From Zeppelin Lane in Stockton to Orbison Court in Folsom, you could be living in someone’s rock ‘n’ roll fantasy.
Naming the streets in subdivisions is a task that falls to the developer, and as such, reflects their tastes and sensibilities. Many play it safe, going with the names of trees or state capitols. But the Sacramento area has its share of subdivisions with unusual naming schemes.
There’s the Garden of the Gods subdivision of Arden-Arcade, where streets are named for (mostly) Roman deities. Arden-Arcade and Carmichael at large feature an overarching theme of inventor street names.
In Davis, the Village Homes community recalls the literary works of J.R.R. Tolkien, with street names most reflective of “The Hobbit”, including Overhill, Shire, Bree and Rivendell lanes.
At least two subdivisions in the region, in Folsom and Stockton, carry a rock ‘n’ roll theme – mainly of the classic rock era.
The Stockton development is a small cluster of about nine streets named for bands and musicians including Van Halen, Orbison, Led Zeppelin, Ozzy Osbourne, and Jimi Hendrix.
The Folsom development is larger, with more than 50 streets. It is also much more obscure. Amid a scattering of more recognizable names like (Elvis) Costello, (Eric) Clapton and (Bonnie) Raitt, the bulk of the names would not immediately scream “Classic Rock!” to the average person.
Streets named (probably) for rockers Roger Hodgson, singer and keyboardist for Supertramp; John Illsley, Dire Straits bassist; Andy Newmark, drummer for Roxy Music, Sly & the Family stone and others would be less likely to ignite an immediate spark of recognition.
Slyly, Ringo Starr is (apparently) honored with Starkey, as in Richard Starkey, as in the name the Beatles drummer was given at birth.
Attempts to reach the developer who named the subdivision were unsuccessful Tuesday, but Jackson Griffith, a Lodi writer with strong ties to the Sacramento music scene, weighed in on some of the themes reflected in the rockin’ street names (as well as identifying the many obscure artists).
The unknown music lover behind the naming of the Folsom subdivision streets “seemed to have a thing for drummers, not to mention the sort of English semi-obscurities who were made fun of by Spinal Tap,” Griffith said in a message.
Some of the names had a local connection, he said.
“Ian Samwell, who produced the America hit ‘A Horse With No Name’ lived (and died) in Sacramento, and had worked with Brent Bourgeois (of the Sacramento band Bourgeois Tag) and some other locals on projects,” Griffith said. “Roger Hodgson (Supertramp) lived in Nevada City for a time, and his son had a pretty excellent band called Pocked for Corduroy.”
Mike Pinder of the Moody Blues lived or lives south of Grass Valley, and Todd Rundgren has ties Brent Bourgeois as well, he added.
Griffith, a longtime music writer at Pulse Magazine and the Sacramento News and Review, provided his expertise in identifying some of the musicians honored by the street names:
- Rod Argent, singer, keyboardist (the Zombies, Argent).
- Randy Bachman, singer, guitarist (the Guess Who, Bachman-Turner Overdrive).
- Bill Bruford, drummer (Yes, King Crimson). Jimmy Buffet (sic), singer-songwriter, bandleader (Jimmy Buffett and his Coral Reefer Band).
- John “Rabbit” Bundrick, keyboardist (Free, The Who, Bob Marley and the Wailers, et al., “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”).
- David Byrne, singer, bandleader (Talking Heads).
- Eric Clapton, guitarist, singer (John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, Yardbirds, Cream, Blind Faith, Derek & the Dominoes, Eric Clapton Band).
- Clarksville, destination in a song by the Monkees.
- Chris Copping, organist, pianist, bassist (Procul Harum).
- Elvis Costello, singer, songwriter, bandleader (Elvis Costello & the Attractions).
- David Coverdale, singer (Deep Purple, Whitesnake, Coverdale•Page).
- Papa John Creach, violinist (Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna, Jefferson Starship, Dinosaurs).
- Jim Croce, singer-songwriter (Jim Croce).
- Roger Daltrey, singer (The Who). Pete Farndon, bassist (the Pretenders).
- Mike Farrell, singer, guitarist in Sacramento bands (FMK, Leo Bootes and the Southside Shuffle, Sex 66, Daisy Spot, Persephone’s Bees, Th’ Losin Streaks, Whorelords).
- John Fogerty, singer, guitarist, bandleader (Creedence Clearwater Revival, Blue Ridge Rangers).
- Tom Fogerty, guitarist (Creedence Clearwater Revival).
- Keef Hartley, drummer, bandleader (the Keef Hartley Band).
- Roger Hodgson, singer, keyboardist (Supertramp).
- Bruce Hornsby, singer-songwriter, pianist, bandleader (Bruce Hornsby Band).
- John Illsley, bassist (Dire Straits).
- Lee Kerslake, drummer (Uriah Heep, Ozzy Osbourne).
- David Knopfler, rhythm guitarist (Dire Straits). Mark Knopfler, singer, guitarist, bandleader (Dire Straits).
- Derek “Lek” Leckenby, guitarist (Herman’s Hermits).
- Jerry Lordan, songwriter (wrote the instrumental hit “Apache”).
- Gerry Marsden, singer (Gerry and the Pacemakers).
- Andy Newmark, drummer (Roxy Music, Sly & the Family Stone, ABC, ET AL.).
- Alan Parsons, bandleader, recording engineer, record producer (Alan Parsons Project).
- Mike Pinder, singer, keyboardist (Moody Blues, Mike Pinder Band).
- Bonnie Raitt, singer, guitarist, bandleader (Bonnie Raitt).
- Andie Rathbone, drummer (Mansun). Dave Rowberry, keyboardist (the Animals).
- Todd Rundgren, singer, bandleader, record producer (Nazz, Todd Rundgren, Utopia).
- John Rutsey, drummer (Rush). Ian Samwell, singer-songwriter, record producer (America, et al.).
- Richard Starkey, aka Ringo Starr, drummer (the Beatles, Ringo Starr and his All-Starr Band).
- Bernie Taupin, lyricist (Elton John).
- Stan Tippins, singer, road manager (Doc Thomas Group, Shakedown Sound, Mott the Hoople).
- Peter Tork, bassist (the Monkees).
- Robin Trower, guitarist (Procul Harum, Robin Trower Band).
- Billy Vaughn, saxophonist (Billy Vaughn).
- Narada Michael Walden, drummer, multi-instrumentalist, record producer (Mahavishnu Orchestra,
- Jeff Beck, Tommy Bolin Band, et al.).
- Phil Walden, artist manager, record producer, founder of Capricorn Records (Otis Redding).
- John Weider, guitarist (Eric Burdon & the Animals).
- Pick Withers, drummer (Dire Straits).