Brownsville Station (band)

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Brownsville Station
Brownsville Station, Charlotte, North Carolina, 1972
Background information
Origin Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States
Genres Rock, hard rock
Years active 1969–1979, 2012–present
Labels Warner Bros. Records, Palladium Records, Big Tree, Wounded Bird, Private Stock, Epic, Rhino, Atlantic
Past members Cub Koda
Mike Lutz
T.J. Cronley
Tony Driggins
Henry "H-Bomb" Weck
Bruce Nazarian
Andy Patalan

Brownsville Station is an American rock band from Michigan that was popular in the 1970s. Original members included Cub Koda (guitarist/vocalist), Mike Lutz (guitarist/vocalist), T.J. Cronley (drummer), and Tony Driggins (bassist/vocals). Later members included Henry "H-Bomb" Weck (drummer) and Bruce Nazarian (guitarist/vocalist).

They are remembered for the top-10 hit single "Smokin' in the Boys Room" (1973).


Early history[edit]

Brownsville Station was formed in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1969. Brownsville Station's early albums included song covers from bands which had inspired them.[1] In 1970, they released their debut studio album, No BS, on a Warners Bros. label. Their biggest hit, "Smokin' In the Boys Room", written by Michael Lutz & Cub Koda, from their 1973 album Yeah!, reached No. 3 on U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and No. 27 in the UK Singles Chart. The track sold over two million copies and was awarded a gold disc status by the RIAA on 15 January 1974.[2]

Later history[edit]

In 1977, Brownsville Station recorded "Martian Boogie", one of their seven singles to chart on the Hot 100.[3] The song was also a feature on Dr. Demento's radio show. "(Lady) Put The Light On", their penultimate single, also charted in the Hot 100, at 46.

After drummer Cronley left the band, Van Wert, Ohio native Henry "H-Bomb" Weck was called on to fill the position left by Cronley.

The band's second-highest Billboard charting single was "Kings of the Party" which topped out at No. 31 in 1974.

Original members of Brownsville Station disbanded in 1979 and their final studio album together, Air Special, was released by Epic in 1978.

Lee Centracchio from Stubenville, Ohio played bass briefly with the band before leaving to join the Army.

Koda died of kidney disease on 1 July 2000 at the age of 51.

Lutz went on to produce many bands, including Ted Nugent's Spirit of the Wild album, and toured in the 1990s with Nugent. Lutz still resides in Ann Arbor, teaches guitar and bass at a local music store called Oz's Music, writes and produces many acts.

While still in Brownsville Station, Weck engineered and co-produced the Strikes album for Blackfoot, and then two more albums stateside as well as a live Blackfoot album with the Rolling Stones mobile in the UK. Weck continues to record and produce in Memphis, in Ann Arbor at Lutz's Tazmania Studios and is the co-driving force of the re-united Brownsville Station.[4]

After Cronley left Brownsville Station, he spent a career in the U.S. Marine Corps as a Marine Aviator, and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1992. He is currently a pilot for FedEx and resides in Yuma, Arizona. He is also an artist.[5]

Bruce Nazarian continued on to produce, engineer and perform with his band "The Automatix", who released their debut LP on MCA in 1983. He was the CEO of Digital Media Consulting Group and ran a popular digital media website "". Nazarian also produced and hosted The Digital Guy radio show in addition to being a music producer, concert impresario and artist manager. His last band, "The Brotherhood" is slated to release their debut CD "(It's) All About The Groove" in early 2016. Nazarian died in October 2015.

Brownsville Station is Still Smokin' (2012 and beyond)[edit]

Through the band’s early days Weck captured over 500 hours of Brownsville demos, rehearsals, live shows and even some special events. In 2012, Lutz and Weck began sorting through the recordings in Lutz’s Tazmania Studio. The creative juices, always at the heart of Brownsville Station, were flowing and the result is the 13 tracks (12 brand new songs and the updated version of the band’s classic “Smokin’ In The Boys Room”) on Still Smokin’ (2012).

Augmented by new players Billy Craig, Arlen Viecelli and Brad Johnson, Brownsville Station returned to the road in 2013.


Brownsville Station's early influences included Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and other 1950s rock and roll musicians. Koda's onstage antics influenced many rockers including Peter Wolf and Alice Cooper.[1]

Band members[edit]

  • Mike Lutz (1969-1979, 2012-Current) - guitar, vocals, bass, keyboards
  • Henry "H Bomb" Weck (1972-1979, 2012-Current) - drums, vocals
  • Billy Craig (2012-Current) - guitar, vocals
  • Arlen Viecelli (2013-Current) - guitar, vocals
  • Brad Johnson (2013-Current) - bass, vocals

Former members[edit]

  • Cub Koda (1969–1979) - guitar, vocals
  • T.J. Cronley (1969–1971) - drums
  • Tony Driggins (1969–1972) - bass, vocals
  • Bruce Nazarian (1975–1979) - guitar, vocals, keyboards, bass
  • Andy Patalan (2012-2013) - guitar, vocals
  • Lee Centracchio (1979) - bass



Year Album US Top 200
1970 No BS
1972 A Night On The Town 191
1973 Yeah! 98
1974 School Punks 170
1975 Motor City Connection
1977 Brownsville Station
1978 Air Special
2012 Still Smokin'


  • 1993: Smokin' In the Boys Room: The Best of Brownsville Station
  • 2003: Smokin' In the Boys Room and Other Hits
  • 2005: Smokin' In the Boys Room
  • 2006: Rhino Hi-Five: Brownsville Station


Year Single US Cashbox[6] US Hot 100[7] UK Singles[8]
1969 "Rock & Roll Holiday"
1970 "Be-Bop Confidential"
1971 "Roadrunner"
"That's Fine"
1972 "The Red Back Spider" 85 96
1973 "Let Your Yeah Be Yeah" 60 57
"Smokin' in the Boys Room" 2 3 27
1974 "I'm The Leader Of The Gang" 26 48
"Kings Of The Party" 31 31
"I Got It Bad For You"
1977 "Lady (Put The Light On Me)" 44 46
"The Martian Boogie" 45 59
1979 "Love Stealer"


  1. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen. "Brownsville Station", Retrieved 19 August 2009.
  2. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 325. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  3. ^ "Brownsville Station Songs: Top Songs / Chart Singles Discography". Retrieved 2013-03-24. 
  4. ^ Yvon Serre. "Official site". Henry Weck. Retrieved 2015-08-26. 
  5. ^ "Artist/pilot soars with aviation themes | soars, aviation, themes". YumaSun. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  6. ^ [1][dead link]
  7. ^ "Archive". Billboard. Retrieved 2015-08-26. 
  8. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 83. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]