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The Termite Home Page

Welcome to the Termites' Home Page! Not to be outdone by any other mainstream artists, the Termites have gone on-line. It's so '90s.

Who are we?

The Termites are a diverse musical combo, with interests spanning all musical forms. We have explored Rock and Roll, Blues, Jazz, Bluegrass, Big Band, Polkas, Country, R&B, and Whaling songs. We have mastered none of these.

New Stuff

Updated 3 May 1996, the Termite Home Page now has downloadable Termite Sound clips, two ways to contact the Termites, and lyrics to a Termite song that was nearly lost in the mists of antiquity.

Way-Cool Termite Stuff

Some new stuff

History of the Band

In 1957, the D-Man was playing the Blues club circuit in Chicago. There he met the H-Man who was in town for the annual Polka Festival. They started to play together and realized that they had a unique sound. With empty pockets and dreams of success in their hearts, they hopped a freight train bound for the music capitol of the world - Camden, NJ.

While on the train they met a railroad bum by the name of BC-Man who taught them many tender train songs, some involving as many as three chords. This greatly enhanced the musical knowledge of the D-Man and the H-Man.

Upon arriving in Camden, they encountered an unemployed electrical engineer named Z-Man who was washing out his lab smock in a wash tub on the banks of the mighty Cooper River. The addition of the washtub gave the band the hard-driving backbone it had been lacking. From this sound came forth the musical legacy that is today known around the world as the Termites.

History of the HuberPhone

While employed as a tape recorder engineer in 1962, the Z-man was designing what would become the progenitor of all modern recording equipment -- the RDR 12. Unlike modern recorders, this machine used a high-power vacuum system to "suck" information from the surface of the tape during playback.

During a late night debugging session, Z-man inadvertently punched a hole in one of the machine's many vacuum hoses with a rusty screwdriver. This caused the hose to emit a low pitched moan as the very life of the recorder slipped away. Like a bolt from the blue, Z-man was struck by the awesome musical potential of this serendipitous event.

During his spare time, Z-man began experimenting with various hose lengths and mouthpiece designs, trying to refine the sound until it met the Termite's notoriously high standards for musical perfection. Finally, in December of 1965, he achieved the deep, lush tone he had heard so clearly in his mind. This was the very sound which would eventually provide the haunting introduction to the Termite's 1994 recording of "Dawn of the Termites".

Over the years, the HuberPhone has enjoyed a rich and colorful history. A few of the significant moments in its development are listed below:

Additional hose clamps added to provide a muted effect.

John Lemon records the HuberPhone backwards for several tracks on the Beagles "Let Me Be" album. Sadly, the tapes from these tracks are lost in a mysterious dumpster fire and never heard by the general public.

First successful demonstration of the Rotating HuberPhone at the Newport Jazz Festival.

The Camden Wind Ensemble attempts an all-HuberPhone arrangement of Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumble Bee". Two performers are blinded instantly, and seventeen audience members are trampled to death in the ensuing panic.

Less Pawl adds an electric pickup.

Z-man records "Dawn of the Termites", considered by music historians to be the best HuberPhone performance of all time.

Careful listeners will hear the HuberPhone in popular recordings spanning all musical tastes. Such pop hits as Murry Jeff Walker's "Mr. Spurjangles" and M.C. Screwdriver's "Please Touch This" are recent examples. It is this popularization of the HuberPhone, along with its profound, one-note simplicity, that has led to its acceptance as today's premier musical instrument.

See the Termite Photo Gallery for a picture of the HuberPhone in action. You can also hear the HuberPhone in the Termite Sounds section.

Termites' Trip to Danville, VA.

In 1993, the Termites made their historic trip to Danville, VA. to participate in the annual Old '97 Day festival. It was held at Auctioneer's Park in 100 degree heat, and the Termites were never asked to return. The Termites' whirlwind itinerary follows:

Termite Discography

In 1994, the Termites recorded their landmark debut album, Out of the WoodWork. This recording, already out of print and therefore a rare collector's item, launched an entirely new musical genre now widely refered to as BlueRockTechnoJazzGrass 'n Roll.

