It all began in 1965 when a fellow by the name of Eric (from Monroe, MI) took up temporary residence on the Northwest side of Chicago
while attending DeVry Tech. By fate he rented a small basement apartment in a home owned by Steve's grandmother and eventually
the two met. Steve was just learning how to play guitar. Eric met a fellow at school named Fred who also
played guitar, and one day said, "Hey Fred, I know someone else who plays". The rest as they say is "history".
Fred and Steve would
get together almost every weekend behind a music stand. First one would play rhythm while the other played lead, then they'd
switch off. The music was simple instrumentals. Fred had one of the first drums machines on the market, "Mr. Ed" they called it (short
for Electronic Drummer) a great tool to keep time. One day they got an idea: "Wonder what it would be like to play with a live
drummer", so the typical signs were put up in music stores and, of all places, a convenient store next to a Laundromat on Fullerton
Eventually Steve got a call from a drummer and a date was set to get together. The day arrives, the doorbell rings,
and since Fred and Steve may have been warming up, Steve's mother answered the door. In walks this tall lanky dude with a blue and
white stripped tee, tight blue water-wader pants about 3 inches above his pointy black shoes, a fedora, and of course, a "lipper"
(a straight line of hair from his bottom lip to his chin); the perfect match for a couple of "under-attractive, cerebrally gifted
individuals". This would be our drummer!? 48 years later we can still remember Steve's mothers' words: "Oh my God
Steve, where in the world did you find him?"
Well, something must have clicked. Although there were no intentions of starting anything,
there happened to be a pizza place in the neighborhood with a lounge in the basement just yearning for live entertainment. It was
tempting, and of course we had a foot in the door since someone by the name of George was delivering pizzas for them! So after mustering
up enough courage - and a handfull of songs - our very first job was Scaccios Pizza & Lounge on Fullerton Ave. July 13, 1966.
As we arrived that fateful day walking up to the door, we couldn't help but notice the huge sign in the window: "In for one night
only from Las Vegas - The U.F.O.s" (Obviously the owner was totally into promoting his entertainment, not to mention stretching
things a bit!)
We were a trio until early 1967 when either Fred or Steve saw a sign at El Rey Music on Irving Park in Chicago
that read, "Bass player looking for band", so the call was made and a date set. We met Greg who went on to play bass with
us for some 11 years. It was immediately obvious that adding bottom end to our sound was just what the doctor ordered.
Once again things clicked, and they continued clicking for a lot longer than most believe.
Probably the reason The Other Half "left no trace of their history" after recording their single in 1967 is because nearly all of their jobs were private parties. They never played regular teen clubs such as The Cellar in Arlington Heights, H.S. dances, nor did they promote themselves the way most other garage bands did back then with publicity photos or posters. "Stardom", for the lack of a better word, wasn't in their agenda. They were content playing for folks who enjoyed having a good time. It was all about good time music, the people, and having fun.
When the band was formed in 1965 we originally called ourselves "The U.F.O.'s". It wasn't long before we heard of another group of the same name (possibly on the West coast) so in search of a new name, Steve looked through a Thesaurus for "something different". We all voted on "The Other Half" since to the best of our knowledge at the time, no one else was using it.
Little known fact: