For over 40 years, HANDSOME DICK MANITOBA was the lead singer, frontman and face of the DICTATORS, MANITOBA’S WILD KINGDOM & THE DICTATORS NYC. He did stints on the road singing with the legendary MC5, ran his own New York City tavern, MANITOBA’S, for 20 years and did a national five night a week rock ‘n’ roll radio program on SiriusXM satellite radio. Coming out of one of the richest, most notorious scenes in rock ‘n’ roll history, punk rock, and CBGB’s, Mr. MANITOBA has decided he needed to breathe in more oxygen, via live rock ‘n’ roll.
He has now put together an amazing band out of the great city of San Francisco featuring Craig Behrhorst (Ruffians, ex-Two Bit Thieij-guitar, Michael Butler (exExodus and ex-JetBoy)-bass, Alex Kane (Life, Sex & Death and ex-Marky Ramona’s Blitzkrieg)-guitar and Scotty Slam (ex-Circus of Power and The Stoning)drums.
Line up so far: https://www.rebellionfestivals.com/line-up
Weekend and limited Day tickets available now!
PAYMENT PLANS: https://rebpp.keekmerch.com
We are delighted to start confirming some of the people who will be appearing on the Rebellion Literary Stage in 2024, another mix of varied interviews, discussion panels and possibly the odd film.
Handsome Dick Manitoba made his live debut as singer of the Dictators in 1975 at Popeye’s Spinach Factory in Brooklyn. The band went on to become synonymous with the early Punk scene before splitting in 1979. He went on to form Wild Kingdom and in 2012 Manitoba, who eventually rebranded as Dictators NYC, between times singing for a reformed MC5. More lately he released a solo album, 2019’s ‘Born in the Bronx’, as well as having turned his hand to DJ’ing and having been the proprietor of his own dive bar, aptly named Manitoba’s.
Line up so far: https://www.rebellionfestivals.com/line-up
Weekend and limited Day tickets available now!
PAYMENT PLANS: https://rebpp.keekmerch.com
A MAGICAL COLORFUL FRIENDSHIP
There are 365 days a year for some strange reason my surgeon is doing a hip replacement on me picked February 5 to do the surgery but I’d still like to say a word or maybe 1000 for my good friend Scott
had I’ve been able to make it to the event, well, here we go
I welcome you to this event, which I consider a be-in
A term hippies often used
simply as excuses for celebrations of life
and to share and express our joy and love
and in this case,for a wonderful man,
A man with a super big heart
a man with a great musical talent
a man who was extremely intelligent and when Scott was on, he was
as funny as fuck.
there are all kinds of magic people in this world
there are rock ‘n’ roll magic people
The Beatles and The Rolling Stones
it HAD to be THOSE people and those people only
there are magic mates
that special thing that happens when you meet someone new
and it’s thrilling
and exciting and you
“oh shit, this is it”
there’s the magic of the love between a parent and their child, possibly the strongest love of all.
and here’s something we all know,
as we travel through life,we’re gonna make friends
its An integral part of the human experience
our family of friends,as they are sometimes called
we’re gonna make lots of friends
there will be acquaintance friends
there will be pretty good friends
there will be Asshole friends who you make believe are friends
if you’re lucky
there will be one or two or three magical friends
besties, as I think they call them these days
our true brothers and sisters.
Scott Kempner was one such magical friend in my life
Scott lived in the Bronx about 10 blocks from Yankee Stadium. He moved up into my neighborhood in the north Central Bronx an area called Williamsbridge,
when he was 10 years old,
same age as me
we were both in the fourth grade
we had a singing teacher named Mrs. Korman
she had terrible uncontrollable under arm wetness.
Even Mitchum didn’t work,
the school song started thus way:
“PS 41 leads the Bronx in education”
but WE changed it to
“PS 41 leads the Bronx in perspiration”
another example of Bronx grade school brilliance
our friendship didn’t take long to click . It didn’t seem like it took any work. It just seemed like it was there for us. It was meant to be
Scott was the brother I never had.
Scott and I went to the same Hebrew school
we would get out of PS 41 and walk about seven or eight blocks to Hebrew sorry to hear about your father school.
We were not really good Jewish students
We no like
we would usually talk
about things on the way to Hebrew school like our favorite marvel comic heroes and who we thought was the coolest
Scott, being the more cosmic person than I was went for Dr.Strange
I went with the human torch, Corvette stingray, cool blonde hair, and a blonde shiksa girlfriend ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Russell Wolinsky of sick fucks fame lived in my housing project Gun Hill Houses
a block away from Scott.
I lived two blocks away from Scott.
