"The gig was at Boulder’s Left-Hand Books. We called it 'Wall of Genius Presents: Strange Rituals.' A regular said she was curious what the strange rituals were going to be.
"Before then, I had never worn the weird clothing I'm famous for. That night, Ed Fowler brought outfits for me, Dena Zocher and Evan Cantor (who originally named me Little Fyodor). They consisted of utterly ridiculous shirts, ties and sports jackets from ARC thrift store. I'd never thought of dressing that way, but I took to it right away.
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"I was by far the least-accomplished musician. Ed and Evan told me to go on stage while they primed the audience with goofy recordings. I'm introverted, socially awkward, and had no idea what they expected. But as I stepped up in Ed's wacky clothing, I started dancing and feeling like I belonged on stage, doing weirdo things. It was a revelation! Every time I opened my mouth to 'sing,' one of the audience members started cracking up. I knew I had found my calling in life!"
Editor's Note: The Denver Bootleg is a series chronicling the history of local music venues by longtime Denver cartoonist Karl Christian Krumpholz. Visit Krumpholz's website to see more of his work.