Sunday Surf Party: The Main Event - The Fabulous Pyronauts!

Editor’s Note:  We had hoped for photos but do not have them yet.  Patience is a virtue at which I am deficient.  So you get another look at well-crafted CD artwork instead.



Enough with the prelims, the time had come for the main event.  “Ladies and Gentlemen, here is one of the best surf bands in Northern California -- the fabulous Pyronauts!”

Pyronauts were at the Capitol Bowl as a trio.  Paul the Pyronaut, The Brett Cole, and Timmy Stephenson.  No Bob Bitchin’. 

They started off with “Mr. Moto.”  Their initial energy level was down some from usual.  Then again, they had to be gig weary.  They played Friday night in Auburn.  Then, they were outdoors in the sun -- the first hot day sun -- by the pool at Thunder Valley Casino for a private party  on Saturday afternoon.  On Saturday night, they were the headliners after two or three other bands in Grass Valley.  A 9:00 start meant that they most likely did not play until 11:00 or later.

Paul probably arrived home around 3:00 a.m. and was back on the road at 11:00 to make West Sac by noon.  Then he played a set with the Lava Pups.  Tim and Brett burned some of their energy by bowling during our set.  Oh, yeah, the air conditioning was not at its best or was out entirely.

Good thing that they all are young!

Paul knew what the band needed for an energy boost.  He looked to the audience for that.  “What do you want to hear?”  People started to shout out requests.  Zap!  Energy filled the band and the room. 

Interactive entertainment at its absolute best.

Revitalized, the Pyronauts played some songs off of “Play for Surf.”  By request, they played songs that I had not heard them play for some time.  “Ghost Riders” and “Baja.”  They hit some of the old dependables like “Peter Gunn.”  Animated and expressive, Paul sang “Folsom Prison Blues.”  They performed their great go-to songs like “Miserlou” and “Sifaka.”

Beyond the restaurant and lounge area, a birthday party was underway.  The children arrived and starting bowling during our set.  By the time the Pyronauts took over, they were eating pizza and opening packages.  One of the adults from the party walked up to Paul, tapped on his shoulder, and whispered to him.  Soon, the Pyronauts led the entire Capitol Bowl in “Happy Birthday.”  They followed that with a spirited “Wipe Out.”  A 6-year old got something more tthan presents from his friends o remember for his birthday!

As I watched from a table in the back of the restaurant, I just marveled about the skills and professionalism of the Pyronauts.  About how they came out the doldrums caused by a day in the sun and a couple of late nights to be energetic and, as always, entertaining.  About how they were consummate professionals who refused to “mail in” a show.  About how lucky I was to have the opportunity to play on the same stage with Paul.  They showed the audience what REAL musicians do.

They closed with “Sifaka.”  I walked up to the mic and remembered to put my lips to it.  “Give it up for the fabulous Pyronauts!  That was ‘Sifaka,’ which is on their new CD which is available at the merch table.  Thank you for coming out today.  Thank you to the Capitol Bowl for letting us play.  And again a big thank you to the Pyronauts -- a best surf band in Northern California!”

The audience applauded for the Pyronauts.  People told us that they had had fun and had really enjoyed the afternoon.

Our Sunday Afternoon Surf Party and CD Release was over except for packing up.  The Pyronauts could rest after their busy weekend.  Oh, yeah, they still had a 45-minute drive ahead to get home.

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