Friday, March 8, 2013

Casual Friday #11: The Three O'Clock

Working to look sharp for a rare evening out on the town can actually be easy. The tough job is trying to look sharp on a daily, casual basis. Yeah, you might have your Friday night suit at your beck and call, but what does it matter if you spend the rest of your time in target t-shirts and jeans? Every Friday, I'd like to offer up some style inspiration for tightening up your casual look, because let's face it... sometimes you just don't feel like wearing a tie, but still want to keep it sharp.

Many of you around the internet world probably heard a collective cheer around a week or so ago when it was announced that 80's Paisley Underground band, The Three O'Clock were reuniting for a few shows around California. Well, if there's one thing I've learned, California (especially southern CA) really, and I mean really, loves its '80s!

But, hey, when it comes to the Three O'Clock, I'm right there with them! I remember purchasing my copy of Baroque Hoedown back in high school and digging on their neo-psychedelic sounds. It was a switch from the punchy punk of other late '70s/early '80s Mod bands I was into at the time.

And as I sat there in my bedroom, groovin' out to Cantaloupe Girlfriend and their cover of the Easybeat's Sorry (which I didn't know was a cover at the time), I used to take mental notes on their casual fashion choices. 
(L. to R.) Michael Quercio, Gregg Gutierrez, Mickey Mariano, and Danny Benair (Thanks Karen Finlay!) Image taken from the Sweet Rhythms blog.
Right off the bat, I can tell you it was Michael Quercio's look that had the biggest impact, in terms of casual style. (Granted, it did take me a few years to catch up to that type of style. I was still wearing a flight jacket when I bought this EP, after all). But I thought he had the smoothest, casual look going on here: pointed boots, slim-fitting narrow trousers, striped sweater/shirt, and that nice corduroy (I think) jacket (Levis or Lees?). Top it off with the '60s shag cut and you have the casual look I'd end up adopting a few years later.

The other look in this image I was really taken with was Danny Benair's earth-toned paisley look. Again, it took me a few years to catch up, but by my sophomore year in college, this was how I dressed walking to school. In high school, though, all I did was study that outfit: colorful, narrow trousers, paisley long-sleeved shirt, dark suit jacket, with, again, pointed shoes. A look that was casual, but dressy at the same time.

I only took a few ideas from Greg Gutierrez's look in the back... after all, I wasn't much of a sneakers guy, even in high school. But those striped trousers, with the wide belt, and that paisley scarf were incredible! Maybe a bit too daring of a look in my 16/17-year old mind, but something I'd gravitate to later on.

Unfortunately, Mickey Mariano's look is a tad too morbid for me to really comment on... but if I was 16/17-years old, I would have loved it! I still had a thing for black back then. Not in any sort of gothic/new wave sense, but just because my frame of mind was still trapped in a 2-Tone, Reservoir Mod way of thinking toward clothing!

One of the main things I took away from this whole cover was that there were people in the mid-'80s who did dress super cool! Unlike many of the revival-ish bands I was into at the time, these guys not only sounded a little different, but they also had an interesting look going on, all of it casual. No target t-shirts, Fred Perrys, or badges up and down a suit jacket. Just a mellow, relaxed look that still came off sharp.

Then the 1980s caught up with them:
But that's okay. The 1980s caught up with everyone!
But however they're dressed for the reunion show, I don't care! So long as I get to hear them rockin' out to this:



  1. Great band. Great look. Great post.

  2. This may be my fave post of yours... but hey, I am SO biased it's not even funny.

  3. And psssst... I think Mickey Mariana's look was way more Beatnik than Goth!

    1. Okay, that just goes to show how much age changes a person. You're totally right! In fact, back when I was a teen, Beatnik is totally what I would have though about Mariano's look.

      Now, after all these years, all-black ensembles just makes me thing of goths. So sad...

      I need to catch up on my beatnik history again to set my mind right.

  4. I see they are playing Cochella.

    BTW I still want to know why everyone is so dismissive of Blur and Stone Roses???

    1. Yup, the big news was Coachella which eventually led to other shows in Pomona and San Francisco. We're catching the SF one!

      Oh man... don't get me started about Blur or the Stone Roses! Actually, honestly, I don't really know much about the Roses. I get them confused with Happy Mondays all the time. I just don't follow that style of music. And Blur... I just can't get into that whiney sound. I was never much of a britpop guy to begin with, though. Only bands from that period that I dug were Kula Shaker, Cornership,and Supergrass. I think Cast had a pretty good song at the time too.