Sued51's Blog











{May 25, 2012}   A Fan’s History of 80’s Boston Bands: H is for Human Sexual Response

I know, Human Sexual Response is a strange name for a band, but in keeping with their name, they were an interesting band with an interesting following. Eric, Jane, and I saw them quite a few times, but as I went searching through my old photo albums, the only photos I could find were these blurry ones taken in 1981 at the 1270 (one of Boston’s original gay clubs). When great music was playing there…the audience and atmosphere was electric and eclectic.

I couldn’t use a flash in the club, and as you can see, I wasn’t very good at keeping my hands from shaking at wide open apertures. And yet, somehow these photos capture something about the essence of the band and the club: colorful. 

HSR were unique, and to be honest, a little strange and often outrageous, which usually made for great shows. The other reason I liked them was because they had terrific harmonies (the common quality possessed by all my favorite bands), which makes sense for a band whose members started as an a capella band. I grooved to their version of the song, “Cool Jerk”; it always made me want to a dance. My other favorite song was “Jackie Onassis”.  I loved that the members would often don sunglasses when they sang the song.

Definitely an experience to remember…

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Giovanni says:

Sounds like you had a lot of fun there. Does the club still exist? Do you ever return to the building for a nostalgic look?

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sued51 says:

Giovanni,
Thanks for your comment and questions. I never go into the city anymore except to pick someone up at the airport (and that would be nowhere near the club). Most of the clubs I write about no longer exist. It was a vibrant and exciting time for music in Boston and a really fun time in my life.

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peters154 says:

One day when I was a young teen, I asked my parents if I could go into downtown Boston to buy a record. This was back when parents did not worry at all about sending kids off by themselves on the “T”. So off I went to the huge ‘Strawberries’ chain store that used to be located in downtown Boston to buy one of my first records. And what did I buy? Human Sexual Response’s first record, “Fig 14”, which had an odd photo of two children poking at a molded jello dessert. It took just a few seconds of “Land of the Glass Pine Cones” to convince my parents that the music I listened to was not at all what they were expecting.

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sued51 says:

Thanks for your comment…that’s funny! I do believe I have still have Fig 14…my records are all packed in boxes because I don’t have a turntable set up at the moment.
I spent a lot of time in that Strawberries store…:-)
My friend Eric and I used to go record shopping for the day…we would hit that store, Nuggets (in Kenmore Square for used records), and there were about 4 places in Harvard Square. Those were the days…

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peters154 says:

Sadly, I no longer have that record!

I moved on to Newbury Comics a year of two later.

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ELaw says:

to peters154-land of the glass pine cones was actually on their second album “In A Roman Mood”. Both albums are great! Just got a FB from Dini (one of the singers) that their will be a H.S.R. reunion November 10th at the Paradise. How exciting is that? Very! To Giovanni-that club is now a sports bar called the Baseball Tavern. To all, after H.S.R. the main singer Larry and the guitar player Rich had a band called the Zulus. they put out one mini album and one full length. the full length is on Slash Records. Rich has been in a lot of bands. most recently he was the touring guitar player for Wanda Jackson.

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sued51 says:

Eric,
Thanks so much for all the information! 🙂

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peters154 says:

Oops! That’s right, my memory can be faulty on records i dont have anymore. I was happy to find out that HSR is available on iTunes.

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[…] with “Z.”  The Zulus were made up of former members of Human Sexual Response, the band I wrote about for the letter “H.” It took a while for them to settle on that name. Some might argue that they were more successful […]

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