Founded in 1985, Polkacide was originally organized to play a one-night stand for the Deaf Club in San Francisco, California. The Deaf Club (an actual club for deaf people) had been hiring punk bands to perform. When it was suggested that some did not want a punk band, an inspired band leader and founder Ward Abronski, along with his long term girlfriend and Polkacide’s first drummer, Hayok Kay, formed a “really loud polka band” to play. When the gig was cancelled (ironically for noise abatement), Ward realized it was too good of an idea with too many great musicians, to just let die. He booked the band for San Francisco’s punk club The Mabuhay on February 8, 1985. Unfortunately, the Mab misspelled their names on the flyers but the rest, as they say, is history. Since then, Polkacide has played with such diverse groups as Sun Ra, Primus (Basa guest with his ocarina at The Fillmore), Brave Combo, k.d. lang, The Dead Kennedys, and many, many more.
The Line Up
Ward Abronski: saxophones,whistles,toys, ukulele, vocals, front man
Neil Basa: clarinet, ocarina,vocals, sargeant-at-arms
J.X. Lovejones: tenor sax, clarinet, toys, vocals
Alistair Shanks: bass, vocals, soul patch
John Hensley Nieuwguyski: trumpets, trombone, baritone horn, vocals, sex appeal
Max Baloian: guitar, percussion, accordian, vocals
Billy Dee Boom: drums
Aaron Seeman: accordion
Current and former members of Polkacide have played with: Flipper, Tragic Mullatto, Rova Saxaphone Quartet, MDC, The Geeks, Pig Latin, Texas Manglers, Fisherman’s Famous San Francisco Xylophonic Burlesque Orchestra, Duct, Bad Posture, The Sluglords, Goofball, Extra Action Marching Band, The Original Red Hot 1919 Blue Flame Jazzola Novelty Syncopators, Pennsylvania Mahoney and her Safe Sextet, The San Francisco Boys Chorus, Snakeoil Boys, Those Darn Accordions, Mad Maggies, The Kehoe Nation & more.