Oshkosh Musician and Music Promoter Remembered

March 30, 2005

It's 11 p.m. at the Reptile Palace bar, heavy metal is blaring from the jukebox and Tiffany Bolling, Dave Rause and Andy Lubahn are sitting at a small table talking about the memories they have of their friend Matt Golay, a popular local musician and manager who died early last month from a heart condition he didn't know he had. He was 30 years old.

The group is meeting to put the final touches on a benefit they organized in Golay's honor, but they can't help breaking into stories of "how they knew Matt."

"It didn't matter if it was a band from Toadsuckferry, Ark. or Oshkosh, Wis.; if he could help just one musician, he would," said Rause, who performed with Golay in a band called Mashed Potatoes and Davey. "That's how Matt was. His life was to help others."

Golay was an integral part of the Fox Valley music scene. Aside from performing he was the head of Tickle My Junk productions and managed several Oshkosh bands such as Jazz Orgy, Wandering Sons, Boxkar and Lubahn's band, Andy's Automatics.

"When he first started promoting us we would play shows for $50, so he obviously didn't promote us for money," Lubahn said. "He did it because he believed in us as a band. He knew that the Fox Valley was a hotbed for some good f***ing original music, and he did his best to get that word around."

For Lubahn, losing Golay wasn't just losing a great manager, but also a best friend. Golay was the first death 29-year-old Lubahn has ever had to deal with.

Bolling pulls a stack of photos from her purse. One is of Lubahn and Golay performing together; Lubahn is dressed as a woman and Golay as Willie Nelson. The group can't help but break into intense laughter.

"The sharp pains of knowing that he's dead have now turned into dull aches, and things are getting better," Lubahn said. "But I'm done mourning the guy, and now it's time to honor him."

The Matt Golay benefit will be April 10 at the Algoma Club at 107 Algoma Blvd. Area bands that Golay was affiliated with, including the Wandering Sons, Copper Box, Skeptic Vestry, The Great Garbanzos, A Skeptic Vestry and Andy's Automatics are scheduled to play at the event. Food and drinks will be served and there is a $5 cover charge.

Golay lived life like most musicians; with many live shows, late nights and no health or life insurance. When he died, his family was faced with paying the full cost of his funeral, which was estimated to be over $10,000.

Proceeds from the event will go toward Golay's family and his favorite charity, Music Cares.

"The Music Cares charity is one that helps musicians with insurance issues," Rause said. "It really reflects everything that Matt stood for."

Bolling starts to create a final list of items that may be sold in a silent auction at the benefit.

"We need something that says ‘Support Local Music,'" Bolling said. "Yeah, that would be something Matt would like."

As the clocks nears 2 a.m., the bartender calls last call, and the group closes up their meeting. The tone of has turned from generally happy to somewhat somber. Despite all the happy stories the group has told over their meeting, it's obvious in their faces that Golay, a man who helped shine a spotlight on the local music scene, is greatly missed.

"People say that you have to move on, and really sometimes it's like you have no f***ing choice," Lubahn said. "But I'll tell you what, since he died, every single show Andy's Automatics has played has been the best show of our lives."

Advance Titan - March 30th, 2005
by Laura May

Posted by Jeff Sanders