Flamingo at Jay's Longhorn

Photo by Steve Madore

Flamingo opened Jay’s Longhorn on June 1, 1977. Already veterans, the band started as Prodigy and performed at venues across Minnesota, including the Blitz Bar, which was located across the street from Jay’s Longhorn.

“We used to play together in a band called Prodigy and even back then, before Flamingo, we were doing original stuff,” said Robert Wilkinson.  “This scene was ready for something new to happen and when everything exploded like out in New York … it all coincided here, too.”

Wilkinson recalled hanging out at the Blitz Bar with members of the Suicide Commandos and Curt Almstead.

“I remember when we first started playing as Flamingo, it was Flamingo, Suicide Commandos, Curtis A and a band called Thumbs Up. And we actually started across the street from the  Longhorn at a place, a basement club and a strip club.  It was called the Blitz Bar.  …  And then Jay’s Longhorn opened and things moved across the street there and everything just kind of exploded and it was great.”

Flamingo put out a four-song EP in 1978 that included “Smart Girl,” “We Do What We Like,” “One More Night,” and “I Remember Romance.” After changing their name to the Flamin’ Oh’s, they put out a self-titled LP on Fat City Records in 1980, followed by “Oh!” in 1981. They released “Long Live the King” in 2005 and “Here and Now” in 2015. See the complete discography here and current gigs on the Flamin’ Oh’s website.

The video here is “I’m The Gun,” performed September 24, 2016, at Flamingo’s 40th anniversary celebration.

—Mark Engebretson

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