A mere year-and-a-half after feeling the high of finally meeting up with a Skud,
I'm now faced with the terrible news that Clyde Stafford died early this morning
of a massive heart attack. I imagine Platinum Paul meeting him on the Other Side
and saying What the HELL took you so long, man? Of course,
like myself, Clyde's family and friends wonder just the opposite. We'll miss you,
The Skuds ended in a big ball of contutions, er, confusion that is. After our "farewell"
show in Dallas on April Fools Day, we were still obligated to one gig at some club
in Grand Prarie and another at Zero's in Fort Worth — each about a month apart.
For whatever reason, Paul had decided that for the G.P. gig we would have a guest
guitar player instead of our very own Captain Jimi Zokar. Paul had chosen David from
The Infants to play with us. The gig was great fun for all (as usual), but was a
little strange without Jimi. A week later Paul had one of his regular blood transfusions.
He got some bad blood and nearly died. After his recovery he announced he was leaving
the band and wanted us to carry on without him. Clyde told me that he would be leaving
the band after the Zero's gig. A month went by when Insane Dwayne showed up at Clyde's
and informed us that this was the night of our show in Fort Worth. All we needed to
bring was our guitars, everything else would be provided... but who was going to play
guitar?!? We couldn't reach Jimi, didn't have David's number, so we called upon our
original guitar player Danny (of Danny and The Dogfuckers fame). He ran threw a few
songs with us as well as two new ones we wrote on the spot.
At the gig, the first few songs went off without a hitch. Dwayne was holding his own.
Then, Danny pulled a "Jim Morrison" on us and turned his back to the crowd and could
barely play anything. Clyde calmly informed the crowd that anyone who wanted to be
the new bass player for The Skuds were welcome to it and left the room and headed
for the bar. I don't recall who picked up his bass but halfway through whatever
the hell it was we were playing, I noticed Paul and his soon to be wife sitting
"incognito" at a table in the crowd. I laid my sticks down for the last time and
headed for the bar. Clyde had a fresh pack off menthols and a frosty mug waiting
for me. He told the bartender, "He'll have what I'm having". The bartender ponied
up two pitchers of beer and informed us they were "on the house for this evening"
at which point Clyde asked me what had taken me so long — followed by a right
cross upside my head. When I came to, Clyde was disco dancing ala John Travolta to
the horrible sounds coming from the stage. What the hell...it was over. For the
rest of the evening we did the Pony, the Swim, the Twist and as Clyde described it:
Tribal Dancing. We used words like "groovy" and "yeah maaaaan" and traded punches
to the face. The Skuds had begun with Danny, Dwayne, and myself-Dwayne was the last
Skud standing. Much to Clyde's wife's dismay, Clyde and I stayed drunk for a week
or better. After it was all said and done, Clyde reminded me that we had accomplished
what Paul had wanted. We didn't sit on our asses and do nothing while the world was
changing. We were part of the change. We made our statement. Fuck The Status Quo
and we had fun doing it. Hell, we were just being ourselves. Skuds R.I.P. 1980.
Live from DJ's hey-day, here's three Skuds songs for the road...
I'd Rather Throw Up Than Grow Up
We Do What We Want
Thanks to Steve Dirkx for recording this set and dubbing it for me way back when.
P.S. to the P.S. to the P.S.
by Jimi Zokar
Hey Jimi Zokar here! I am still on the planet — 25 years after The Skuds! After
Platinum Paul died, I was grief struck. I became a world-noted Tattoo Artist, by
the name Jimi Tatu, and am now retired, selling my 2 Tattoo Studios that I started.
When Clyde Cock died, I was devastated. We were all like Brothers.... me, Clyde and
Paul all grew up together. The Skuds were my world. The last tattoo I remember doing
was The Skuds logo on Clyde... which was still healing when he died. I am now certifiably
crazy and under the care of a county Mental Health Department (after being a Skud...
What else is there!). I would like to say a Big Thanx to Toast (Ryan Richardson) for
being the Best Fan a Skud could ever have, Tom Ordon, Best Manager, The Nervebreakers,
The Fort Worth Cats featuring Mike Neal (a/k/a 1/2 Nelson), most talented musicians
partying with The Ramones — which is a story in its self, and all the Groovy
people we met & all our fans. May the Music Live On! I love Rock N' Roll and
the survivors of the Skuds, Insane Dwayne and Low Life. We made a big mark in pioneering
Punk Rock in Texas and I believe it was all for Platinum Paul. It's what he wanted
to be, and God knew his time was short. May the Music Never Die! A special R.I.P.
to Clyde Cock.