The Inactivists

The Inactivists

BandComedy

You've never seen anything like it! Creative lyrics, style and instrumentation – including theremin, ukelele, accordion & sax. Angry Lounge Nerd Funk Rock! Frank Zappa meets the Muppets, in prison. Described as, “ playing a regular gig inside David Lynch's head.” Descriptive words include “ZANY”.

Biography

This is a love story.

Sort of.

Six years ago, Matt Sumner answered an on-line ad, and couple of days later met up with a strange man at My Brother’s Bar. This was the beginning of a strange yet beautiful long-term relationship. You see, the ad was placed on musicmates.com (this was in the pre-CraigsList days) and the man he met was guitarist and ukulele-player Scot Livingston. As a bassist, Matt had looked at Scot’s rather long ad searching for musicians for quite some time before actually getting drunk enough to respond. Not that Matt disagreed with anything in Scot’s diatribe, he just figured that anyone that verbose would be a controlling pain in the ass to work with. He was only half-right. Matt and Scot met at My Brother’s Bar (now the traditional Inactivists’ meeting spot) and exchanged CDs of half-finished song ideas and other demos. A week later Matt and Scot met up again where the were now about half-dozen newly written songs. Which is a good thing, since Scot had gotten frustrated with the solo singer-songwriter doing acoustic numbers at the coffee shop open mics and decide to start to booking shows as a band under the name The Inactivists in the delusional hope that someday a band would form around him. Luckily, Matt already knew a saxophonist and drummer who he thought would be interested in this project. Unfortunately the only day they had to practice (October 19, 2003) was the day before the next show that Scot had booked at Pink-E’s. So a dozen original tunes were practiced real fast and the next day, played pretty well given how talented and game the musicians were. Without time for another rehearsal, there was another show booked two nights later. Matt mentioned that he had been corresponding with a theremin player who also might be interested. Her name was Victoria Lundy and she walked onto the stag of the Blue Mule having no idea what the band sounded like or even what they looked like. But it worked. Sure there have been the usual band personnel shifts while looking for the right combination of talent and interest, but now the Inactivists have finally found their penultimate line-up. The drummer wasn’t too hard to find, since he ended up marrying Scot’s cousin, while saxophonist and accordion player, Pattie Melt was actually a refugee from an unfortunately aborted Surf-Tiki-Lounge project where she played with Victoria.

In the last five years the Inactivsts have drunk countless pitchers of hard cider at My Brother’s Bar, recorded four albums (five if you count the Xmas album) and are nearly done with the next one; they have played over 103 shows; opened for acts as diverse as the Red Elvises, Golden Arm Trio, Cecil “P-Nut” Daniels, and Captured! By Robots; they have yelled at the Hobby Lobby in Arvada and have serenaded protestor at the DNC on the 16th Street Mall; they have staged the only performance of the rock opera “Jahoprah & The Golden Guitar” with a cast of dozens; they have helped promote the Art Rock community in Denver by joining and helping organize the D.A.R.C.; they have had their theremin enshrined in the Aurora Natural History Museum, and smashed an acoustic bass guitar at the D-Note,; they have been joined on-stage by such luminaries as Little Fyodor & Babushka, Abbie Norm, and Tim from Yerkish; they have received dozens of glowing articles, even once being compared to “watching the Muppet Show in prison”; enduring thousands of questions from people unfamiliar with their instrumentation; but most importantly the Inactivists have had a good time while making good, strange music.

Lyrics

Fantastic Chair

Written By: Scot Livingston/The Inactivists

It’s ten feet tall and trimmed in leather

The back's been spiked, the front's been feathered

Safety orange, and lime green stripes

With chocolate swirls, and Christmas lights

What a chair!

Everybody just wants a fantastic chair

They’re willing to kill for the chance to sit there

It's not a love seat, no - don't go that far

It's not an easy chair, but it ain't hard

It’s ten feet tall and trimmed in leather

The back's been spiked, the front's been feathered

Safety orange, and lime green stripes

With chocolate swirls, and Christmas lights

What a chair!

Everybody just wants some amazing hair

They’re willing to dye for the chance at such flair

The haircut that can be seen from outer space

Will put the other hairdos back in their place

It’s ten feet tall and trimmed in leather

The back's been spiked, the front's been feathered

Safety orange, and lime green stripes

With chocolate swirls, and Christmas lights

What a chair!


