Posts Tagged ‘oedipus and the mothers’

As promised, a coda to yesterday’s post.

As fraternities go, RPI’s chapter of Sigma Chi might have been a fun one to join.

In addition to an interesting cast of characters, the Sigs of the Sixties had their own R&B party band, Oedipus and the Mothers.

Oedipus might not have had the stage presence of Otis Day and the Knights, but they were surprisingly funky for a group of future engineers, architects and college professors. Their bust-ass versions of James Brown’s “Night Train” and Bo Diddley’s “Can’t Judge A Book” are still some of the strongest arguments ever crafted for the existence of the Greek system.

Full disclosure: I have twice had the pleasure of playing guitar with Oedipus at their reunion gigs, which is what brought me to my dad’s frat house.

You won’t hear me on the following songs, though. These are live recordings from the spring of 1965, taped at the Sig house on Pinewoods Avenue, Troy. This is what a Sixties frat party sounded like — at least, at a fraternity fortunate enough to have its own band.

I’ll provide the music; you provide the toga. Enjoy:

Night Train

Can’t Judge A Book

Oedipus and the Mothers:

Woody High, guitar and vocals; and Jim Straw, bass.

Lou Chiappetta, drums and vocals.

Gary Simundza, trombone.

Rod Blumenau, saxophone.


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