This is work in progress! Here's what I've come up with so far, and the kind of detail I'm interested in---for example, I want to get line up changes down to the month. Any help would be appreciated.
Only bands that have an album/single count (unless there's a real reason to deviate). The lineup in the album is what's taken to be the right one, and besides, it's easy to differentiate between the various lineups based on the album release. Currently it's simply a straight listing of lineups, with indentations to indicate branches. The final version will be a cladogram (tree-like). The notes contain additional detail about lineup and lineup changes.
See the credits for who contributed in making this possible. This family tree has come a long way, and is an excellent peek into the evolution of Bay Area music (at least from one perspective).
Blizzard (? - ?)  Larry LaLonde (guitars) Steve Gibb (vocals) Jeff Becerra (bass) Mike Minor (drums) Possessed (? 1983 - ? 1988) Jeff Becerra (vocals/bass) Larry LaLonde (guitars) Mike Torrao (guitars)  Mike Sus (drums) Tommy Crank Band (? - ?) Les Claypool (bass) Primate (? 1984 - ?) [1.5] Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars) Blind Illusion (? 1984/85 - ? 1988)  Mark Biederman (vocals/guitars) Les Claypool (bass) Larry LaLonde (guitars) Mike Miner (drums)  Primate (? - ?) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars) Perm Parker (drums) Primate (? - ?) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars) Peter Libby (drums) Primus (? - ?) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Robbie Bean (drums) Todd Huth (guitars) Primus (Jun 86 - Jun 88) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Tim "Curveball" Wright (drums)  Todd Huth (guitars) Porch (? 94 - present) Todd Huth (guitars) Christopher Frey (bass) David Ayer (drums) Freaky Executives (? 85 - ? 89) Jay Lane (drums)  Primus (Jul 88 - Dec 88)  Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars) Jay Lane (drums) Charlie Hunter Trio/Quartet (? 93 - 6/95) Charlie Hunter (guitars) Calder Spanier (saxophone)  Scott Amendola  Jay Lane (drums)  David Ellis (saxophone)  Alphabet Soup (? - present) Sam Biggers Wilbur Krebs (bass) C.B. (vocals) Deszon Claiborne (drums) Kenny Brooks (sax) Dred Scott (keys) Jay Lane (drums) RatDog (1995 - present)  Rob Wasserman (bass) Bobby Weir (rhythm guitar, vocals) Jay Lane (drums)  Jeff Chimenti (keyboards) Kenny Brooks (saxaphone) Mark Karan (lead guitar) Dave Ellis (saxophone) [8.1] Matthew Kelly (harp) [8.2] Dave McNabb [8.3] Vince Welnick [8.4] Johnnie Johnson [8.5] Mookie Segal [8.6] Major Lingo (? 87 - ?) Sally Stricker (bass, vocals) Tony Bruno (slide guitar) John Ziegler (guitar, vocals) Tim "Herb" Alexander (drums) Major Lingo (? 87 - ?) [8.8] Linda Cushma (bass, vocals) Tony Bruno (slide guitar) John Ziegler (guitar, vocals) Tim "Herb" Alexander (drums) Primus (? 89 - Jul 96) [8.9] Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Larry LaLonde (guitars) Tim Alexander (drums) Laundry (? 94 - present) Tim Alexander (drums) Ian Varriale (stick) Tom Butler (guitar) Toby Hawkins (vocals) Sausage (? 94 - present) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars, vocals) Jay Lane (drums) The Limbomaniacs (? 84 - ? 92)  [9.5] Kelly Smith (vocals) Mark "M.I.R.V." Haggard (vocals, guitar) Tony "Butthouse" Chaba (bass, vocals) Brain Mantia (drums) Pete Scaturro (machines, organ) Greg Thompson (saxaphone) Big City (? 95 - early 87) [9.6] Pete Scaturro (machines, organ) Joe Gore (guitars) Brian "Brain" Mantia (drums) Caca (May 92 - present)  Ray White (guitar, vocals (ex-Zappa band)) Marc "MIRV" Haggard (guitar) Tony "Butthouse" Chaba (bass) Brain Mantia (drums) Larry LaLonde (guitar) Pete Scaturro (keyboards) Matt Wheeler (Zappa vocals) Zoe Ellis (backing vocals) Brian Kehoe (The Devil on Titties n Beer) Praxis (? 92 - ? 95)  Buckethead (guitar, toys) Bill Laswell (composer) Bernie Worrell (synthesiser, clavinet, and vital organ) AF Next Man Flip (turntable, mixer) Brian "Brain" Mantia (drums) Bootsy Collins (space bass, vocals) MCM (? 87 - present)  MCM/Miles (vocals) Brian "Brain" Mantia (drums) Hector (guitars) Gary (guitars) Danny (bass) Pause (turntables) M.I.R.V. (? 93 - ? 96) Mark Haggard (vocals, guitars) Les Claypool (vocals, bass, drums) Brian Mantia (drums) House (bass, machines) Pete Scaturro (machines, organ) M.I.R.V. (? 