I’m really surprised that no one has posted yet about Dino Sax. I guess everyone’s still trying to repress the memories. But if you worked at Giant either in the last days of 38th or the first years of 14th, chances are at some point you would be doin’ business with the naked drummer.
Dino was a drummer who had a power trio of sorts, with 2 Polynesian brothers on bass and guitar. The brothers had bushy black hair and were skinny as hell, seemingly because they were serious speed freaks. When adjusting the PA for them, the guitarist/lead singer wouldn’t say “check one two,” he would yell “SOUND CHECK!!!” at the top of his lungs in a Geddy Lee-like high-pitched freakout. I think he played a Flying V.
But the real attraction was Dino, who disrobed for every rehearsal. Down to his sweat socks. Then he’d ask for like 8 mics — “Five for the drums, and three for the vocals.” He never seemed to take the hint that our PA’s were mostly 4-channel jobs and that miking the drum kit in an 8 by 10 room was pure insanity. He’d just come walking out to the desk with a trenchcoat on to cover his, um, manhood, and ask for more mikes. He’d inevitably saunter out mid-rehearsal too, for change. “Can I have 12 quarters?” He spoke in kind of a flat mutter and would’ve really been at home in the back row of a porno theatre on 42nd Street circa 1974.
The real tough part was having to go in to give them 10 minutes, then 5; they always ran over and he was ALWAYS NUDE. The inevitable jokes about handling the drum stool after his sessions were based on genuine revulsion and with damn good reason!!! I mean, as scummy as I was living back then, it couldn’t hold a candle to Dino’s ball sweat adorning our drum stools.
Dino was a real distinctive NYC character, another Giant regular who probably couldn’t be part of our new Disney-fied town. He had a strange pubic-looking beard that hung down off his chin and was often dyed blue, or rainbow colors. I used to see him on the street, both during and for years after my times at Giant. He was a bike messenger for years, and he went on to play for GG Allin (a good fit).
The last time I saw Dino play was at a historic show — the big Nirvana/Breeders gig at the New York Coliseum where now stands the Time Warner Center in Colombus Circle. The opening act was Jad Fair’s Half Japanese, a great weirdo underground band from the NYC/Hoboken scene of the 1980s. So I’m near the front, and thhe band starts playing, and I look up, and fuckin’ Dino Sax is playing drums for Half Japanese. And yes, he is 100 percent nude.
- Pete C.
Ok so some of these memories are a little easier on the psyche than others…. repressed memory for sure!
I was kind of thinking for Eric would have come along to give the keynote address on Dino but I think you dida great job here summing it up Pete Dose anyone remember “the helmet years” — That Chicken John guy told about a time that they were at a party somewhere when they were backing GG Allin. Dino flipped a chair over & started sticking one of it’s legs in his ass– To that he said “Dino, how many times have I gotta tell you not to fuck with the furniture”
- Jay W.
Damn! I’m fat and all now, but at least I keep my clothes on! SHEESH!
Oh my god..Dino Sax..or Dino Sachs …Ive found it spelled both ways.
Dino truly is on the top ten list of Giant characters. I wanted to post about him..but just couldnt get my brain around it. But now that Pete has broken the ice..
Dino’s main thing..besides playing drums, which he was actually pretty good at.. is that he likes to expose himself. Most of the time it was a subtle thing. He would stand in the main area and as people were paying he would drop his skintight biker shorts down exposing his ass and then pull them quickly back up. People would catch this out of the corner of their eye..and be like..what the fuck? a ‘did I just see what I thought I saw?’ look would appear on their face.
When you would go into a room to give him 5 minutes to get the fuck out he would be totally nude playing the drums. He had magazines spread out all around him. Mostly underwear catalogs, some softcore porn and Lunachick albums. Some people would get mad at him at shout at him to put his clothes back on..but most of us were like..yeah ..whatever man. We had seen it all and didnt even blink. It was actually a source of great amusement.
One time I was leaving Giant with my ex-wife and Eric Hubel. It was one of those brutaly cold, blusty and windy days…and as we got to the corner of 7th ave. and 14th st. there was Dino..He has his pants down to his ankles and his shirt hiked up presenting his naked body for all to see..I saw cars driving by gawking in amazement.. and as we started to pass him he turned and recognized us… He nodded his head and said “Hello” in a very casual way.
There are tons of Dino stories. Im sure that every day of that guys life is a story.
One of my favorites, told to me by the lead singer of Urban Scarecrow, is that Dino had been called at the last minute to sub for a drummer who couldnt make it to a gig. That gig was playing in this band that was supposed to play in the background for one of those PBS fundraisers that they have on televsion. It was a station in Connecticut I think. So sure enough Dino gets there and proceeds to freak everyone out by exposing himself and removing his clothing..so they call the police and he gets arrested. He goes to court the next day and the judge books a court date and gives him like $100 fine or 30 days..and Dino was like..Ill take the days..so Dino spent some time in jail. The actual figures are a blur..but you get the idea.
- Paul H.
Wow, Paul, that jail time story is wild. I didn’t remember the magazines being spread out, when giving them the countdown, but that explains Jay’s comment about “Redbook” and Lunachicks records… Someone oughta write a biography, like you said, every day of Dino’s life must be a story.
- Pete C.
If nothing else, you have to give the guy points for “style” It evolved to a point where he became strangely specific about the mags & whatnot strewn about him. Never porn…& then And then he started with the motorcycle helmet. (what the fuck can I say wearing a lumberjack hat & who really knows what worse at the time) If really want to see the glory –there’s an account of GG Allins funeral out there on the internet. It’s some webzine reporter relating exactly what he saw and we would expect. Dino was apparently in full forum doing his thing, that included LunaChicks records. I wish that I bookmarked it…or maybe not. It’s a trip to hear a 23rd persons account Was it Dave Scott that he used to play with when he was semi normal on 38th st?
- Pete C.