The roots of The Seatbelts start in the St. Linus Catholic School choir.

When he was in elementary school, Greg Upshur started singing in the choir and learning how to use his voice. Between his own love of music and his older siblings record collection, Upshur decided it was time to start a band around 1976. Along with his friend Sean Curran, Upshur placed an ad in the Detroit News looking for band mates, and the word of mouth that comes with musicians, led to the creation of The Seatbelts.

The Seatbelts started playing shows before the Bookie’s scene started, but found contacts and great shows outside of the venue – especially around the Ann Arbor scene with groups such as Destroy All Monsters and Sonic’s Rendezvous Band.

DAM, and former Stooges, guitarist Ron Asheton helped The Seatbelts produce some unreleased demos. The band did self-release a 7 inch single in 1982.

After seven years, following changes in the scene and life, The Seatbelts called it quits around 1983. But, the band reformed in 2010 and has been playing regularly since then, finding new fans overseas thanks to social media and you tube. The Seatbelts were also featured on the Motor City Muscle Festival compilation in 2018.

Current and former members of The Seatbelts have also been part of several other bands in the Bookie’s scene include Flirt, R.U.R., Crayon Killers, The 3-D Invisibles, The Cubes and The Sillies.

More about The Seatbelts can be found at facebook.com/seatbeltsdetroit

 

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4 thoughts on “The Seatbelts

  1. As Greg said,we were music students at U of M in Dearborn. We wanted to start a band, I didn’t even remember a paid ad, I just remember making a flyer that mentioned Patti Smith, and one guy that called me about that ad was Mike Murphy, which led to a lifelong music-based friendship, and several other bands like the Sneaky Haircuts and the Hysteric Narcotics, but he never joined the Seatbelts. I think there were a couple early rehearsals , and there was a lady named Ann Posmuga who was also a conceptual member like me, but none of that turned into the real band. I already knew a guy named Bob Mulrooney in Livonia, about five years older than us, he had a band called the Deviates that I told Greg about and we used to go and see them at some little bar on Ford road. They had Lee Turner and John Watts on guitar (Skid Marx also mentions those two being in Medusa), Artie Wolf on bass and of course Mulrooney on drums. That’s how Lee Turner became recruited into the Seatbelts, the first real band, as opposed to the conceptual one with Ann and I. Rick Mills later joined on guitar while Lee was still in the band, I also recall a Canadian guy on bass ,Rob Swan. I seem to also recall Gaetano as an early guitar player in that band.

  2. As Greg said, we were music students at U of M in Dearborn. Bored indeed! I don’t remember the paid ad, I just remember making a flyer that mentioned Patti Smith and putting it up in music stores. One guy that answered was Mike Murphy, which led to a lifelong musical friendship and several bands with me, including the Sneaky Haircuts and the Hysteric Narcotics, but he never joined the Seatbelts. I already had met Bob Mulrooney, who was about five years older, and Greg and I used to go and listen to his band, the Deviates, at a little bar on Ford Road. The Deviates had Lee Tuner and John Watts on guitars (also both in Medusa with Skid Marx, see the Flirt interviews) a guy named Artie Wolf on bass and of course Mulrooney on drums. That was how Lee Turner was recruited and it became a real band. The conceptual band was just Greg and I and a lady named Ann Posmuga. Rick Mills later joined while Lee was still involved and for a long time they had a Canadian bass player named Rob Swan. If memory serves, the earliest second guitar player was Gaetano, who also played in Flirt. Wally Solovey was the manager/friend of Greg, and later turned up as a really good blues harp player.

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