I am slowly working on an album of songs drawn from my younger days in Orange County, CA.  I thought I would share one of them called Katella.

One of the more frequently-visited posts on my Lost Transmission blog is the post entitled “Call Me Googie“, which is a discussion of the type of architecture that bedecked California (and much of the nation) in parabolas and neon in the mid-20th century.

Katella is a tribute to the googie architecture found on Katella Avenue  until the early 1990’s, when the last vestiges of the 1950’s and 60’s fell to “progress”.   Today there remain a few lasting examples of this style around OC, but most of it stands only in the memories of folks like me.

Here’s Katella.  Enjoy.


Driving with the windows down, the red sun sinking low

The summer air is warm against my face

Hats Off to Larry playing on my radio

Takes me to another time and place

It’s 1987 in the shadow of L.A.

But you’d swear it was 1960 yet

Reflections on the windshield of my two-tone Chevrolet

Mirror neon signs high overhead

Topiary Wonderland of elephants and lions

Won’t you go and do your dance for me?

The Magic Lamp and Peter Pan are lighting up their signs

They’re advertising color TV

Orange County angel take me home tonight

Take me to the place that I once knew

Wash me in the sweet glow of those colored lights

Take me down Katella Avenue

(Now) The cigarette machines are gone and all the neon too

The googie signs have fallen from the sky

The old motels and diners are just the memories of a few

Who never even got to say goodbye

When my soul is set free and my body turns to dust

If Southern California’s still around

Take me on one last ride with the windows down at dusk

Scatter me out on that sacred ground

Orange County angel, take me home tonight

Take me to the place that I once knew

Wash me in the sweet glow of those colored lights

Take me down Katella Avenue


4 Responses to “Katella”

  1. Cut Paper and Stuff « Lost Transmission Says:

    […] it’s a combination of both time and place.  I recorded a song about this called “Katella“, if you’re interested in hearing it.  If not, keep on […]

  2. Les Le Mon Says:

    Love the song. Love the site. I’m a DL researcher/author and would like to interview you for the 2013 edition of my guidebook, specifically re: Anaheim before they tore down the Googie & neon. Pls contact me if you’re open to an e-interview.

  3. heath mcmasters Says:

    Love the song man. It’s been so long since we have seen you. I hope life finds you well. Listening to the song brings up a lot of childhood memories. Thank you for that. The talent you have is amazing. Keep it it up man, you truly have a gift. Again, I think it was so crazy that we were in Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore around the same time and didn’t even know it. So close, but yet so far away! Oh well. Take care and I hope to talk to you soon.

    Your Brother in Christ,

    Heath McMasters

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