Playingcard Motorbike

Nominee at the 10th annual LA Music Awards

Playingcard Motor Bike has been nominated for a Los Angeles Music Awards as “best new rock artist of the year.” The band, which features Costa Mesa residents Keith Berger and Brian Cline, among its five members, formed around five years ago. It has played the Coach House, the Roxy and the Whiskey. Playingcard Motor Bike is currently in the recording studio, laying down tracks for a new compact disc. The awards, hosted by Kari Wuhrer, takes place 6 p.m. Nov. 21 in the International Ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel, 9876 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills.

November 18, 2000

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Keith Berger still has the napkins on which he wrote the lyrics to the

songs he performed with Playingcard Motorbike at the band’s first show.

The 34-year-old Costa Mesa resident was nervous that night, stepping up

to the open mike at a local club.

That nervousness will probably be tenfold on Tuesday, right before the

announcer at the 10th annual L.A. Music Awards opens the envelope

containing the winner’s name for the best new rock artist of the year

award. Playingcard Motorbike is one of eight bands nominated.

The road there has been five years in the making. In 1995, an ad in

the Recycler brought together Keith and guitarist Brian Cline outside

what is now Cafe Ruba in Costa Mesa.

Both men had grown up in Huntington Beach, went to high school there

and wanted more than anything to have a working band. A connection was


Brian, 29, moved from San Clemente to Costa Mesa to pursue his music


“San Clemente’s more of a sleepy town with Marines,” said the engineer

for Motorola. “Costa Mesa seems to have more tattooed, freaky types with

guitars in their hands.”

The band, which has played at the Whiskey A Go Go and the Coach House,

went through a number of twists and turns before landing in its current

configuration. In addition to Keith and Brian, there is guitarist Chris

Corbett, bassist Jeff Redecker and, the newest member, drummer Pauli del

Baccio, who has been with the band for eight months.

Playingcard Motorbike’s name comes from a lyric in their song,

“Beautiful,” which refers to the playing cards children attach to their


The band performs mostly original tunes — Brian and Keith only

remember doing two cover songs.

“It’s not new or groundbreaking music, but I think it’s good quality

music,” Keith said. “We’re a basic rock band with good, basic songs.”

Brian said one review referred to their music as “a ’70s groove with a

’90s world rhythm.”

Playingcard Motorbike is now laying down tracks for a compact disc,

the band’s second, at a recording studio in Stanton. Between working and

playing music, time is precious for these five guys.

“One thing I hear at work is ‘I’m so tired,”‘ said Keith, a mail

carrier in Laguna Beach. “I think, ‘You’ve no idea.’ I’ve had only four

or five hours’ sleep for days on end.”

Even when the band is not meeting to jam, individual members are

working on music-related business.

“We try to have everyone doing a job that benefits the band as a

whole,” Brian said.

To that end, Brian designs the Web site; Chris, who raises money for