John Marsiglio - Guitar, Vocals
John Marsiglio and Alice Garbin decided to celebrate the ending of WWII by getting married and starting a family. Less than a year, but more than 9 months later, a boy child was born, John Anthony Marsiglio. By all accounts John had a normal childhood, despite having a freakishly large head. Even though he was raised on a steady diet of Polenta, Cod Liver Oil and Coffee, he soon started to display bizarre behavior. For example he had an unusual preoccupation with the letter "Q". He also liked to spend long periods of time alone in a dark closet. Around the age of 8, he started having blocks of time that couldn't be accounted for. For years it has been rumored he was abducted by aliens, although nothing can be substantiated. However during quiet times he could be heard screaming "The Twang's The Thang". His mom played the radio constantly exposing young John to the Founding Fathers of Rock 'N' Roll. It still is not known what kind of psychological damage this caused the boy. At the age of 9, he witnessed Ricky Nelson singing to some hot college babes on "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet". It was then he decided to play the guitar.
Fast forward to the age of 14. It was then he received his first electric guitar. Shortly after that, he was asked to join "The Beatles", but his parents wouldn't let him move to England, so he started his first band called "The Runaways", predating the lame California girl band by 10 years. The guys in the band hated John because he had the loudest amplifier. This problem has plagued him for years. At age 15 he started "The Hides" from the ashes of "The Runaways" and "The Ban-Lons" they cut some tracks at Gateway Studio's in Pittsburgh. Shortly after his 17th birthday "The Hides" released a single "When I See The One I Love", but the "B" side "Don't Be Difficult" received more attention. John promptly quit the band because he didn't sing "Don't Be Difficult".
After "The Hides" debacle John began studying for the Priesthood. While at the Seminary he started playing acoustic music. "The Smoky City Bros." were formed. Known for intricate harmony singing, they had a pretty good run. However playing acoustic music made John feel slightly less than masculine. He also didn't like sitting down while playing. Finally he decided to leave the Seminary, the calling of the Devils music proved to be too strong.
His next disappointment turned out to be the ill-fated "Johnny Mars and the Planets" actually the "Smoky City Bros." morphed into this band. Playing primarily Country Rock it was a talented group of musicians, but they wouldn't let John be the center of attention, so HELLO, we all know what happened next. Actually what happened next was "The Knobs". He finally returned to his Rock 'N' Roll roots. More importantly John started writing songs and singing them in a style people would actually listen to. After all thus time he has refused to go away.
Rick Baughman - Lead Guitar, Vocals
My musical odyssey began in my early teens when a few of my boyhood friends taught me some chords on an acoustic guitar. From there it was the usual path of playing in one garage/bar band after another throughout my life. Never seeking success, just happily surprised that I could play well enough to be working in a band, I found myself playing in a wide variety of musical acts. Here are some of the bands that I played regular gigs with:
Rock & Rye (country/bluegrass/blues)
Can II (Rock)
J Allen and Uptown Country (pop country)
The Dancekats (wedding)
The Knobs (Rock n Roll) Since 1991 for me, although the band has been around a lot longer.
Some of the great musicians and sound techs and others that I had the pleasure of working with:
(no particular order, sorry about spelling and if I forgot anyone)
Joe Charlesworth, Dave Palmer, Roger Tygart, Susie Hudock, Bob Gess, Joe Rhodes, Jim Hill, Joe Balsamo, Paul Rylander, George Hebrank, Tom Book, Jeff Jacobelli, Don Vargo, Don Vargo Jr., Dick Smoleck, Larry Hunter, Bill McCurdy, Bill Campbell, Red Baughman, Lee Rager, Joe Cunningham, Danny Davis, Larry Hixon, Pat Petracka, Lee Casa, Dave Koynok, Bob Derek, Steve Derek, John Harvey, Denny Moffa, Phillene Priestas Moffa, Mark Skero, Dewmyster, Billy Duff, Linda Luffy, Dick Wade, Bruce Laughlin, Joey Basista, Jerry Wingrove, Bob Wyle, Mark Zingarelli, Kevin Stiffler, Dave Hanner, Rick Lander, Cathi Rhodes, Lois Scott, Pete Oddo, Bob Hansel, Ricky Bruce, Dave Baughman, Phil Falcocchio, Steve Pagano, Tammy Colt, Johnny Marsiglio, Derek Baughman, P J Falcocchio.
