shitballs at ridiculously unassuming prey. All the best, Bitch!….Rick Yamashiro

    • NGO

      Trust me, it’s just you. The author was referring to his expression. It’s fun to use words like racist and racism though, isn’t it?

    • clemdane

      I love Zulu Spear! I stumbled on this site looking for more pictures of the band. I used to go to every show they did in Berkeley starting in 1987 and ending when I left in 1992. I was so sad to hear that Sechaba Mokeoena had died. I am glad that Gideon got the band started up again, but I will always miss Sechaba. Are you in the revived band?