Engine 88

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Engine 88
Origin San Francisco, California
Genres Rock, Indie, Alternative
Years active 1992–1998; 2006
Labels Shut Up & Drive Records, Caroline Records, Wingnut Records
Website Official Website
Members Tom Barnes
Damon Wood
Eric Knight
Dave Hawkins

Engine 88 was a rock band that spawned out of the San Francisco Bay Area in the 1990s.


Engine 88 (originally known as simply Engine) released three albums (2 on Caroline Records) and a handful of 7 inch singles throughout the 1990s. The band featured Tom Barnes of the notable college rock band Sordid Humor as lead singer, Damon Wood of Smoking Section on guitar, Eric Knight on bass and Dave Hawkins (also of Smoking Section) on the drums.

Their first two releases, two 7 inch singles, Funny Car and Twenty were put out independently on their own label, Shut Up and Drive in 1993 and 1994, respectively. In 1995, their first full length LP, Clean Your Room was released on Caroline Records, defining their characteristic sound of driving guitars and rhythms counter-acted with introspective and often abstract lyrics. 1997's Snowman followed, to much critical acclaim.

On July 2, 1997, Counting Crows kicked off a co-headlining tour with The Wallflowers that continued through September. This tour included opening acts by Bettie Serveert, Engine 88, Gigolo Aunts, and That Dog), with each opening band touring for a three-week stretch.[1] While touring with Counting Crows, The Wallflowers were also playing their own headlining dates when the Counting Crows tour was on break (Counting Crows frontman Adam Duritz experienced swollen vocal cords and had to back out of several shows in July).[2]

In 1998 the group disbanded and their final full-length, Flies and Death n' Stuff was released posthumously in 1998 on Wingnut Records.

Where are they now?[edit]

Singer Tom Barnes released a CD entitled Three Day Ditties, which abandoned the louder rock sound of Engine 88, in favor of a more soft rock sound similar to that of his former project, Sordid Humor. His songs have gained a cult following and have been covered live by the band Counting Crows.

Guitarist, Damon Wood, is now a Software Engineer at Pandora performing in a Pretenders tribute band, Message of Love, and in an R&B cover band, Curtis Bumpy, in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Bassist Eric Knight is coaching little kids' functional martial arts at Modern Combatives.

Engine 88 played a "reunion" show commemorating the release of Peter Ellenby's book, Every Day is Saturday at the Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco on Friday, Oct 27 2006.

Drummer, Dave Hawkins, opened a popular movie rental store, Lost Weekend Video, in San Francisco, with Christy Colcord who previously booked European tours for many US punk bands including Green Day and Adam Pfahler of Jawbreaker.

Band members[edit]


  • 1993 Funny Car 7": Shut Up and Drive Records
  • 1994 Germ's Choice 94 (compilation)
  • 1994 Twenty 7": No Life Records
  • 1995 Clean Your Room: Caroline Records
  • 1995 Robots are Real 7" (Split with American Sensei): Hep-Cat Records
  • 1996 7" Split with Sincola: Caroline Records
  • 1996 LIVE 105: 10 Year Anniversary (Compilation)
  • 1997 Snowman Caroline Records
  • 1997 Seconal (single) Caroline Records
  • 1997 Manclub (single) Caroline Records
  • 1998 Flies and Death n' Stuff Wingnut Records


External links[edit]