Guest Musicians
"Be Sharp" Monty appears courtesy of Shotokan Records. Pat "the K-Woman" appears courtesy of Pink Cadillac Records.

D-Man's guitars provided by Lou's Musical Instrument Rental and Fast Food Emporium.
BC-Man's guitars are of unknown make and origin.
H-Man's Accordion provided by Chrysler Corp.
Z-Man's washtub provided by Manoa Paint and Hardware, Havertown, Pa.

Recorded on 16 August 1994 at Hard Hat Studios, Haddonfield, NJ.

The Termites would like to thank:
Fran "an actual Hooter" Smith, Jr. Ted the engineer. Mook, for the one stinking-lousy phone call he made for this entire project: Thanks, Dave! Special thanks to Ampex Corporation: the big order is on its way, we promise. Z-man would like to thank Mrs. H, whose constructive criticisms were often discouraging. H-Man would like to thank his parents for drafting him into Accordion lessons at age seven. BC-Man would like to thank Mom, Dad (O.F.), KK, Brother Bro for their support, Tex of the Carson Valley Boys, Roy Acuff (the King), and Hank Williams for the inspiration, Bill Monroe for Bluegrass Music, and Steve Brody for jumping the tracks. May the mighty T ever stand - 650 WSM.

Some Song Lyrics

And just added...

"Wreck of the Old '97"

On a cold frosty morn' in the month of September the clouds were hanging so low. Ninety-seven pulled out from Washington station like an arrow shot from a bow.

Oh, they gave him his orders at Monroe, Virginia, sayin, "Steve, you're way behind time. This is not 38, it's The Old 97, you must put her into Spencer on time."

So he turned around and said to his black, greasy fireman, "Shovel on a little more coal, And when we cross that White Oak Mountain, you can watch Old 97 roll."

But it's a mighty rough road from Lynchburg to Danville, the line's on a three mile grade. It was on that grade that he lost his air brake, you should see what a jump he made.

And then a telegram came to Washington Station And this is how it read: "Oh that brave Engineer that run Old 97, is lyin' in Danville dead."

'Cause he was goin' down grade doin' 90 miles an hour when the whistle broke into a scream. He was found in the wreck with his hand on the throttle, scalded to death by the steam.

Now all you ladies had better take warning, from this time on and learn, Never speak harsh words to your true lovin' husband, he may leave you and never return.

"Monty Got Run Over by a Scanner"

(...sung to the tune of Grandma Got Run Over by a Raindeer...)

Monty got run over by a scanner, walking down to Lab-D Saturday night. You can say there's no such law as Murphy's, but as for me and Monty we see the light.

He'd been working too much O.T., and we begged him not to go. But he had to finish the testing, so he staggered down the hall to run the show. Well we found him the next morning and we couldn't believe it all. He was pointing with amazement, at the spot where the record-amps hit the wall.

Monty got run over by a scanner, walking down to Lab-D Saturday night. You can say there's no such law as Murphy's, but as for me and Monty we see the light.

It's no fun without disaster, while the customer's right there. There is no sound quite as awful, as the sound of six heads flying through the air. Now our customer and bosses, are all standing there in black. And they just can't help but wonder, should they sign the unit off or send it back.

Monty got run over by a scanner, walking down to Lab-D Saturday night. You can say there's no such law as Murphy's, but as for me and Monty we see the light.

Now we're all so proud of Monty, 'Cause he handled it so well. If not for self-destructing scanners, who knows how many of these things we could sell. There's no Christmas break for Monty, he'll be fixing the T.U. They should never build a scanner, with double-sided tape and crazy glue.

Monty got run over by a scanner, walking down to Lab-D Saturday night. You can say there's no such law as Murphy's, but as for me and Monty we see the light.

"Pardon Me, Ross"

(...sung to the tune of Chattanooga Choo Choo...)


Hi there Ross, whatcha say? Step aside partner, it's my day. Bend an ear and listen to my version of a really solid REC-South excursion.


Pardon me Ross, where are the pinch rollers we ordered? "There in PMI... now I'm leaving, good bye." Can you report on the status of our boards? "At REC-South they are stuck... now I'm leaving, good luck."

