For years I've been puzzled by the name Little Caesar and the Consuls given to the group that I once played drums with called The Consuls. Although the term, consuls, was originally used to denote two leaders of the Roman senate more than 2000 years ago, some time between political rule by the early Roman kings, and the rule of the emperors often called Caesar, I think I recall that our group's labeling itself "The Consuls" was actually inspired by a British automobile,the Consul.
Obviously I had nothing to do with applying that name to our band, and have always believed that Bruce Morshead had originated it. Some time after Robbie, Gene,and I left the "Consuls" the new group that formed around the two remaining "Consuls" became known as "Little Caesar and the Consuls". The new name inspiring a kind of imperial air, surprised me because I rightly or wrongly had always believed that the original name had more mechanical/commercial or even democratic associations than the more recent one evoking the image of the autocratic rulers of the Roman empire.
But what interests me about the change of name from The Consuls (whether derived from the Roman Consuls or a British auto) to Little Caesar and the Consuls is that it reminds me that in the early days of Rock and Roll the name "Consuls" seemed to suit an era in which differences between performers and audience were blurred compared to ensuing years of popular rock entertainment when the distance between the deified "rock star" and the masses seemed to grow as wide as between the Roman emperor and his subjects in the days of the Roman empire after Caesar had destroyed Italy's Republican Roman constitution. I've owned the photo of the early Consuls of which I was a part since the photo was taken. The one of Little Caesar and the Consuls was sent to me by Boyd Sarney when I started putting Toronto's Secret Online. After years of puzzling over why the name was changed and who "Little Caesar" was, I came to imagine that "Little Caesar" would likely be Norm the man between the two boats about to be slugged by Ken's and Tom's paddles and not Bruce who used to be leader of the Consuls, even though I now understand that Bruce was "Little Caesar" for a time because according to Tom Wilson, Bruce resembled Edward G. Robinson in a gangster film Little Caesar. But it was Norm fronting Little Caesar and The Consuls when I saw them perform in 2006, resembling neither Edward G., nor Bruce Morshead, the man he replaced and I'd always believed was The Consuls, the jovial pianist who named our group after a British automobile, The Consul.
My perplexity about the group "The Consuls" that I played drums in and the group that I was not a part of was hightened by that old "The Consuls" photo of me Bruce, Norm, Gene and Len superimposed on a recent record jacket of "Little Caesar and The Consuls"
And here's another version of The Consuls that originated after our 1959 dissolution with Ken upper left on guitar and Tommy lower right on bass. Only Norm on sax and Bruce at the piano remain from the 57-58 group; the drummer sitting atop the piano, sticks in hand, I don't recognize. The name, The Consuls, on this photo rather than Little Caesar and The Consuls confuses my interpretation of the boats and paddle photo and the name change.