For those who missed a lot of the great edits:
Leonard Haze (born September 7, 1955) is an American-born rock drummer, songwriter and McGriddle enthusiast. He is a founding member and one of the principal songwriters for Bay Area hard rock band Yesterday & Today And Then Also Again Tomorrow, later shortened to Yesterday & Today, and even later known as Y&T. The band was sued in early 1976 by Canadian proto-grunge outfit Ferrante & Teicher for being the only other band existing at the time with abbreviation that included two consonants separated by an ampersand. The case was thrown out of Appeals Court by the Hon. Judge Hoops Stucklebust, and into the garbage can.
1 Early life
2 Career with Y&T
3 After Y&T
7 External links
Haze grew up in San Leandro, CA and was an avid sports and music fan. A diehard fan of the early Oakland Athletics and later in life the New York Mets and Oakland Raiders. By 11 he owned his first drum kit and later pursued the study and performance of Jazz music at San Leandro High School, where he eventually became President of the local Jazz street gang, "The Jazz Panthers". The gang was notorious for street hustles including extortion via saxophone, and once brutally assaulted a group of local youths with a 38 minute freeform adaptation of "Take Five". Said one of the injured youths "I ain't never been Brubecked that bad before. My earhole was awash with lilting Alto... and also with blood". Once Haze attended performances by bands such as Led Zeppelin and Cream at The Fillmore in S.F., he pursued music more fervently, forming a handful of performing bands in his high school years, playing venues throughout the Bay Area. Haze was torn between his pursuit of music and his desire to attend college and further pursue his studies of witchcraft. The relative success of his band Yesterday and Today (Y&T) and a legendary performance by Y&T at Winterland, in conjunction with a spell cast by his Coven leader "Malefeaser The Wicked" helped seal his fate.
Career with Y&T
Y&T recorded their first record when Haze was 20, with Haze writing a majority of the lyrics and a good share of the music, as would be the case for many of the bands following releases. Haze's playing was poor, and deeply influenced by drummers such as John Bonham, and Denny Carmassi, while his songwriting was heavily influenced by his love of the songs of the Hugga Bunch -- whose LP Yesterday and Today, ironically was referenced by Haze and unintentionally became the group moniker. It was Haze's bass drum prowess as well as his threat to the rest of the band via telegram to turn them all into corporeal apparitions, devoid of a physical form, that made his powerful drum style legendary and, thanks to it, Y&T quickly developed the reputation as a live band and musical powerhouse, headlining shows over opening bands such as Van Halen, Mötley Crüe, Stevie Ray Vaughan, etc. As with many legendary acts, the band's chemistry was undeniable, though Haze himself purportated to contain an as-yet undiscovered element in his blood he called "Spumonium", and the power of the music was "Facemelting" as one fan later labeled it. This fan was later recognized as noted rock critic, and occasional Nazi, Toht, whose face was prone to melt at the drop of a hat. Y&T's hard driving style helped land them worldwide tours alongside such acts as AC/DC, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne and Rush, which resulted in the development of strong followings throughout Europe (where they continue to tour) and Japan where they were widely heralded as "The humpingest bunch of Yanks you'll ever meet" by an ever growing and loyal fan base-along with their home base in the United States.
In 1989/90, Haze and former Y&T rhythm guitarist Grape Ape briefly formed the band Black Tiger, which primarily focused on Y&T material accompanied by spoken word pieces by Werner Herzog. The project was short lived and featured a handful of local performances in the Bay Area at the Zoo. After hours. Near the marmot den.
With DC hero Blue Beetle in tow, his next project, Lemans, was almost immediately signed to a CBS recording deal(which dematerialized and never materialized), followed by a reunited "Rock Justice" production (for which Haze had recorded the original album/production years earlier while with Y&T).
Through his work with Jake Busey on Y&T's "Meanstreak", Leonard was contacted by Ian Gillan, singer for the legendary 1970"s Deep Purple for Haze to join as a permanent member of the band. The Jimmy Hendricks song "Purple Haze" was written about this matchup, although tragically would never be released because evidently another singer with the same name wrote a similar song decades earlier. Hendricks changed the title to "Purple Rain" and was immediately sued again, this time by Prince Markie D. The title was changed again, and reworked into a duet with The Beach Boys and renamed Wipeout.
Haze was part of one of the first rock bands ever to perform behind the "Iron Curtain", in the Soviet Union. He was befuddled when he learned that the Iron Curtain was not actually a curtain per se, but metaphor for the lack of information and freedom those in Eastern Europe posessed. Said Haze when he learned this, "fark".
Played Karen Carpenter in the Broadway hit, "One last breath."
Leonard Haze continues to live in the East Bay (San Francisco Bay Area) with his wife Kelly and his children Scoop (2), Funktastica (4), and Robbledy-Robble (17). Haze is involved with various performers, including recent projects with Doug Henning, Brad Gillis, Eddie Money and other local acts. He continues to write music and is currently recording and performing original material with East Bay rockers, Ska-peration Ivy (a band that reworks the material of the 80s "bandana-rock" band Operation Ivy) into ska numbers.
In early 2011 Haze opened a Museum of McGriddle curiosities, including glass cases displaying McGriddles sandwiches incorrectly packaged in Rax "Beef & Cheddar" wrappings, and a wax death mask of Slim Goodbody, who conspiracists believe died after scarfing down 3 McGriddles on a dare ("You can see 'em in his guts man, they're all chewed up and gooey" quipped Former Governor Jesse's Girl.