It’s amazing that the three of us who knew each other for so long lived so close to each other
the large intersection which I was not allowed to cross by myself was Gun Hill Road and White Plains Road
around the corner from Louis restaurant
where Michael Corleone shot Solozzo the drug dealing Turk,and McCluskey the police captain,who was on the take
i’m speaking, of course of the godfather
once my family got to know Scott’s family
and me and Scott were good pals it was OK
I could cross the big street by myself.
I was 27 years old
Now here’s something that might make you question your atheism or agnosticism
im not trying to turn you into a fan of God
somethings in life are so uniquely weird I just think there is no way you could figure out why
early on, I explained how Scott’s family moved from closer from near the south Bronx up into the mid central Bronx where I lived
his family,moved two blocks away
the County in FL. above Miami is called.Broward County
and beside having world class mixed martial art gyms they have about 500 areas you can buy a condo and retire. The place is probably 95% Jewish. There are literally I would guess, at least a million places for Jews to move down from New York, and retire, and they did
each place had a swimming pool and plenty of space to take your morning powerwalk
in the afternoon
the old Jewish men would sit around the pool boobs facing South, playing pinochle
My parents retired, moved down to one of these places,
soon thereafter Scott’s parents retired and out of everywhere in America to retire, they moved down the road from my parents place!
like a 15 or 20 minute walk……..,
moving two blocks away IN THE BRONX
to going to Broward county
with all the choices, they basically moved two blocks away
There in lies the mystery of our our families, our closeness
Scott and I would both agree, as Steve Van Zandt would as well,the big bang in rock ‘n’ roll was the Beatles on Ed Sullivan
we were all big British invasion fans. We both were big New York Yankee fans
even many decades later when I was a DJ at Sirius satellite radio I’d be sitting and working on my show and Scott would call and we would talk about the Yankees for like 45 minutes,
I knew what he felt about the Yankees and he knew what I felt. It was very emotional. It was Dad,it was beautiful baseball, oh, so beautiful baseball
it was the BRONX!.
Scott, as much as anybody I’ve ever known,
was an absolute rock ‘n’ roll maniac,
Scott’s life was devoted to rock ‘n’ roll,reading every magazine on a microscopic level, absorbing every bit of information from everywhere he could get it
I loved rock ‘n’ roll. I loved my music but I just wasn’t the collector of records and magazines and information that
so what I did was I hung out with Scott and a few similar guys I knew
and I think it’s called…. osmosis
I loved what I loved and then I absorbed a whole Lotta shit from these guys
when I had a question to ask about rock ‘n’ roll I went to Scott
And he waxed poetic with his detailed, intelligent answers
of rock ‘n’ roll
We attended tons of amazing
concerts together over the years
along with baseball were the two great cultural loves of our life
there was a place called Alexanders IN THE BRONX
a huge dept.Store that sold everything and anything under the sun
downstairs they had records for like three dollars or something,
down the block they had a record store called, “spinning disc” Scott would always make a trip there after Alexander‘s and he would always buy,
(he had a more gelt than me)
He would always buy the British version of The LP which sometimes Had the same songs in different order
and sometimes had different songs
Scott, ever being the collector,would make sure he had an English version of an album that he loved. He was an amazing record collector.
we took the 15 bus from our neighborhood to Fordham Road and Alexander’s
on the way up the hill to Alexander’s. We would stop and get the best hamburgers we ever had in our lives. It was called
There was a man in the window, cooking the burgers
we would get two rare hamburgers
and sit on our stools.
(no chairs no fries just stools) There were fake wooden buckets of sliced, sour pickles, onions, and tomatoes. Big
burger didn’t need any of them. It needed salt and ketchup
there was one moment right there which to me
I hope you love this line as much as I did
because not only was Scott a super bright guy academically but forget that
he was a super bright guy,period And he could be as funny as anyone
he took a bite of this hamburger and so did I and we looked at each other and he said to me
“man this is like eating MEAT CANDY”. I never forgot that line
it was perfect .
So the next time you bite into an amazing hamburger,and you take the first bite and smell the first smell close your eyes just go
“MMMMMM meat candy!”
One day “I called for Scott” that’s what we used to call it. “I called for him”.