Stephen Pagano - Bass, Vocals, Formerly Best Looking Knob
Born : July 10, 1960 (Brooklyn, NY). Moved to suburbs of Philly at age 3.
Gig : The KNOBS
Other : Freelance (all styles except - classical & ballet)
Location : Greensbug, PA
Schedule: Twice monthly, (anything greater than that is a small tour)
Repertoire : classic rock, blues, originals.
Gear : Basses, (Sadowsky, Fender, Hofner, Hagstrom & Godin acoustic).
Amplification, (Euphonicaudio amp & speakers 12 ", Epifani 2 10 " cab).
Effects, (Boss pedals, Line 6 POD).
Day Job : Project Manager for a data processing company. After playing
with the KNOBS for eight years, (I better keep this day job !!!).
Other gigs : High school basketball coach
Correspondence : 407 Meadowood Drive, Greensburg, PA 15601. Phone - (724)
836-0963. Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Started playing around age 9, and after a few lessons with a mean teacher,
I quit lessons, and ran away from home to look for a touring band. After
eleven years of looking, I finally hooked up with the Box Tops in 1981.
Although they were all not the original members of the band who recorded
the hits like, (the letter, cry like a baby, neon rainbow, soul deep,
etc.), they were all outstanding musicians. After a year of touring, I met
my wife, was married six months later, and retired from the road. I have
played with over 50 bands in my life time, doing weddings, clubs, parties,
benefits and studio work. I have taught both six string and bass guitar.
The most challenging type of music for me to play is jazz. I still aspire
to learn this style, and become a proficient player. I hope to one day
retire and play nothing but Polka music, and someday tour again. Until
then, I will be a KNOB, (I think this was my destiny). Thank you, God !!!
Tammy Colt - Vocals, Percussion, Sass
We'd like to say she was born a poor country girl, but since she's from Ligonier no one will believe she was poor. But a country girl she is. Tammy started singing at about age 5, when she entertained her parents' guests in the living room. Singing into a wooden banana--a makeshift microphone scavenged from an artistic rendition of a fruit bowl--she belted out "Cecilia" and "You Don't Mess Around With Jim" among others. The banana and many of the songs are long forgotten, but the lesson planted a seed in her head: singing = center of attention = much adulation.
That seed lay dormant for a long while. Tammy was a good little girl who dutifully practiced organ and flute. But when her barn chores and homework were done, she jumped around her bedroom, singing into a hairbrush to perfect her rock and roll persona.
At 18, she went off to Penn State. A girl can find a lot of trouble in Happy Valley and this girl found Heavy Metal. Later in Philadelphia, she sang in a few metal bands but spent more effort on dressing the part. Years later, back home in Western PA, she picked up an acoustic guitar and hit the coffeehouses and bars to help pay the bills. The turning point in her career was when she met Johnny Marsiglio in a Wendy's parking lot, where he handed over an audition tape. A few weeks later, she was performing at Biddlefest as a Knob. She has never been the same since.
Derek Baughman - Former Drummer, Curses, Spells
Theodoric (Derek) Honeydew Baughman was born into a royal lineage. The name Theodoric literally translates into “people ruler.” Once an heir to a prestigious button design empire, Derek showed signs at an early age of a more than just a passing interest in, socks. Having at one time more than 3000 pairs of elaborate and prestigious footwear. “Socks are very underrated.” Derek was quoted as saying. “No one pays attention to them but when you don’t have them on, you just don’t feel right do you?” Socks aside, Derek began what would be his most enduring and creative outlet in and around this same time.
Clock watching was where Derek would eventually shine. His creativity and spirited foray into clock watching was most impressive. Setting new standards by which all others would be judged. “Most people don’t even understand what goes into clock watching.” “And that, is disturbing.” said Derek. “When you go through your day the clock is always there.” “Tick Tock Tick Tock.” “I mean, where else can you get that?” Derek has had probably the most experience of anyone in clock watching. So much so he is considered by far the premier expert on the subject.
