California Dreams

California Dreams

Synopsis of Saturday Morning Show

What’s hotter than teen “surf dudes with attitude” and the girls who love them? Nothing.

NBC and Peter Engel Productions, already partners on the teen sitcom Saved by the Bell, took advantage of that fact, putting a group of cuter-than-cute teens together in a pop/surf band called the California Dreams.

The band started in the basement of guitarist Matt Garrison, also the group’s lead singer. Matt’s sister Jenny played keyboards, ditzy blonde Tiffani Smith played bass, and the drummer was smooth-talking Antoine “Tony” Wicks. Matt’s next-door neighbor Sylvester “Sly” Winkle served as the band’s slimy manager.

The Dreams lived in Redondo Beach, California, attended Pacific Coast High, and hung out at Sharkey’s. Matt’s parents occasionally appeared during the show’s first season, but mostly disappeared (as did Jenny) during the second.

For the second season, bad boy biker Jake Sommers moved into town and joined the Dreams as a new lead guitarist, while foreign exchange student Samantha Woo replaced Jenny on keyboards. At the start of the third season, the Garrison moved to New York, leaving Matt out of the group. Sly’s nicer cousin Mark took over on keyboards and some lead vocals. Newcomer Lorena Costa was a spoiled rich girl who took Samantha in (she had been living with the Garrisons) and eventually joined the band.

The show managed to mix MTV, daytime soaps, and primetime sitcoms into a hybrid product that kids and teens ate up. Romances (in and out of the band) blossomed and faded with some regularity, and the Dreams continued to put out new songs. Though the singles the band recorded never cracked the Billboard charts, the show ran for five successful seasons on NBC and a few more on syndicated cable. Perhaps the affections of the show's swooning young viewers were best captured by the California Dreams theme:

“Don’t wake me up if I’m dreamin’…
Just let me lay here in the sun,
Until my dream is done.”

Release History

9/12/92 - 9/7/97 NBC

TV Sub Categories


TV Studio

Peter Engel Productions, NBC

Television Cast

Matt Garrison Brent Gore
Jenny Garrison Heidi Lenhart
Tiffani Smith Kelly Packard
Antoine 'Tony' Wicks William James Jones
Sylvester 'Sly' Winkle Michael Cade
Richard Garrison Michael Cutt
Melody Garrison Gail Ramsey
Dennis Garrison Ryan O'Neill
Jake Sommers Jay Anthony Franke
Samantha 'Sam' Wu Jennie Kwan
Mark Winkle Aaron Jackson
Lorena Costa Diana Uribe

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