Boneyard Media

Song ID: The Marina Swingers – “Casual” (1982)


Maybe you’ve been doing web searches for “going all the way to Casualfornia in my Volkswagen bus” the way I did off and on for many years, and now you’ve found yourself here. Maybe you, too, had an old VHS tape with fuzzy dubs from Night Flight or New Wave Theater circa 1982, including a clip from this mystery band featuring a front man in flippers, running shorts, a Mike Nesmith cap, and sunscreen on his lips and you had no clue who it was, and no sleuthing had seen you through. I finally had to follow a hunch and ordered this Sunken Treasures CD by the Marina Swingers, and lo, therein lay knowledge and peace.

Excerpts from the liner notes’ “cranky band history text” by keyboardist Esteban Elka:

“We weren’t sure if we wanted to be an artsy-intellectual new-wave act, a bloodthirsty dance-band, a multi-media comedy round-up, a surf/swing/big-band/punk ensemble or just an experiment in soul-splitting personality exploration (therapy that doesn’t work). So we did all of the above, often at the same time….

“We got to open for some zesty acts… Not one of them put in a good word for us with their management.

“…We don’t expect you to just listen to this CD. We think you’ll wish you had been there. We want you to be sorry that you weren’t. Where were you when we needed you?

“Come to think of it, where are we now?… One of us had a stroke, one of has leukemia, one of us had a brain tumor, two of us used drugs way too hard, one of us is wearing a crooked toupee, but two us are bald. One of us still gigs, most of us still record and we all walk, talk, pass wind and lie, except maybe the dead guy.

“Someday, you will be dead too.

“Special thanks to: A lot of you tried but it’s results that count. We didn’t make it, so the bulk of you shouldn’t expect a major pat on the fanny…”

For more information about the Marina Swingers, order Sunken Treasures on CD Baby, like I did.

The Marina Swingers – Casual (live at the Sweetwater in Redondo Beach, CA) (1982)

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