He told me his mom wouldn’t be home
I went over Scott’s house,he shut out the light in his bedroom and put on a red light bulb, and then we would
take a kazoo, and we would put aluminum foil at the top of the kazoo Tightly covering the hole. and then with a pin we would punch holes in the top and that’s where we put our hash
we then covered the front of the kazoo with our finger
hash on top
light a fire
drawing the smoke as we opened and closed our finger at the end of the kazoo
so you got a red light and the kazoo, and hash
but we needed music
we then put on a velvet underground album
might I say we were a little bit ahead of the heavy metal kids,eating tuinals, and washing them down with Jack Daniels
before the dictators got started I guess the year was about 1971 when I graduated high school I bought a car
a 1964 Chevy impala for $300. Scott and I rented a room in the Borscht belt…
the Catskill mountains by Kiamesha Lake down the road from the famed Concord Hotel. We rented this little studio room. I think it was about $300 for the summer and we had three girls that we knew from the Bronx living next-door to us for the summer
three girls living next-door to us!
and we had some other friends up there that we hung out with
what a great summer it was
we were able to fit everything we owned in the trunk of this humongous car
it was when “AMERICA WAS GREAT!!!!”
an absolute boat of a car
so we head upstate and what can I tell you
I don’t think I have many better memories than hanging out with Scott all summer three girls next-door, a couple of friends in the neighborhood and we were free and away from our parents for two months
we would hitchhike back to the city every weekend and believe it or not. We were fuller brush delivery boys,
a man named Howie would sell Fuller brush products all week long and then we would take boxes of his sales and go apartment to apartment to make deliveries… yo,and we got paid, bitch!
for those of you that don’t remember Fuller brush
look it up
before dictators we were Fuller brush delivery boys!!.
Scott was always a real clothes horse. a stylish hipster
he got girls pretty early in his life too!.
yessir, the broads, certainly liked Scott
the Dictators got started and as an aside,long story,short, I wound up becoming lead singer,and the first time I ever sang Chris Stein from Blondie and Eric EMERSON from the Magic tramps part of the Andy Warhol crew were in the audience cheering me on
it was a glorious blast off to a thrilling career
Scott and I were vitally important members of the dictators for decades
Scott was an excellent rhythm guitar player and was as much a part the heart and soul as anybody in the band
as the years went by. Scott started songwriting and became more and more profound and prolific as a songwriter,and started his own Americana, rock ‘n’ roll band known as the Del Lords.
they traveled the world, got tons of attention, and Scott got to sing and record with one of his all-time heroes and mine,too Mr. Dion DiMucci from guess where? that’s right
the Bronx, New York
Scott, would’ve been 70. I celebrated mine this past January 29
from the fourth grade and 10 years old. we almost hit a friendship of 60 years
I dare say, probably longer,
as far as I know
than anybody’s marriage or friendship,
we almost made it to the big 6-0 together
my way of looking at things?
so, for the better part of 60 years I had the greatest friend in the world
you see and experience and read all the time about life’s beauty
and all it has to offer
how sweet and delicious life can be.
I lost my cousin to ALS. I lost my best friend to dementia.
That’s also how life can be
Something we’ll just never get a grip on
I know people that within matter of seconds
minutes had their life changed for the worst
a matter of seconds!
and the beauty is gone, and the pain and suffering has arrived
you don’t know
you don’t know how many ticks your heart has
No more sweetness, no more laughter
no more beauty,.
There is only sadness….
sadness in seeing such a bright, charming, talented funny, wonderful friend that I had for so many decades
just pass,in the way he did, and what he went through the last couple of years
Not to mention how much his wonderful sister Robin, who I know since she was six years old suffered, as well as his loving wife, Sharon did and how much effort and love they put in to Scott being comfortable
these women went through absolute daily hell
I visited Scott a couple of times
it was strange
it was surreal. There’s no reference point in life to deal with something like
it’s not like you take it in and you just understand it
it’s from another planet
I tried to be animated and see if I can get through. I did get some really nice smirks and semi smiles from Scott. The first time I walked in he looked at me and in the deep almost godfather voice he
quietly said “you look good” I tell you what
you can’t figure out this disease
so I didn’t try to.
I just took what he said to me and held onto it
I learned something many years ago when the wisest man I ever knew Stevie B , Scott knew Steve pretty well himself
Steve had given me so many philosophies, and so many ideals about life,that I find myself 25 years later,maybe 30 years later,spewing out things he had said to me
I still use them because they are the TRUTH
and here’s my point
beside the love and good feelings you will have as memories for Scott
tell stories about Scott
my little hamburger story about meat candy
maybe it’s not a big one
but it is something
you’d be surprised
how alive People become when you talk about them,
it could be a musical
or an event on the road, or a concert, you shared, or any cool moment as friends that you shared
it could be a joke
it could be anything, but Scott affected us all
After all,that IS why we are here
tell the damn stories about Scott
and if you could just remember a story here and there
and tell it
it does certainly feel like it keeps him alive
and we won’t
Scott, you know I love you with all my heart, and I know you love me with all your heart
and I’m not the biggest God guy or spiritual guy in the world
but I like to think at this moment,I will be seeing you again and we will have a lot of laughs,and of lot of firey,New York Yankees debates
I’m glad that as I traveled through this life I traveled it with you for so many years
God bless you Scott Kempner
“SEE YOU IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD MY FRIEND,