Gotta Have a Leisure Suit

In the 70s, nothing was more anti-bohemian than the polyester leisure suit. It stood for all that was crass and square in modern, clueless, adult pop culture—  disco style replacing freakwear.

Leisure suits are now considered costumes but in 1978 they were worn in a serious way. Fashion ugliness had reached a zenith. By about 1980 they had lost their luster.

In 1980, when the barking Geckos were re-forming, I put a classified ad in the Lawrence Daily Journal World asking for the donation of unwanted leisure suits, needed as a performance prop for a song of mine, Leisure Suit.  Two women answered the ad. I obtained one exceedingly bright yellow number and one of a dull shade of green. Could not locate the Holy Grail color: lime green, the suit mentioned in the song. Dull, colorless green would have to do.

Button detail.

My son borrowed the bright yellow suit for his culturally upending dance performance with S. Hack at the South Junior High Variet Show circa 1996 or 97.

Here’s the only recorded version of the song from 1980 Barking Gecko performance at The Lawrence Opera House.

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