top of page


From a long-known source comes this invaluable document, which I’ll guess will inspire some chatter amongst SP trainspotters. First, let me say that if you read the writing at the bottom, it lists that on 6-1-88, you have two participants: James and Ron, and secondly, that just prior to a debut the plan was to have live drums. But alas! As have often been the case I decided to go without, for reasons which are better saved for a book (the one I’m writing), but I will say that, despite many declarations to some other truth, Mr. Ron was never a member of The Smashing Pumpkins. For two rehearsals and the surviving tapes I have of those practices does not a band make, nor was he involved in the direction, conception, or execution of these opening songs; whereas James was in many a tete-tete in my room.

And from that moment on, since Ron left that 2nd rehearsal, he and I have yet to meet again, but please do not take this as unkind, as I look back fondly on our running days together; which were extensive and florid. And I owe much to him as inspiration, for he was a first believer when there were none; and I do mean NONE.

So back to the tape: this odd compendium of songs I’d put together almost exclusively on my own, and which had songs aimed at what was to ‘be’ The Smashing Pumpkins early style; which was moody, gothic, and leaned heavily on straight a-b-a-b arrangements. Most of these numbers are forgettable, but that won’t stop me from sharing them with you soon enough, as transfers are almost complete of my 60 + 4-track demos tapes; and to that I plan on offering a multi-edition vinyl set which if I’m guessing correct will in the end have anywhere from 12 to 20 separate releases. So please do keep an eye out for those, as they’ll be releases this year.

And one more word to the wise: I have even earlier tapes than this that say The Smashing Pumpkins, which date back to before my meeting James through our mutual friend, Lenny; who was and is a wonderful person and has more to do with my success in music that just about anyone. Lenny still has the tapes that the 3 of us made together, so perhaps he can be coaxed into putting those out with me (someday). For now, we’ll just stay focused on those materials that I own and control, and won’t engender any lawsuits (add an LOL here). For as you’ll soon hear, much of what went on in those early days had little to do with the musicality or participation of others, and everything to do with who was able to inspire me to stop being as lazy as I naturally am; the best relationships in that being those who make their musical contributions too; and not just a personal one.



Share unique items from your own personal collection!

Send pictures and all information you might have to, and those selected will not only be featured on THE PANOPTICON, but receive insights from WPC as to whatever information he might (or might not!) recall.

Recent Posts
bottom of page