By Lorri Whiteside -
One of the earliest Studebaker Hawk venues was Rookie’s Sportsbar in Agoura Hills, a somewhat small neighborhood bar (no longer there) on the intersection of Thousand Oaks Blvd. and Kanan. There are a couple of things that I remember about Rookies.
In the early days of the band, Dan sang lead on a couple of songs because his voice suited the song better than Steve’s high tenor. One night at Rookies while performing “Riders on the Storm,” Dan could not remember the words to the second verse. The poor guy shook his head back and forth while the band repeatedly played the riff as I frantically tried to pantomime hand signals for “killer on the road” to help him out. Somehow, he finally got it and continued. He never forgot the words to that song again. When Ric came aboard, “Riders” became his lead vocal and remained an end of night staple for as long as the band had keyboards. It was one of my favorite Studebaker Hawk songs.
Another night at Rookies, a very drunk girl decided she wanted to sing. She kept trying to grab the mic and Ric did his best to dodge and keep her at bay. Finally, she grabbed Rick Kraft’s mic and began to bellow into it. Although in the middle of a song, Dan managed to reach over to the mixer and kill her mic, which irritated her to no end. When the song ended, Gary's wife, Beverly, called out to her, “If you do that again, I’m going to kick your ass” and they began shouting at each other. Now I’m sitting there thinking, “Good grief, if this continues I’ll have to help all 100 pounds of Beverly kick her ass.” I told Beverly that I would sit on the girl and she could punch her out. Luckily, it didn’t come to that.