Friday, May 13, 2011

The Take - Tonight

A. Tonight

B. Four Dollar Date

THE TAKE (Austin, TX)
Tonight b/w Four Dollar Date
Take (0023), 1982

Growing up in Ft Worth, Greg Thelen started playing guitar in sixth grade after seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan. Taking only a few lessons, he quickly realized he had a knack for picking things up and started his first band called Apartment 5D with some neighborhood friends. They won a talent show and played school functions, but things eventually fizzled after a couple years.

Greg later moved to Austin to attend school at UT, studying sociology and psychology. He joined a prog rock band called Stranger who started playing the then-scarce Austin club circuit including the newly turned punk hot spot, Raul's. By 1981, he decided to take the music in a more new wave direction, so he made a demo recording of some new material he'd written to shop around. After posting an ad at Strait Music that he was looking for a singer and other musicians, he quickly recruited Clark Sykes on bass, David Weaver on drums and Robert Rasberry on lead vocals. Greg and David would provide the back-up vocals.

The Take primarily played at Club Foot thanks to the fact that Robert worked there running spot lights for touring bands. They'd occasionally venture out of town for gigs in Waco, Dallas and Houston as well. After about a year they decided to record two songs for a single. At the time, they shared a rehearsal space with a reggae band called Pressure. The room was an old concrete fur vault (appropriately coined The Vault) and that's where they recorded "Tonight" and "Four Dollar Date." The two songs became the band's sole output. 500 copies of the single were pressed but only around half of them were housed in self-made, foldover sleeves.

David started having health problems and had to leave the band. He was replaced by Kevin Pearson. Around the same time Clark was tired and also left the band, being replaced by Frank Raymond III. The band continued on for just a short while longer.

Another thing of note is that the band made a music video for the song "Four Dollar Date" but the one known copy of the tape has since been misplaced. Also, the Take single made the number three pick in the 1982 Austin Chronicle Music Poll.

"Tonight" was featured on 2013's Texas power pop compilation album, Radio Ready that was released on Cheap Rewards Records


  1. I am honored to have in my possession one of the 500 copies made of this record. And I'm even more honored to have known the amazing musicians (and all-round great guys) who made it. Some of my best memories are of dancing in front of the stage as this band played one great song after another. And what a great feeling that was! I mean, it was Austin in the early '80s, and if you were lucky enough to be there and be any part of the music scene, then you know what I'm talking about. It just doesn't get any better than that!!

  2. Wow, this brings back some great memories. The parties at Greg's house. Going with the band down to a show in San Antonio and then tacos afterwards. Great shows at Club Foot, Jalapeno Charlies and more. Fun times. Lost touch with Greg and Robert years ago. I don't think I've seen Greg since my wedding in 1988.

    Jerry H.

  3. I, too, have fond memories of seeing The Take play numerous shows in Austin during
    the early 80's. I remember the vault and Greg's parties. I used to live in Tanglewood North apartments where Robert Rasberry also lived. He had the first Sony walkman that I ever saw. I think it actually belonged to Dave. I feel old.

    I also remember these original songs: Cook For Me, Hopelessly Europa, Somnambulant (or Somnambulance), Cinco de Mayo, etc.

    Janet B. bizzj@twitter


    1. Thank you for this.....GT

    2. Thank you. This is sad news. I remember David as being a very sweet and talented guy, but I had no idea he had become accomplished in so many fields.

  5. Wow, I'm so glad to have stumbled upon this. I'm David's daughter, and have inherited so much unknown music from the early 80s in Austin. I grew up hearing about his days in the Take and at Club Foot, Rauls, etc. I'm a filmmaker and musician myself and have begun working on trying to do something good with this huge music archive. My dad did so much recording (probably on that very Walkman) at Club Foot and elsewhere. I'd love some advice or guidance as to where to start as I'm trying to figure out what these recordings are. I'm in the digitizing process now. Feel free to shoot me an email at: if you'd like to get in touch with me.