Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Grand Moff Tarkin - Cease and Desist (aka Imperial Metal)!


Here is the download: Grand Moff Tarkin - Cease and Desist

Atlanta owes a world of debt to Jim Stacy for making our town interesting. From all the bands he has played in (Greasepaint, Big Top, Yule Log, The LaBrea Stompers, I'm missing about thirty others), his previous ownership of the Star Bar, his patronage and involvement in many local cultural events (several at the Starlight Six Drive-In), and his more recent management of the Starlight Six and TV appearances, the guy has milked this town for all its worth. I'm always perplexed by people that dump on Atlanta as a bottom-tier town with nothing happening, and then you get guys like Jim Stacy working his ass off to create something interesting and entertain everyone along for the ride.

I am not the guy that could do a comprehensive post on Jim Stacy justice, but I will share one of his musical projects from the late 90's, Grand Moff Tarkin. If you are going to be a heavy bar-rock Star Wars themed band, you need to go all out. They did just that, with Jim Stacy on lead vocals as Darth Vader (which worked perfectly due to his stature/frame/body type), Royal Imperial Guardsmen and Stormtroopers on the strings, Boba Fett on the keys, and a Death Star Gunner on drums, of course with all other supporting characters participating in various roles throughout their live sets. Just check out some of the live photos taken by Frederick from degeneratepress.com:




They were kings of the Dragon Con/novelty rock circuit, but got out before the joke wore off. I never got to see them live, as I was lurking down towards the East Atlanta side of things around this time, but the show reviews from Degeneratepress sound like it was a blast. Jim Stacy has been involved in many other bands and musical projects since then, and I would highly recommend attending one of his performances whenever the opportunity presents itself.

By they way, I borrowed this CD from the Album 88 Georgia Music Show archives, so I want to thank Adam Bomb once again for allowing me to raid the stash.

23 comments:

  1. My buddy Richard Davis who played bass in Habeas Corpses was in this band...I think he was Boba.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. richard played guitar shane morton played bass not sure who the other guitar player and drummer were

      Delete
    2. richard played guitar shane morton played bass not sure who the other guitar player and drummer were

      Delete
  2. I know Jett Bryant was Bubba Fett on the keyboards, or at least the last time I saw them

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ben Davis gave me more back story last night, including the fact that they had to end the band due to an official cease and desist order from Lucasfilm, and that they would get huge sums of money to play shows (especially Dragoncon), but all of it would go into their production costs. Those suits are expensive...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Just got the word that Richard was an Imperial Guard. He also said that they sometimes wrote songs with blindfolds on because they couldn't look down at their guitars while wearing their costumes.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I believe Mark Boggs was on drums, though I'm not sure who/what he was dressed as.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This has been driving me nuts ever since I saw Jim's TV program. Wasn't there a band called Jim Stacy and the (something something) Side Show? Or did I make that up? What was the something-something?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Jim had a ton of circus-themed bands, starting with Big Top and ending with Greasepaint. There was a Laffo-fronted band with "Side Show" in the name, but I'm pretty sure it was a one-off appearance at a Bubbapalooza.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I remember seeing these guys a handful of times at the Echo Lounge during the lead-up to the release of Phantom Menace. At one such show, I remember they had some dude in a generic X-files-style alien mask jump onstage and start rapping. As the act continued and people booed the rapper, Jim/Darth "force-choked" the alien rapper to death, much to the pleasure of the crowd. These guys were great showmen, for sure!

    I also remember attending the midnight opening of Episode 1 at the Midtown Promenade theater, and right before the film started, someone up front started belting out Bill Murray's famous "Star Wars" piano lounge song from SNL. Multiple people later told me that was none other than Mr. Stacy, but I never knew for sure!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. we were playing ted nugent's *stranglehohld* as vader put the grip on...

      Delete
  9. Mark Stopper played drums in Grand Moff Tarkin. The other clown band was Palookaville.

    ReplyDelete
  10. We didn't write with blindfolds, but we did write knowing that we wouldn't be able to see our instruments. Members were: Jett Bryant (keyboard, Boba Fett ),Mark Boggs(drums,Death Star gunner),Shane Morton (bass,vocals,Stormtrooper),Jim Stacy(lead vocals,Darth Vader), Richard Davis(lead guitar,Imperial Guard ), and the other guitar slot was Eric Smith, later replaced by C.C.(El caminos) or Kenny Thomas( Truckadelic,Gargantua ).Thanks for posting this, I didn't have a copy myself!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hey Richard - thanks for going all out and making such an awesomely conceptualized band! I guess there weren't any other recordings made, right? It's cool to read all the comments and get some back story on the enigma that was Grand Moff Tarkin.

    ReplyDelete
  12. My favorite two stunts were raffling off the Star Wars Themed Crown Vic we built and the Ewok Pinata.

    I built all the costumes with JB Weld, Bondo and a veritable shitload of Velcro.

    I did not sing Bill Murray, I would never attempt to echo a voice of genius.
    Thanks for the kind words guys, sometimes you never know anyone gives a shit.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh yeah, we recorded "Cease and Desist" for $250 in a closet. True story.

    We spent all the proceeds from our first show at Trader Vic's. True story.

    We did an In-Theatre appearance at the wrong Theatre. True story.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is seriously my all time favorite band. Every show was an event.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I saw GMT at the Echo Lounge and it was Heinous.
    Thank you James.
    -Orudis Wasabe:Drummer for Heinous Bienfang

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thank you so much for posting this. Believe it or not a small group of punk kids/Star Wars nerds up here in New Jersey caught wind of this band around '99 and we became obsessed with them. We really wanted GMT to come up and play a show but alas it never panned out. Somehow we all managed to lose track of the MP3s/burned CDs that we had of this record and you're doing a great service by posting it here! If you still have contact with any of the dudes behind this band, please give them the regards of their fans in NJ!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I have a GMT t-shirt from a 40Watt show...I wear it every year to Dragon*Con. People freak out when they see the image of the melting Stormtrooper and a few have offered to buy it right off my back. Always did enjoy Big Top shows and every punk anthem blast from JStacy. Thanks for the good times!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thank you for all the cool comments.I loved playing in GMT.Dave Prowse said Jim was the only one who could play Vader like that.True story.Thank you to my bros I played with and all the people that helped us out while we were together.You know who you are

    ReplyDelete
  19. Wow! I am amazed there is a fan post for this. I am in one of the pictures at the Monster Bash. I dressed as Jango Fett. Jim Stacy asked as to be as fixtures to the band while they performed. I have plenty of pictures too. Jim Stacy is a very down to Earth person. I am happy to have crossed paths with him. What an honor!

    Jay S.

    ReplyDelete
  20. does anyone know if any other tracks are available, i was at one of their shows around 98 or so, it was great, i would love to hear all their stuff.

    ReplyDelete