96 - ? present) Mark Haggard (vocals, guitars) Jeff Gomes (drums)  Craig McFarland (bass) Brian Kehoe (guitar, vocals) Primus (Jul 96 - present) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Larry LaLonde (guitar) Brian Mantia (drums)  Les Claypool and the Holy Mackerel (Aug 96 - present)  Les Claypool (bass, vocals, drums, guitars) Colonel Les Claypool's Fearless Flying Frog Brigade (?00 - ?) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Todd Huth (guitars, vocals) Jay Lane (drums) Jeff Chimenti (keyboards) Skerik (saxophone)  Eenor (guitars) Colonel Les Claypool's Fearless Flying Frog Brigade (2002? - present) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Mike Dillon (guitars, vocals) Tim Alexander (drums) Skerik (saxophone)  Eenor (guitars) Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains (2002? - present) Les Claypool (bass, vocals) Buckethead (guitars, vocals) Brian Mantia (drums)  Bernie Worell ------------------------------------------------------------------------ NOTES ------------------------------------------------------------------------ 0. Jeff Becerra joined Possessed first, and I believe he was the replacement singer for Barry Fisk, and later he brought Larry Lalonde to the band. Mike Minor went to Blind Illusion. 1. Torrao brought back the Possessed name again in 1993 with a new lineup and two demos, but they seem to have laid low after that. 1.5. Primate started in 1984 with Les on bass and vocals, Tod Huth on guitar, and a drum machine (the drum machine lasted for a very short time, they got a real drummer). 2. Blind Illusion had existed for years before the one album in 1988. In high school, Les played with them and many other members were in it including Bryan Kehoe and Dave Godfrey of Heathen. Les has been in Blind Illusion on three different occassions. After Les left Blind Illusion for the first time he joined a band that toured bars in the area. 3. Later to Baby Snufkin (? - present), featuring Scrote (vocals, guitar) Mike "Mig" Miner (drums), Stammi [Tom ?] (bass, vocals), and Jab (trumpet, vocals, percussion) since 94 or 95. 4. To MCM after Brain left. Tim "Curveball" Wright started a cover band in 1989 that featured Brian Keyhoe, House, Brain, Adrian Isabel, and various horn players. They covered great 70s funk songs. A year later House and Brain were replaced by Arion Salazar/Fungo Mungo and Michael Urbano (drums) who later played with Spent Poets and Adam Gates' post-Spent project. They (Curveball) were also then joined by Zoe ellis and Caitlin who were also starting the Mofessionals. Curveball got to be a big draw in the bay area. Mike Urbano left to join Spent Poets and was replaced by Jeff Gomes/Fungo/MIRV. Some time later Brian Keyhoe quit Curveball and was replaced briefly by Ray White of Frank Zappa's band. Ray jammed a show or two with Caca at some point. Ray didnt work out in Curveball very long. During this time Brian started a band before hooking up with MIRV called Acme Pimps Inc. This band had Brian (guitar,vocals), Arion Salazar(bass), Jeff Gomes(drums), and Adrian Isabel. They played early versions of MIRV songs. Roughly a year later Curveball (the person) introduced Arion Salazar to Stephen Jenkins then starting a band called Third Eye Blind. Stephen had already tried to record with House (Limbomaniacs). Stephen started Third Eye Blind in late '93/early '94 with himself (guitar,vocals), Arion Salazar(bass), Curveball(drums). Curve didnt work out and was replaced by Steve Bowman (ex-Counting Crows). After a few months he was replaced in 3EB by Mike Urbano. But Mike never really joined, leaving to do various session work (Cracker, Sheryl Crow). In 95' Jeff Gomes couldn't play in Curveball for a couple months and was filled in by Brain! Later Jeff quit Curveball to do MIRV full time and was replaced by Mike Urbano, making a triumphant return to the drums. In '96,just as Brain was joining Primus and 3EB was getting signed, Arion formed a band to make the soundtrack to Interstate '76, a CD-Rom game.They were called Bullmark and had Arion, Brain, Dave Shul (guitarist who has played in countless bands with Jay Lane and now plays with Curveball), Tom Coster(jazz keyboard super-guy, Santana). They recorded an hour of slamming funk music.Tragically,Mike Urbano has since left Curveball. WHEW! It's a technical distinction, but House never recorded for Stephen Jenkins (note tried above). House did a session for the producer (Ren) and engineer (David) who were recording his demo tape, both of whom were thoroughly screwed over by