Having graduated first in his class at the honorable institute of higher learning in Cambridge; the esteemed college of Knowledge in Nihilistic Observational Bookkeeping, young Derek was awarded his country’s highest commendation in learning; The Gonadston Prize. Derek would parlay this award into several others with success in his studies. Winning such glamorous awards as, The Kings Golden Coccyx. The Inland Port Barrel Prize. The Great Areola in Academia. And E Pluribus Sphinctershun.
Derek has gone on to contribute many things to his people and larger; his world. His boundless energy and generosity are a tribute to those who have witnessed his genius firsthand. Derek’s first statue in his honor will be unveiled in his hometown in 2012. A fitting tribute to man of incredible substance, integrity, and most of all…modesty.
Also Derek can be seen playing drums in The Knobs.
Phil Falcocchio Sept. 4, 1946 - April 4, 2009. - Drums, Vocals, Chipped Ham Sandwiches
(Note - Sadly, Phil passed while playing a show with The Knobs at a venue in Irwin, Pa. April 4th 2009. This bio, written by Phil, is a great example of the humor that we in The Knobs and indeed everyone who came to know him, were treated to when in his company.)
Phil comes from a musical family. Unfortunately, we can’t talk about them because most of them are now in the witness protection program.
What we CAN tell you is that he began playing professionally at an early age. How early? Well, he started while in Jr. high School with “jazz” and “bop” groups in and around Pittsburgh. Does anyone still alive know what “bop” is?
We didn’t think so.
His rock & rolling began with a band called the Starfires. Next, he worked with The Fenways. Ever heard of them?
We didn’t think so.
Then the military called. Well actually they threatened to come after him if he didn’t show up. Not much rock & roll in the military.
After the military, he played in spots up and
down and then down and up the eastern coast with the Napoleonic Wars and Gingerbread. Ever heard of either of them?
We didn’t think so.
In between bands, he spent time at Allegro Studios, in NY doing assorted and sordid commercial work.
Returning to Pittsburgh, Phil went with The Racket Squad. (They used to be The Fenways). Ever heard of them?
We didn’t think so.
Eventually, his luck improved though, and he hooked up with ex-members of the Shondells to form Shadraque. What is a Shadraque? No one knows. That came and went.
In the early 70’s Phil worked with B.E. Taylor and four other guys in a Youngstown, OH based rock and soul band called Coconut. Coconuts don’t stay on the tree forever and Phil didn’t stay in this band either.
He went back to the studio, yada, yada, and more yada. Then back out of the studio to work with an assortment of blues, blues/rock, blues/oldie, old blues and just old, blue guys in bands.
At this point, Phil was spending a lot of time at the Giant Eagle. He claims it was the fresh vegetables and fruit that kept him coming back, but rumor has it that he went there for either the chipped ham or the music playing on the house PA. No one knows for sure.
It was at this point in his career, that Phil was thinking “Wow, what a splendid career I’ve had up to this point.” And, before he could test one more melon for freshness, like an apparition, Johnny Marsiglio appeared out of nowhere in front of the celery stand, and beckoned Phil.
Phil was mesmerized, but he hung onto the melon and said, “What the hell is that? And Johnny said, “It’s me Phil. If you’re not doin’ anything on Saturday, why don’t you come down to the Eagles and check out the band”.
Phil said, “I’d like to, but I’m busy. I need to bathe my dogs.” Johnny replied, “You’d rather bathe your dogs than hear the Knobs, featuring The Knobettes and Jimmy Sinclair on lights? Phil was confused (as usual), but as fate would have it, Phil was able to complete the bathing of his dogs just in time to see The Knobs play, watch the Knobettes knobbing and experience lighting by Mr. Sinclair.
He sat in for a song or two, and enjoyed the feeling he got when he played with the Knobs. It even felt better than the feeling he got being at the Giant Eagle. Johnny enjoyed the feeling he got when he watched Phil getting the feeling that he got.
“That felt pretty good.” Phil said to John. “If you’re ever in the market for a drummer, give me a call.”
Johnny said, “Why would I be looking for a drummer in the market?”
Phil said, “I don’t know. You’re the one who appeared in front of the celery stand. But I’ll tell you this… if you can learn some of the songs that they play on the Musak here at the Giant Eagle, and promise never to play “bop”, I might consider playing with the Knobs some day”.
Johnny said, “What the hell is bop?”
You know the rest, don’t you?
We didn’t think so.
P J Falcocchio - Drums, Vocals