Elwood "Jr." Madeo

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Elwood "Jr." Madeo was the leader of The Ramblers, and is credited with firing Zappa from his first band for "riding the cymbals too much".

By 1956 I was playing in a high school R&B band called the Ramblers. We used to rehearse in the living room of the piano player, Stuart Congdon — his Dad was a preacher. I practiced on pots and pans, held between my knees like bongos. I finally talked my folks into buying a real drum set (secondhand, from a guy up the street, for about fifty dollars). I didn't take delivery on the drum set until a week before our first gig. Since I had never learned to coordinate my hands and feet, I was not very good at keeping time with the kick-drum pedal. The bandleader, Elwood "junior" Madeo, had gotten us a job at a place called the Uptown Hall, at 40th and Mead in the Hillcrcst district of San Diego. Our fee: seven dollars—for the whole band. On the way to the gig, I realized that I had forgotten my drumsticks (my only pair), and we had to drive back across town to get them. Eventually I was fired because they said I played the cymbals too much. It's hard to be a drummer-in-training, because there are very few apartments that are soundproof enough to practice in. (Where do good drummers really come from?)


On "The Lost Episodes" there's a track called The Blackouts, and in the liner notes, Junior Madeo is listed as a musician. It can only be assumed that Madeo's inclusion is either an error by FZ, or that this is yet another version of The Blackouts.

Elwood "Jr." Madeo is included in the list of names on the cover of Freak Out!

External links

Elwood Madeo