Patty Cake (Short)

In 1976, my friend Jef Fisk needed a subject for a video production class he was taking at the local J.C. Video production was a fledgling art form at the time, and Jef worked with equipment we would now consider to be about as easy to use as it would be to train a dinosaur.

    Another friend, Bill Martin, was in town for what he thought was a visit. Bill and I had worked up a patty cake routine when we were part of Salamander 4 or 5 years before. His wife, Gail Swailes, (who was the lead singer for Salamander) was also in town. We decided to try and brush up on some of our old originals and the”cake” bit for Jef’s project. This is the result.

    Bill ended up moving with me to California a few months later. 

    When we were in Michigan, we could go into a bar and tell the bartender – “We are the world’s best pattycakers. We’d like to show you our skills, and if you like what you see, perhaps we could prevail upon you for a free beer.” Invariably we would be served the beer first. This would work great for awhile, but after 3 or 4 bars we would hit the point of diminishing returns, and be unable to “cake”.

    In California nobody would let us “cake”. Perhaps they had been burned before by innocuous sounding foolery that ended up being pornographic or disgusting, and they thought we were going to drop our drawers or something. Ah, California. We did win a “Gong Show” preliminary, but they never put us on national TV as promised. Perhaps our hair was too long……

    In the early 1990’s a friend took the 1 inch wide original video tape and transferred it to VHS. By then it had already lost a lot of quality (but I still think it is really fun, so I include it here). After the millennium I had it transferred to C.D.

    The short version has the Cake, just the Cake, and nothing but the Cake.

    The long version includes all the original Hippie stuff. To view it, click on the image below.

    The music was recorded live and is the only recordings I have of Salamander.

    I hope you enjoy it.

Patty Cake (Long)