The Story ...
“Grand Forks Rocks” is in one sense, the story of small-town resourcefulness ... about our home town, Grand Forks, British Columbia, finding its place in the rapidly evolving popular music and entertainment culture of the 1950s and '60s. It’s also the story of our band, the Nocturnes, a small group of teenage aspiring musicians, within the context of that time and place. Our band coalesced rather quietly in 1962 without much fanfare or any formalities, but being the first Rock 'n' Roll band in town, we were soon embraced quite enthusiastically by our local audiences. Over the next four years, our group involved five different players and we played various venues, beyond Grand Forks, throughout the Kootenay-Boundary country, the South Okanagan and even Idaho and Washington State, until 1966. Although the Nocturnes ceased to exist after that time, some band members continued their musical activities with other groups.
A half century later, with memories rekindled by a 50th anniversary high school reunion, the Nocturnes momentarily resurfaced as a group of senior citizens reminiscing about the good old days. The “Grand Forks Rocks” story and booklet, no doubt a bit of nostalgic self-indulgence on our part, is a product of that experience. We are thankful for the involvement of other local musicians and friends who have also graciously contributed information or photos toward the development of this story. Most notably, these include Buckskin Pete Koftinoff, Lawrence Demosky, Alexander Lebedoff and Jim and Lillian Popoff, who have remained dedicated supporters and friends of the Nocturnes to this day.
But there is certainly much more to this story. Grand Forks has fostered a respectable number of other bands, talented musicians, song writers, sound recording engineers and guitar makers since the 1960s. And while some may be familiar and have been deservedly recognized for their talent or success, others have been less so, yet their unique musical experiences are no less worthy. We are hopeful that their stories will also eventually be told.
Alfred, Bernard, Jack and John
The Booklet ...
"Grand Forks Rocks" is designed as a magazine-style booklet, with 24 pages and dozens of vintage photographs. The booklets can be viewed at the Grand Forks public library, the downtown Visitor Centre (old Courthouse) and worldwide here online in a lower resolution web format. Web versions are best downloaded and viewed offline:
Link: - "Grand Forks Rocks" web preview" (Acrobat pdf - approx. 10 Mb)
SoundCloud Audio Tracks
A number of old audio tape recordings have been posted on SoundCloud to supplement the "Grand Forks Rocks" booklet. They can be played by clicking the SoundCloud links from within the online version of the booklet itself, although please note ... these links may not work in full screen browser view. You can also listen to a recent fairly authentic recreation of the original Nocturnes' instrumental style and sound by a former guitarist with the following link: