Photo Book

Courtesy of Mike Psyche

Hard to believe, as David Letterman would say, but there was once a time when everybody wasn't walking around with a phone, taking pictures and videos of everything.  Back in the 1980s and 1990s, people went to shows and bought records, phones were phones, and cameras were cameras.  At the time, so many of us were busy having fun and experiencing Pittsburgh's exciting punk/underground live music scene through our own eyes and ears that we didn't consider documenting any of it.  As years passed, we realized that what little mementos we had - 45s, gig posters, matchbooks from the Electric Banana - were precious things.

Fortunately, one Erik Bauer and his camera were there to commemorate the scene with 15 years' worth of photos.  He has published them in HAD TO BE THERE:  A Visual History of the Explosive Pittsburgh Underground (1979 - 1994) and it's something to treasure. There are photos (many at the Electric Banana), gig posters, set lists, and brief histories of many of the bands from the time period.  Erik must have been the most discreet photographer to be found anywhere.  I know I was at some of the shows pictured in the book but was completely unaware anybody was taking photographs at the time.  (As an added bonus, a passing remark in one of the band bios turned me on to Crash Course in Science.  That's another reason I love books like this.)  But enough about me.  Read on for relevant information.

Pittsburgh, PA
December 22, 2023
The book is available from the following retail vendors (we'll add to this list as we learn of more):
•    Bottom Feeder Books
•    Copacetic Comics
•    Fungus Books and Records
•    Get Hip Records

Bands included in photos (in alphabetical order):
•    Barbed Wire Dolls
•    The Bats
•    Bbronk
•    The Beach Bunnies
•    Blue Collar
•    Bone of Contention
•    Cardboards
•    Carsickness
•    Cousin It
•    The Cynics
•    Dead Man's Hand
•    Deformed
•    Direct Action
•    The Five
•    Gag
•    Ground Zero
•    Half Life
•    The Imprints
•    The Inmates/The Trend
•    Karl Hendericks Trio
•    Mikrokrimefilter and the Undesirables
•    Moist
•    Monkey On A Stick
•    99¢
•    No Shelter
•    The Pleasure Heads
•    Prototype
•    Radio Hanoi
•    Real Enemy
•    Savage Amused
•    Screaming Mailboxes of Destiny
•    The Shakes
•    Da Shunts
•    Stick Against Stone
•    Submachine
•    Thickhead Grin
•    The USSS
•    2000 Maniacs
•    Wormhole

Photos by Erik Bauer
Foreword by Sam Matthews
Afterword by Mike Seamans
Assistance by Mike Psyche
Editor - Jason Pettigrew

Retail vendor list updated 1/14/24