Wednesday, July 27, 2011


A question that always comes up in any discussion about The Dizeazoes: "What kind of a name is The Dizeazoes?"

In the early days The Dizeazoes were a loosely formed fragment of a band with members drifting in and out for fun. After moving from Wheeler's parents' basement in St Louis, the band was practicing in Columbia, MO, where Larry Dardick was attending the University of Missouri. Eventually Paul Wheeler would move to Columbia and room with Dardick at a place known as The FUN House. While on a weekend trip to Columbia to test out a new guitarist a friend, Norbert Rosen, inspired the name of the band.

According to Wheeler:

"At this point The Dizeazoes were very much in the beginning stages. Larry played guitar, I had recently bought a bass, and Larry had taught me a few songs. We were trying to come up with band names, and we were trying to come up with more band members. An acquaintance had mentioned that he played some guitar, and I had immediately asked if he'd be interested in playing with Larry and I. So he, Dennis Rainey, Norbert Rosen, Jeff Rosen (no relation, who eventually became one of our lead singers), and I planned a trip up to Columbia, MO where Larry went to school. The idea was that Larry, Dennis and I would play together and see what happened. That didn't work out, but we did have a good time. Norbert Rosen had coined some phrases that had become popular amongst his friends, and one of them had been 'diseased'. If something was 'diseased', as I understood it, it was a reflection of the downward spin of modern society, but, on the other hand, it wasn't a completely negative comment, giving even the silliest pop trinket, or ridiculous action a certain cachet of cool. That's how I understood it. The wonderful thing about Norbert's use of phrases was that he rarely explained what he felt they meant. So, the five of us were hanging around together for this weekend and Larry and I had been bouncing possible names off each other, and hadn't come up with anything that we both liked. At one point, Norbert stated authoritatively that something was "diseased". I have no idea what it was, but, as I remember, I said, 'That's it, The Dizeazoes!', and Larry liked the name, too. It was the first name we were both excited about. The spelling came about partially through my inability to correctly spell 'disease', but I also felt, once I had looked up the proper spelling, that for our band name the 'Z's' would look better. So, Larry and I had the name before we actually had any other members in the band."

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