You leave the comp'ny when we need you, thats a smart thing to do. On the golf course every day, for a round or two. Dinner in this diner, nothing could be finer, than to leave it all behind you and retire.

When you hear the P.A. page you into Lab-R, then you know that trouble cannot be very far. Shovel on the B.S., you just could'nt care less, if we ever find out where are parts are.

There's gonna be a little party when you leave. We won't tell you where, so that you won't be there. We're gonna cry if we never get our boards back. We're glad to loose you, Ross - but where the heck are our boards?

Glad to loose ya, glad to loose ya. Where's our boards?
Glad to loose ya, glad to loose ya. Get our boards.
Glad to loose ya, glad to loose ya. Get our boards.
Glad to loose ya, glad to loose ya.

We're glad to loose you, Ross - but where the heck are our boards?

"Funky but Cheap"

(...sung to the tune of Funky but Chic...)

We're wearin' little blue coats that we ripped off from the lab (Funky, Funky, but Cheap). We keep are instruments stored in little anti-static bags (Funky, Funky, but Cheap).

We don't play music not too fancy or sweet. We just play stuff that we know how to keep the beat. Come on, boys, lets mix up with feet. Let's whip up something that is Funky but Cheap.

Funky, Funky, but Cheap! Funky, Funky, but Cheap!
Funky, Funky, but Cheap! You're Funky, but... Funky, but...!

We just got back from a big job down in Danville (Funky, Funky, but Cheap). At the airport back security had a handful (Funky, Funky, but Cheap).

We don't play places not to fancy or neat. Next time you see us we'll be playin' out on the street. These lab coats get hot when you play out in the heat. We keep cool by playin' Funky but Cheap.

Funky, Funky, but Cheap! Funky, Funky, but Cheap!
Funky, Funky, but Cheap! You're Funky, but... Funky, but...!

"The Ultra-Blue Blues"

This is a song about what happens when you try to make a tape recorder go faster than it really should. It previously existed only on widely scatterd envelope-backs and Eskimo Pie wrappers. It is presented here, in its entirety, for the first time. A deeper blue than blue, it's the Ultra-Blue Blues:

I woke up this mornin', my head was spinnin' 'round.
And all in my ears I heard that 1X scanner sound.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues... too many EU's and TU's.
No matter how hard I try, just can't lose those Ultra-Blues.

The scanners givin' us grief, we all got disbelief.
The only thing we don't get - is some schedule relief.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

When the 400 scanner crashed, it sure didn't make us proud.
The only difference now is it'll be eight times as loud.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

In case you haven't heard, we all just got the word.
It'll all be over soon - on August 23rd.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

We started at 400, now we're up to thirty-two.
If you wanna go a little faster - just add on another TU.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

The software's got some bugs, of this there is no doubt.
When you press EJECT on this one - on that one the tape pops out.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

The software's got some problems, I swear it must be cursed.
When you tell one to go FAST FORWARD - the other seven take off in reverse.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

When I come into work each mornin', it's like the coffin gets another nail.
The only thing to do is put my head on the post and wail.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

We ask for money, they said "No". We ask to de-scope, they said "No".
We ask for support - and the made Mooky PMO.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

We can record very swiftly. We can playback really nifty.
The only thing we can't do - is sign off on the DD-250.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

After workin' seven long years, we finally shipped one off to Jack.
He opened the crate, popped in a tape, then it broke so he shipped it right back.
I got the Ultra-Blue Blues...

SpoMax Productions

Termite video services are provided exclusively by SPOMax Productions.

Termite Photo Gallery

Termite Sounds

Here are some Termite sounds that you can download.

How to Contact the Termites

You can send fan mail and comments to the Termites by clicking here. Please be patient, though, as the sheer volume of fan mail the Termites receive places a heavy burden on the our full time staff, and we Termites are far to aloof to respond personally.

Could this be any easier?

Number of visitors to the Termite Home Page so far: 647,287,617,441,783,807

This page last updated on 3 May,1996
Copyright © 1996 WoodPile Records