Both of Us Do

Written By: The Inactivists / Scot Livingston

Cigarettes and magazines, empty jars of Vaseline
I put them away in case that some day
You change your mind and come on back
Until that day your stuff is packed
I’ve got lots of space now that you’ve put me in my place

But I can’t watch my pornos no more they remind me of you
The peeping tom who lives next door is missing you too
Yes it’s true both of us do

You believed my lies as though they’re fact and yet somehow did not react
The way that I hoped, which one of us is the bigger dope?
You wanted to move in with me did that mean you wanted me
In the same way or for a place to stay

But I can’t watch my pornos no more they remind me of you
The peeping tom who lives next door is missing you too
Yes it’s true both of us do

I like the girls who don’t like me
There’s no risk of rejection when there’s a certainty
And if you ever deign to be my lover some other’s my destiny

But I can’t watch my pornos no more they remind me of you
The peeping tom who lives next door is missing you too
Yes it’s true both of us do

Cigarette and magazines, empty jars of Vaseline

The Girl on the Bus

Written By: The Inactivists / Scot Livingston

have seen you here and there, in calico and purple hair
In leather spikes and derby hat, with overalls and brand new spats
Are you just out of your mind, fashion genius, or are you blind?
Either way I think you’re hot, in ways that well dressed girls are not

I get from your sense of style, that you are sassy smart and wild
Maybe you want to disguise, you cute self from those kind of guys
Who only like the pretty girls, in pink lipstick and long blonde curls
You scare off the shallow types, who can’t get past the clothes you like

The girl on the bus

I bet that you won’t like me, ‘cause I like you from what I see
You hate to be judged by your looks, by your cover and not your books
But since I’ve never talked to you, How am I going to know just who
You really are deep down inside, the inner beauty that you hide

The girl on the bus
The girl on the bus
The girl on the bus

Of course this is all a guess, based on the way I’ve seen you dress
You could only dress this way, because it’s really laundry day
Or maybe it’s part of your job, or you might just be such a slob
Who really doesn’t even care, about her clothes, her looks, her hair

Fresh 'n Lemony

Written By: The Inactivists / Scot Livingston

Fresh and lemony
Common camaraderie
You’ll get yours some day
All you’ve got to do is wait

And I will
I will
I will
I will

Watch your back they say
Often every day
You’ll get yours and mine
Take the time to compromise

It’s on the side
On the side
On the side
On the side

Stick your finger up your nose call it macaroni
Macaroni Macaroni call it pizza pie
Holy moley ravioli pizza pie on rye
If I had a needle I would stick you in the eye
Stick you in the eye

Bearded Nuns in Bondage

Written By: The Inactivists / Scot Livingston

You and I are the best joke in town
My whole life’s a set-up to one of your put-downs
I’m too young to run and too dumb to crawl
At the come-as-you-are masquerade ball
All coked up and I’m ready to fight
Bearded nuns in bondage on a Saturday night

She dumped me for my identical twin
Saying, “You wouldn’t hurt a fly, ‘cause the fly would win”
I said “You don’t mean to hurt me, of that I’m certain
Yet every time I’m near you I wind up hurting”
And now I’m all coked up and I’m ready to fight
Bearded nuns in bondage of a Saturday night

Upset already, ego cat go
We got dozens for the money but none for the show
If we’re only gonna use 10% of our brain
Let’s get half-drunk and 2/5 insane

Spank me, sister Harry

This is the last leg I’ve got on which to stand
With my poker face and an open hand
She left me broken-hearted with nothing but a smile
I gave her four inches, but she took a mile
All coked up and ready to fight
Bearded nuns in bondage on a Saturday night

That’s a habit I want to get into

Trying to train a Saint Bernard to orally please us
Awash in the menstrual blood of gay Nazi Jesus

Discography

2004 Self Titled Debut
The first album by Denver's finest theremin and ukulele rock band, The Inactivists
2005 Disappointing Follow-up
Quirky, theremin - addled funk? Clarinet-driven spazz-lounge? Jazz-baiting excursions into the darkest underbelly of the 4H Club? It's all that and more, Poindexter.
2007 Dreaded Concept Album
Holy Toffutti, Batman. The Inactivists strike again with everything from demented hip-hop to sambas in Esperanto and odes to art loving gorillas, with ukuleles and theremin
2009 Love Songs (and other songs (about love))
Theremin, ukulele and accordion rock band playing songs about love, sort of.

Set List

We have 4 hours of original material, and 1 hour of covers.