Jenkins when he became a rock god. They have recently won a legal settlement against him. 5. Freaky Executives is sort of a world beat/ funk band, like The Time goes Latin. They were signed to Warner Bros. but never released an album. Before that Jay Lane was the original drummer in the Uptones (1984) a Berkeley ska band that had an album on 415 Records that was called "KUSA." Jay Lane joined RatDog on April 22, 1995, with Bob Weir and Rob Wasserman. This was after he and Les recorded a Levi's commercial with Rob that was later added to Rob's "Trios" record as a bonus track in Europe. They once performed as a trio, "Three Guys Named Shmoe" at the Bammie (Bay Area Music) Awards in 1993. Les did a trio on that album with Rob and Chris Whitley. 6. It was during this period that popular Primus demo tape called Sausage was recorded. 7. Jay Lane was replaced by Scott Amendola (Jun 95), and the Charlie Hunter Trio became the Charlie Hunter Quartet with addition of Calder Spanier on alto (Nov 95), and later Dave Ellis quit the band and was replaced by Ken Brooks (Jan 96). 8. Bob Weir (of the Grateful Dead) and Rob Wasserman founded RatDog (initially billed as RatDog Revue) along with Jay Lane on April 22, 1995. 8.1. Dave Ellis was in Ratdog 11/9/96-12/2/99. 8.2. Matthew Kelly (from Kingfish) was in RatDog 4/22/95-9/6/98. 8.3. Dave McNabb was in RatDog 9/6/98-9/20/98. 8.4. Vince Welnick was in RatDog 9/1/95-12/12/95. 8.5. Chuck Berry's longtime pianist Johnnie Johnson was in RatDog 2/20/96-5/28/97. 8.6. Mookie Segal was in RatDog 12/10/96-4/15/97 8.8. For a period of about 5 years in the mid-80's, Tim "Herb" Alexander played with a group here in Arizona called Major Lingo. He played on four of their tapes, and I'm told that he still sits in on some of their shows occasionally. (Like this year's NYE show) I've yet to see him, at approx 15 of the Lingo shows I've attended. Apparently the band moved to Berkley at one point in their career, and then when they moved back to AZ, Herb stayed behind to join Primus. 8.9. They had five demo tapes, the first one in 1984 that was untitled, recorded on a 24-track. The other four were called "Sausage", "Primus Sucks" "Sucking Songs" and "Welcome to This World". I have never heard these tapes, but their existence is confirmed by a press release, written by David Lefkowitz's office, that was mysteriously included in my Suck On This Prawn Song LP. Turd Boy was the first band of the night at some shows at clubs around spring '90. It was basically Primus, but Trouz (their road manager) rapping. The only thing I recognized him rapping was a Public Enemy jam and a fragment of the Chili Peppers' Freaky Styley. It was kind of a joke, I can't imagine they ever recorded it. Turd Boy featured Les on drums, Trouz on vocals, Joe Johnson on guitar (from The Looters), Brian Kehoe on guitar, Damon from Fungo Mungo on Keys, and myself on bass. I think we only did 2 shows or so. Playlist included Holy Ghost by the Barkays and Slippery When Wet by The Commodores. 9. Limbomaniacs Broke up in mid-'92 and spawned M.I.R.V. and Giant Robot. Initially Limbomaniacs were Brain, M.I.R.V., House and a guy named Kelly Smith on vocals. Kelly Smith was only in the first version of the Limbomaniacs. He and Pete Scaturro were never in it together. There was never a Limbomaniacs that did not include Brain. Then Brain joined another world beat band called Big City. This included Pete Scaturro and Joe Gore among others. The band was around from 1984, but Brain joined in 1985 and Pete in 1986. They broke up in early 1987. The Limbos reformed with Pete in 1987. A guy named Greg Thompson played sax for a while before they broke up in 1992 they also used a percussion player named Adrian Isabel. Their one album "Stinky Grooves" on Relativity Records in 1990 was produced by Bill Laswell and featured appearances by Bootsy Collins (P-Funk), Maceo Parker (James Brown, P-Funk), and T-Bone from Trouble Funk. 9.5. The Limbomaniacs had a collection of "rent bands". As a showcase band, you can only play about once a month in any given city, so the idea was to have multiple bands that could play in SF and Berkeley to help keep food on the table and beer in the fridge. The bands were intended to be fun and were musically based on the influences of The Limbomaniacs, and we got off on exploiting our name as a way of turning people on to good music. Come to think of it, we earned a lot more musically than monetarily from doing these