Jacinta Green hunches over the soundboard and waits for the members of Hott Profitt to amble in and set up. Shaped like a bumblebee, Green paces through the snaking wires and gives orders. She commands authority even though she’s only 15. Normally, she works the mixer while her father, Buck Green, plays host to the area go-go bands that use his Capitol Heights basement for practice space. Even though he hasn’t shown up yet, Jacinta is relaxed. “I taught myself. I watched my father. I like it ’cause of the boys,” she says, before quickly correcting herself: “No! It’s an interesting jobfor real.”
The topic of boys is the only thing that makes her uncomfortable. Yelling at them doesn’t. “You better have patience,” she hisses. Jacinta has been working the board since she was 11; she’s completely comfortable around it. The soundboard is littered with the contents of her purseknobs and equalizer slides mix with watermelon-flavored Fruit Glossies and Winterfresh gum wrappers.
Arriving as the members of Hott Profitt pack up their equipment, Buck, the 36-year-old patron saint of lost go-go bands, swats away the band’s complaintsabout the sound mix, about his absencewith a few shrugs. He has been involved in the local music scene since he was 14. He graduated from playing guitar and bass in an R&B outfit to managing a go-go band. And now he’s turned his house into a rehearsal studio where keyboards crowd the foyer and wires, cables, mikes and broken drum heads clutter the basement. It’s as if all of go-go history crashed his house, stayed a decade, and created a dusty, gray heap.
Now, Raw Image is shaking the walls with its timbales. “God, this has got to stop,” warns Buck’s wife, also named Jacinta Green, from the kitchen.
Sucking on crab leg husks on his front stoop, Buck says his house used to be a real housethe basement had an entertainment center and video games for his six kids, and the back yard featured grass instead of mud, cement chips, and chicken bones. Along the curb sit two vans, one called the “Battlestar” and another called “Lightning,” that are fast becoming storage sheds. Green thinks the post-Ibex scene risks becoming as immobile as his two vehicles. “Most of the bands will grow old and have nothing left still trying to do what they know,” he says. “They fall into a rut and don’t even know it. And there’s something I can do about it.”
But Buck is also in a trapa $20,000 trap. That’s how much go-go has put him in debt. He charges bands $40 for two hours, but he doesn’t always get paid. He wishes he could start a real recording studio, one that would give him a little money and offer bands a chance to get out of his basement and into the stores. “I have these great ideas,” he explains. “But do I do it if I have to cut your throat? Is it worth it?” He hopes to get the money he needs from his real estate gig; he knows it’s not coming from go-go.
His daughter is learning that part of the go-go game, too. Jacinta just wants the $11 Raw Image owes her. She follows after the band members and quickly comes back. “They gave me a dollar,” she says. Her father just nods.Jason Cherkis