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Gary Wilson


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Hailing from Endicott, NY, Gary Wilson is an archetypal figure in the “outsider music” movement with other artists like The Shaggs and Jandek as its most notable members. Gary Wilson first came onto the scene in 1977 with “You Think You Really Know Me,” which he recorded alone in his parents’ basement. Using synthesizers and spinning disturbing tales of obsession with different women, Wilson’s record had no effect on the mainstream but its cold detachment and electro-funk aesthetic was a hit with the college radio stations. According to, this album was the one that made KAOS in Olympia, WA the independent music bastion that it is today. Wilson’s “hit” was 6.4= Makeout, a song about attempting to make out with a minor (she’s 16) which received much airplay on college radio stations around the country.

Wilson played live shows with a backing band entitled the Blind Dates. One of their gimmicks was to cover themselves in flour. Wilson would not show his face, preferring to wrap his head in gauze and wear sunglasses, a tradition that he continues now at his live shows. Wilson played with the Blind Dates until 1981, at which point Wilson went into self-imposed exile.

20 years later, in 2002, Motel Records re-released “You Think You Really Know Me” after gaining permission from Wilson, who was 50 and working in an adult bookstore while playing in a lounge act at Rancho Bernadino Lounge in California.


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