bands, because we really had to study what the music was all about in order to duplicate it. The down side was it took a fair amount of energy to do so, which would have been better spent actually being creative in our "real" band. But then again, we didn't want to get "real" jobs while waiting to become rock stars either. I should point out that the reason Pete Scaturro was not in on most of these bands was because he was becoming a fairly successfull writer and producer of television commercial music at the time, which he continues to do presently. Some of these "rent bands" were: Ted Zeppelin: All Nugent and Zeppelin covers. Curiously effective and a frightening demographic- bikers and bud drinkers. We really drove this one into the ground. As much as I liked Zeppelin, I still wince when I hear them now because of this band. Borgnine: Like you've noted, all 80's era Miles Davis- funky stuff. Caca: This one lasted the longest. Every year or two someone would get the bug up their butt to book a show, which usually turned into a nightmare. Frank's music is pretty demanding, and without fail about a week before the show we'd realize we didn't have the shit together! ("Ok, so how does that 19/16 part go?") Larry was a chief co-instigator of this band, due to a mutual obsession with Zappa. Curveball: The bands that were the most popular in The Bay Area in the late 80's were defined by the press as "Funk Thrash" because of the common influences of funk and hard rock. These bands included Primus, The Limbomaniacs, Fungo Mungo, and The Smoking Section (who never recorded a record but through which we met Adrian Isabell). Both Mr. Bungle and MCM and the Monster managed to distance themselves somewhat from the Funk Thrash moniker, but often played on the same bills with the other bands. Also, I should note that almost all of the clubs where all of this music happened have since bit the dust. These include most notably the legendary IBeam and Nightbreak on upper Haight and The Omni and The Berkeley Square in the East Bay. Anyways, I was often asked where the funk came from, or what records we listened to, etc. I wanted to do a hardcore funk band to show what the real thing was about (well, as best as we could deliver it). The idea was put into action by Brian Kehoe and myself. We told Curve he should sing, and made the retrospectively bizarre move of naming the band after him (He rapidly earned the nickname "Napoleon"). The band eventually veered into becoming a full time professional cover band playing weddings and corporate parties. Brain and I left to tour with the Limbos. Smiley and the Gay Boys: Current manager of Primus David Lefkowitz (aka Smiley) was also the Limbomanics manager. He coerced us into making a band with himself as the frontman, with the playlist centered around southern funk rock. We agreed, but we came up with the name and insisted on it over his protests. Members included Brain, Mirv, Pete Scaturro, Adrian Isabell, myself, and Smiley on guitar and lead vocals. Johnny Moon and the Lunatics: I had a hunch swing would come back around, but I miscalculated by about 4 years. The concept was jump jive with Kehoe as a kind of Sinatra meets Dice Clay at the front. Much sick humor. Vince Wallace and Terry Rodriquez are the real deal, they taught us The Shit. We had a great noir promo photo for this band taken by Mirv's brother who has also photographed the majority of Primus's album covers (I was in a blues band with Mirv's brother, Paul "Bosco" Haggard, from '82-83', a year or so before The Limbo's started jamming together). Mongrels x 10: Although this was not a cover band, it existed just prior to the reforming of The Limbomanics with Pete Scaturro on Keyboards and myself as the vocalist. Mongrels was the idea of Roberto Razon who was in Big City with Pete and Brain. It was a punk salsa band, and Roberto, who we called "The Emperor Bobo" wrote the material, a challenging hybrid of latin and african rhythms fused with punk. Members were Brain, Mirv, Bobo and Myself. 9.6. Other members of Big City included Robin Ballinger on bass, "Bobo" Razon on guitar and percussion, and Kathleen on vocals, later replaced by krista (?) Big City was part of the Bay Area world beat scene, which reached it's zenith around 1986, complete with BAM cover storys and gigs at The Greek Theatre. Like Funk Thrash, the World Beat bands were thought of as "a movement" in bay area music, and I think, were characterized by a high level of musicianship They included The Looters, Big City, Freaky Executives and Mapenzi. David Lefkowitz was actually a roadie for The Looters about a million years ago. I think I first saw Primus at a "world beat" show at The Farm (which actually was a farm collective, and smelled like it too!) 10. See the discography for more details. Caca was one of many cover bands they had. Ted Zeppelin was the most popular, all Ted Nugent and Led Zeppelin. It was Brain , M.I.R.V., House and a singer named Brad Gates. Another was a Miles Davis (of the 80s) cover band called Borgnine. It was all four Limbomaniacs plus Adrian Isabel and Ken Brooks. Another was Johnny Moon and the Lunatics, a jump swing 1940's style band. It was Brain, M.I.R.V, House, Bryan Kehoe on vocals, an older sax player named Vince Wallace, and a keyboard player named Terry. 11. Brain was in Praxis, with Buckethead and Bill Laswell for the album Metatro" in 1995, and in 1992 with Buckethead, Bootsy, Bernie Worrell (P-Funk) and Af (Jungle Brothers) for Transmutation. 12. MCM was around since 1987 with a different drummer. Brain joined around 1992. When the first MCM album was recorded, Collective Emotional Problems, and was released in 1993, Brain was drumming for them and was tracked on the album. As of their most recent album, Convertable Turtle, released in 1996 the members changed to: MCM/Miles - vocals, Gary - guitar, Butthouse/Tony - bass Louie - drums, and Disk - Turntables. 13. Jeff was in and still is in a band called Fungo Mungo who were signed to Island and released one album, Humungous in 1992. Members were: Damion Gallegos - vox/harmonica, Jeff Gomes - drums/percussion, Arion Salazar - bass, Miguel Fimbriez Johnson - guitar, and Damon Ramirez - Keyboards. Arion Salazar from Fungo Mungo is in a new band called Third Eye Blind (they might be big). Matt Winegar, original co-producer of Primus, was briefly in Fungo on bass before Arion. Matt later joined Monkey Rhythm, which featured Adam Gates (aka Bob C. Cock). The name changed to Spent Poets and they had a record on Geffen (1991). Monkey Rhythm (pre-Matt) was on 415 in 1985. Rhythm/Poets bassist Derek Greenberg (who appears on "Los Bastardos" with Adam, Matt, the Limbos and others) finished his Beanpole project with Ler and Adam last year. No release yet. Matt Winegar, an extremely talented singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer debuts his own band Slider in May. The drummer, Josh Freese, written up in last month's Modern Drummer mag, would connect this family tree to half of all bands. 14. There is some cool stuff coming out with Brain through Bill Laswell's labels. 15. As on Highball with the Devil, the credits also included Jay Lane (drums), Mark Haggard (guitars), Joe Gore (guitars) Charlie Hunter (guitars), Adam Gates (vocals), and Henry Rollins (vocals). Adam Gates had a band called Monkey Rhythm that included Derek Greenberg. They had an album on 415 Records in 1985. They turned into Spent Poets in 1990, got signed to Geffen and put out an album in 1991. The band then included Matt Winegar who coproduced the first two Primus records. Matt has a band called Slider whose first album comes out in May on A&M. Adam, Derek and Ler recorded an album as "Beanpole" still unreleased. 16. Skerik, saxophonus intenso and Frog Brigade devil, has a long colorful history in Seattle, and some in San Francisco. Some of his projects include: SadHappy, his grunge era sax/bass/drums project with drummer Evan Schiller and bassist Paul Hinklin. These guys rocked our pits for years, playing many all ages shows and always bringing a diverse crowd. They released three albums on Perisdope records, Depth Charge, Live Before We Were Dead (a live album released during what you could call a haitus), and The Good, The Bad, and The Scary. Skerik then went on to a few projects such as "Crack Sabbath," a mostly Sabbath cover band where he first showed off his guitar-solo-on-the-sax skills. These guys rocked weekly shows at clubs in Seattle. He also, as always, made appearances with many jazz combos and larger shows. He toured with Galactic, and then when not touring with them, still made surprise appearances. Skerik also became involved with Critters Buggin,'a Mike Chamberlain masterminded project. C.B. now has albums out, including "Bumpa." This guy is a Seattle music icon. His most recent project is called Pronga. Includes Wayne Horvitz and a few more Seattle's major musicians.