Nickel Revolution Salutes Greg Thomassen

Posted: October 29, 2011 in 1966

A better friend cannot be found. Greg Thomassen was part of The Nickel Revolution although he didn’t play a musical instrument—he was our favorite photographer and all-around good guy. Sadly we are still searching our treasure boxes for a photo of him! So much like a photographer to spend all his time on the backside of the camera, such was the case with Greg.  The Nickel Revolution “on the rocks” (L-R) Keith Luer, Jerry Lenz, Louie Lenz, Scott Jeffy and Ron “Honeybear” Hort. Photo by Greg Thomassen

Greg hand quite a string of nicknames, “Bobo,” and “Beebs” were two favorites, and teens around Robbinsdale, Golden Valley, and the northwestern Minneapolis suburbs knew Greg. You could often find him buzzing the Robbin’s Nest A&W in his gold 1965 Ford Mustang. That Mustang was a sweet, 289 three-speed. Greg knew cars and a favorite pastime with Greg was “tooling around.” That meant an evening of driving all over Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Greg knew every cool place to cruise and not just one Porkies drive-in, Beebs would take you to two or three Porkies. Tooling down lake street all the way to Saint Paul and then driving down the streets of the Minnesota State Fair grounds (always looked strange when the fair was not in progress).

 Greg would hang out with the band at practice and travel with the band to out of town gigs—remember, he loved to drive. He always had his camera and would catch us doing what bands do (well, not everything) and he was a great joy to have with us. 

                                                    Rehearsal at Red Wing High School Kent Saunders and Scott Jeffy

                                              Louie and Honeybear at rehearsal (Red Wing)

                                            Jerry Lenz contemplates his drums (Red Wing rehearsal)

                Jerry, Louie, Kent and Scott at the Red Wing rehearsal wearing our school clothes…suits for the show

            

                                                                      Louie, Bear, Scott’s back and Kent

                                                         Louie, Kent and Scott

                                                Louie Lenz at Red Wing Minnesota High School

                                                            Scott Jeffy at Red Wing Minnesota High School

                                                                Jerry Lenz at Red Wing Minnesota High School

We lost Greg early in life. He passed away in December of 1982 at the age of 34 due to a severe case of diabetes. 

The plan is to have other members of The Nickel Revolution share a story or favorite memory of our friend, Greg Thomassen. We will post those updates as they come in.  This first one is from Jerry Lenz:

 “Greg was everything a friend should be and he provided plenty of humor and wisdom as we tooled around. He was a friend of Louie’s first as they were in the same grade and attended elementary school through high school together. Through thick and thin, in the good times and the not so good times, Greg was always there. For a brief period of time after the band years, Greg and I were roommates and we sure had a lot of fun. I remember hours and hours as we explored the stupid Atari games together. Really lame by today’s standards, but it was all we had and we enjoyed it.

The last time I saw Greg was the morning of the day that he died. We had made plans for a get-together and I went over to his place in the morning. I remember him coming downstairs to greet me and I could tell he wasn’t feeling well. He sat in his favorite chair and wanted to reminisce. We talked about all sorts of things and then he asked me if I had any pictures of Chelsea and Nygel (my two oldest children). I did and he took the pictures and spent a long time staring at them. Shortly thereafter Greg said, “I really don’t feel well and I better go back to bed.” He walked back upstairs and I let myself out. Later that evening his roommate called to tell me that Greg had died. Losing a friend like Greg so young had an impact on me. I think it changes your outlook on life–learning to cherish and love friends each day you have with them.”

Celebrating The Nickel Revolution’s glory days with a salute to Greg Thomassen includes just a handful of the pictures he took of the band.

 

The Nickel at Glenwood Park: Jerry, Bear, Scott, Jeff Simon and Louie

                                                                     Glenwood Park Jerry, Bear, Louie, Jeff and Scott

The Nickel on Ron “Honeybear” Hort’s Olds Station wagon: Louie, Jeff, Bear, Scott and Jerry

UPDATE (Thanks to Teresa Lenz): We now have Greg Thomassen’s graduation photo from Robbinsdale High School, class of 1966.

We welcome your comments and feedback on this blog. You can post here and share this with your friends via Facebook and Twitter (see easy links). If you want to email us any questions or comments: NickelRevolution@gmail.com  

Listen to The Nickel Revolution now on You Tube

Link for Sweet, Sweet Lovin’: Sweet, Sweet Lovin’

Link for Treat Her Right: Treat Her Right

See these great websites for further insights to Twin Cities bands from the 50s, 60s, 70s:

http://www.jeanneandersen.net/musichighlights.html

http://minniepaulmusic.com/

© 2011 © 2012 Jerry Lenz, Lenz Entertainment Group All Rights Reserved

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