A Cub Koda Story submitted by Dr.Tim

...I realized that Cub was a scholar as much as a rocker.

Hello folks,

My daughter just got a turntable so she could listen to that good old "scratchy sound". She is getting good on the mandolin, learning that good old sound, after a teenagerhood of modern music. I said, if you want to hear how rock-and-roll happened from country and rockabilly, you should get in touch with Cub Koda. She was all excited, having just acquired her first "antique" turntable, and I decided to do some research on the Net.

My heart was quickly broken when I found that Cub died in July 2000. You see, I was the "Dr. Tim" who built his 12-string, grandly engraved with his name on the fingerboard in abalone. I got it from a store in upstate New Hampshire in the late 80's, where Cub had brought it, saying it was unplayable. The store owner realized it just needed the tension rod cranked, and subsequently used it for two years for his own gigs. I lived just down the street from Cub in 1978 in Michigan, where his love, Jeanie, had her home on the beautiful pond there. I was working temporarily at a fine woodworking mill there, out of the back of a home-made camper. But my tools were all sharp and I was a blooming crazy guitar maker.
After a couple of months, I remember the day Cub came walking down the road in his black leathers and chains. He had this uniform and was spitting on audiences years before the style came in vogue. We got to talking, and I came up to his & Jeanie's place, and was astounded at the amount of wall space that was taken up by vintage rockabilly albums, plus their predecessors and follow-ons. We shared a joint, and for the afternoon, Cub pulled out one album after another, introducing me to the genesis of Rock and Roll. His hit "Smokin' in the Boys Room" was past its peak by then, but I realized that Cub was a scholar as much as a rocker. He was disappointed, but I was amazed. I had never seen so many records in one place. Cub lamented that he "circled on the edge of real fame" but couldn't break through to the center. I showed Cub a 12-string I had just finished, and he fell in love with it after playing it a while. The only thing was, he wanted a big "CUB KODA" inlaid on the fingerboard along with a marijuana leaf. In a few days I had made the additions, and he bought the guitar. I will never forget his standing in front of a full-length mirror holding the guitar in playing position, turning this way and that for different views. To Cub, there seemed to be something very important about having your name in pearl in big letters on the fingerboard. He seemed, well, satisfied with the image it gave him. We parted ways after that. I saw him play some great stuff in clubs in Ann Arbor, where he gave me a wave when he saw me. That is a treasure I will always live with. Ten years later, after I had moved to New Hampshire and started to bring up a family, a friend of mine said he saw a 12-string for sale in an upstate guitar store made by "Dr. Tim", with "CUB KODA"on the fingerboard. I flew up to the store, and found that Cub had come in to sell it because the action was too high. The owner saw that he could fix it with a turn of a wrench inside the body, but didn't let on. He bought the guitar from Cub, fixed the action, and then used it, when not displayed as his "high end 12-string", as his performance instrument. Playing in schools he had to crayon over the marijuana leaf on the first fret, but otherwise it served him well, and he sold it to me at a good price. I have it in my living room right now. Anybody interested?
Love to Jeanie, where ever she might be.

Dr. Tim
Tim White

(If you have a story about Cub, something funny, how you met, etc., please email them to: webmaster@cubkoda.com so that they can be added for others to enjoy!)