Gerard Van Herk

466 South Street, Corner of South Street and Maitland Street


My name is Gerard Van Herk I played in a band called Deja Voodoo that played at the Victoria Tavern a few times. We formed in ’81 in Montreal. Tony and I went to school together and hung out together and went to shows together and we decided to be a two-piece. And so we got rid of all the stuff that made it difficult to be a two-piece. We ended up just playing drums and guitar and singing. We called ourselves “slugabily” because we didn’t want other names but we were sort of punky, bluesy, rockabilly sort of stuff. Dave O’Halloran from What Wave magazine contacted us, bought some stuff off of us and said you should come down and so we trusted him and he set up a show for us at the Victoria Tavern.

I’m pretty sure this is the first time we played there, it was so loud inside the bar that we couldn’t tune so I had to go outside into the parking lot to tune my guitar because I didn’t have an autotonic tuner. There was some old guy there just having a pee I guess, some regular, he looked up at me and in huge shock said, “It’s Buddy Holly”, because I guess I vaguely looked like him and I’m not sure if he was kidding or not but I’m pretty sure he wasn’t. I remember also that I just stuck my guitar case on top of the stack of amps in the place while we did sound check and I guess we got too rowdy and started jumping around a lot and the guitar case fell down on Tony’s head so that probably wasn’t a good start to playing there. Tony held his sticks very hard and played very hard and at some point he started bleeding from his palms and this is during a set and he looked at his hands and the blood on his hands and held them out to the audience and said “Stigmata! I must be Jesus!”.