Many lbs. ago, in a Galaxy 500 far, far, away, and not long after the Dark Ages there was a period in time known as, “The Big Hair Band Era”. Who knew that during this time a chance meeting of 5 rockers at a WHAM concert would change their plans for the weekend? Coincidentally they had all shown up in hopes of slapping the 5 o’clock shadow off of George Michael, but instead ended up getting drunk and deciding to form a band.
Well, not really, one could only dream. Before Akasha there was Bad Habit which came about as a result of the cliché “musical differences” in Brownsville, Texas. Dave Valdez was already an established drummer when he decided to become an established guitar player. Which he did, when he joined forces with Chris Rivera (an already established guitarist) to form Ambush. Ambush was rounded up by Rick Hall on Bass, Richard Coronado (not to be confused with the famous explorer, who was not much of a drummer) on drums and Lance Binder on vocals. Dave had actually snuck back in to High School to look for Lance after hearing him sing for another local band, Rage to ask him if he wanted to join. Ambush existed long enough to hit the road for a couple of small tours across the south and southwest.
Eventually, the “musical differences” reared its ugly head and the some members of Ambush members went their separates ways (one disappeared without a warning over-night and was not heard from for years, but that is another story).
Dave, having established himself as a guitarist (finally) decided to join forces with another local guitar player Rick Del Castillo, who had established himself at just 15 years of age. Rick would be known as “that 15 year old guitar player” for another 10 years thus, becoming the only guitar player known to ever successfully stop aging. Rick had been in Rage with Lance.
The band now consisted of Coronado on drums and Lance remained as vocalist. They enlisted a veteran of several local bands, Oscar Batiz (pronounced Batiz) to play bass and decided to take the name Bad Habit.
This incarnation lasted from 1983-1984 when Batiz and Coronado made their exit. The remaining members auditioned several drummers before enlisting Rey Guajardo who at 17 became the youngest member of the band, with the Birth Certificate to prove it. Finding a bass player was especially difficult due mostly to the “great bass player shortage of 84”…everybody remembers that one don’t they? After countless auditions they decided to buy Lance a bass and teach him how to play, and by the way Lance, “you gotta sing too!” 9 Months later Lance made his debut and didn’t look back (stiff neck you know).
This incarnation lasted until 1985 when Dave Valdez made his exit and the remaining members decided to go three piece mainly because there was only 3 members left. Shortly thereafter they hit the road.
Bad Habit became Akasha when they released their debut LP in 1989.
They were on the road from 1985 thru 1989. (Too) Many adventures later Rey Guajardo decided to leave the band.
The last incarnation…finally…enlisted Hector Batiz (also pronounced Batiz) to replace Rey. Hector was Oscar Batiz’s younger and better looking brother (he made me write that) brother (see 1st incarnation).
They all moved to Memphis, TN in 1991. Chuck left the band shortly after their arrival and Rick left in 1992.
Providing Sound and Lighting were Joel Flores and Carlos (chuck) Garcia; Joel had known Dave Valdez since junior high and Joel knew Chuck since high school. Both were working on finding a job when the gig came up and learned on the job.
James Pike was a friend and guitar player with more knowledge of electronics then should be legally allowed who saved our equipment from drunken cowboys on acid and other misuses many times.
Patrick Buckingham was an old friend’s of Lance whom we ran across on the road (not literally) and enlisted after Pike left to start his own business. Pat brought a whole new meaning to “no prior experience necessary.”, and was once a band (High School) manager.
Mike Gonzales was another guitar player who did one tour with the band; his help was appreciated by all and will always treasure his pea sandwich recipe.
A splendid time was had by all…most of the time.