As we went to record "CASA LOCO" in 1983, another curious thing was about to happen. We would have finished our 3rd recording as a group and "EYEWITNESS"(the 1st of the three) still hadn't been released in the U.S.! Needless to say, it was a very sad and frustrating situation, but, ahead we went. Again, and I know I'm repeating myself but, "CASA LOCO" is really THE recording most bassists and drummers point to as the ONE you've got to have.....the performances of Anthony Jackson and Steve Jordan here are just incredible. Without a record deal though, I had to again reach into my savings and finance the recording. It was done for $17,500 and, Anthony, Steve, and Manolo all played for nothing! The concept being: we're either all going to get wealthy together or we'll just stay as we are....but, together we'll be! A concept which I'm not certain Manolo grasped then...or years later for that matter....and he's one of my closest friends! Highlights here have to include: "Uncle Roy".....Steve's drumming(and this is what I get for telling him at the first rehearsal of the tune, "It's kind of an Elvin thing!")......the textures created by Anthony and Manolo....all those electronic sounds done by Manolo were performed LIVE!!! Steve's drum solo on "Casa Loco"(one of THE great drum solos on record anywhere, anytime!); "The Suitcase"......and, even the zany "The Breakaway".....this was a 'free' improvised composition.....Steve started playing this beat w/ his new hybrid-kit of acoustic drums + Simmons Drums, Anthony and Manolo joined-in...and the next thing you know.....a weird little piece was born. On "EYEWITNESS", "Auxiliary Police" had been composed the same way. It's composition where the 'attitude' is actually larger than the melodic content. In the end, after much hemming and hawing, Ron Goldstein, then of Antilles Records, stepped-in and decided to release both "EYEWITNESS" and "CASA LOCO" in the U.S.! What a huge relief! Still, they came out some 4 yrs. after we had recorded all three! Sadly, after having so many difficulties trying to get the group more exposure and more live work, we were just unable to hold things together, and the 'original' group would soon cease to exist. By the way, it wasn't until YEARS later, that my ex-wife Nancy pointed out that "CASA LOCO" is completely incorrect Spanish! Obviously, it should have been "CASA LOCA" but, Manolo thought I 'knew' what I was doing(often times a VERY bad assumption), and was just too shy to tell me! You see, as we used to rehearse in Steve Jordan's loft....a 'crazy house' of music if ever there was one.....I just took the Spanish words I knew, for 'house' and 'crazy,' and slapped them together not knowing that 'casa' was feminine! Oops!
Photo: Eyewitness outside The Pit Inn, Tokyo, Japan - by Tatsuhiko Tanaka