Hometown band makes good.
July 7, 2001 1:33 AM   Subscribe

Hometown band makes good. Albuquerque band The Shins release an album on Sub Pop. (I absolutely recommend their song New Slang, a sweet poppy ballad.) Maybe this is so exciting because it's not every day a bunch of kids you've seen a trillion times get to be ON THE CHARTS. What bands have come from your hometown and made it big? (more inside)
posted by sugarfish (60 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Here's where I get to bust out the "I went to high school with Green Day" line.

I went to high school with Green Day.
posted by toddshot at 1:38 AM on July 7, 2001

Last Day Parade is another local band that i just adore.

And who could forget The Eyeliners, raddest chick punk band EVER?

Socyermom is a label dedicated to promoting New Mexican bands.

(and no, i don't work for any of these guys. i think i'm just too damn excited. and i just heart "new slang.")
posted by sugarfish at 1:40 AM on July 7, 2001

i KNEW somebody would say greenday like right at the top.
posted by elle at 1:56 AM on July 7, 2001

I briefly knew this guy.
Tense. Knew a lot of dick jokes.
posted by dong_resin at 1:57 AM on July 7, 2001

Used to hang out after gigs chatting with Carl Bell, the guitarist from Fuel, back before they signed with Sony.
posted by RevGreg at 2:22 AM on July 7, 2001

gerald r. ford! no, wait... amway! no, wait...
posted by quonsar at 2:52 AM on July 7, 2001

I used to hang at this place called The Milkbar, in Jacksonville, Florida. These jerkoffs were the house band. I never bothered to introduce myself. Now, I'm poor, and they're rich. And we all live in L.A.

I'm fucking stupid.
posted by Optamystic at 3:56 AM on July 7, 2001

The Smithereens played my 8th grade dance.
posted by plinth at 5:20 AM on July 7, 2001

The Dave Matthews Band and Widespread Panic both played fraternity houses when I was in college. Being from VA, I've always been happy at the success of the Dave Matthews Band (even though I never really dug their music) because I saw too many good VA bands struggle in obscurity.
posted by trox at 6:08 AM on July 7, 2001

Indus Creed and a bunch of solo artists.
posted by riffola at 6:22 AM on July 7, 2001

billy joel graduated from my high school the year before i did. the guys in scatterbrain/ludichrist predated me by about 6 or 7 years.

but really hello i mean I WENT TO MY HIGH SCHOOL and so i don't think you need to care about anyone else who did, especially if those anyone elses are the people who wrote crap songs like 'captain jack' and 'we didn't start the motherfucking fire.'
posted by maura at 7:12 AM on July 7, 2001

I could mention my hometown boys who released two albums on Sub Pop and one on Sony before breaking up.

And I should mention that hometown girl (from the same circle of friends) who put out a hauntingly beautiful album. (Legal mp3 from record label here.)

But instead I'd like to mention this guy who we all knew years before he did the crazy things that put him in the news. Not a friend, but someone who lived in town for a few years and was on the fringes of the social circle (i.e. he shared a flat with a guy we knew and came to a few of our parties). He seemed strange back then and there was some incident where he was injured by an "accidental" discharge of a firearm.
posted by D.C. at 7:24 AM on July 7, 2001

I like the shins because they played in Greensboro.
posted by corpse at 7:25 AM on July 7, 2001

What bands have come from your hometown and made it big?

U2....'nuff said!
posted by tomcosgrave at 7:30 AM on July 7, 2001

bob seger went to the high school in the town i grew up, so did iggy pop. had a friend who knew ted nugets ex-wife. shit, everyone pretty much knows grand funk in these parts...ah, the ghosts of rock."The Milkbar, in Jacksonville" hey i was there 95-96' the milkbar was in fivecorners, yes? I lived in San Marco area.
posted by clavdivs at 8:11 AM on July 7, 2001

the toadies (wooo! go fort worth!). not the most prolific band (averaging an album every 6 or 7 years), but they do have a new one.
posted by sad_otter at 8:14 AM on July 7, 2001

Dee Schneider, formerly of Twisted Sister, went to my high school. It fileld me with awe to think I could have sat in the same classroom, read from the same books, eaten from the same cafeteria trays....
posted by skwm at 8:27 AM on July 7, 2001

I went to school with a couple of the Barenaked Ladies.
And for the record, they were as funny and friendly then as they seem to be now. Eddie Robertson was an absolute laugh riot in class.
In case you didn't know it, their real big publicity break was when a local politician had them banned from the city's New Year's Eve party 10 (or so) years ago because their name was considered politically incorrect. You couldn't BUY that sort of news coverage when it went public.
posted by Grum at 8:33 AM on July 7, 2001

the smashing pumpkins, tortoise, the aluminum group, not to mention some outstanding house acts...
posted by moz at 8:48 AM on July 7, 2001

My friends' band has a big gig tonight. An A&R exec from Epic Records is coming to check them out.
posted by Mick at 9:17 AM on July 7, 2001

REM. And a couple zillion others (e.g. B52s) but no others quite as big as Buck and Stipe and co. It's still an astonishingly active and fun music scene for such a little hole-in-the-wall town.
posted by jfuller at 9:43 AM on July 7, 2001

To add to Moz's comment: The Sea & Cake and of course the ultimate Chicago god, Jim O'Rourke
posted by smich at 9:46 AM on July 7, 2001

I went to school with a well-known porn star---does that count?
posted by patrickje at 10:10 AM on July 7, 2001

I had Abnormal Psych. with this guy.
posted by brittney at 10:27 AM on July 7, 2001

smich: yah, i have a bud who's way into the sea + cake, but i wasn't sure if they were a chicago act. if yo la tengo originated from chicago too, you know everyone here would feel compelled to move out here.
posted by moz at 10:32 AM on July 7, 2001

Yeah, this guy went to my high school.
posted by timothompson at 10:54 AM on July 7, 2001

My native area of NW London produced 4Hero and the rest of the Reinforced Records crew. The whole Broken Beat/NuJazz (dodgy french translation) thing is now boiling up in the same area, with some of the same suspects.

Quite Sane is a (formerly) London outfit that deserves a lot more success than they've had.
posted by pascal at 11:15 AM on July 7, 2001

Correct 4Hero link.
posted by pascal at 11:20 AM on July 7, 2001

oh my god, brittney. i have loved self FOREVER. i am entirely too jealous of you right now.

is he as cute as the press pictures make him look? :)
posted by sugarfish at 11:28 AM on July 7, 2001

I used to hang out with Bushwick Bill of the Geto Boys. We used to play Dungeons and Dragons and we always made him a "Dwarf" or an "Elf"... he had no say. :0)

Back in the late 80's I hung out and jammed (loaned out my equipment, and had to constantly beg for it back) with Spark 950 & Timbo King

Bumped into a lot of celebs at Manny's on 48th Street, does that count?
posted by EricBrooksDotCom at 11:33 AM on July 7, 2001

i was born and raised in northern new jersey.

too many to list... :P
posted by jcterminal at 12:18 PM on July 7, 2001

I'm good friends with these guys. You may be familiar with the lead singer, who went on to front Counting Crows
posted by culberjo at 1:06 PM on July 7, 2001

I used to deliver pizza with the drummer for dinosaur jr. in Amherst MA. then I moved to Seattle in 1990 and it was all over.
posted by jessamyn at 1:14 PM on July 7, 2001

Calexico is a Tucson band that is doing pretty well right now. I can remember when the guys from Machines of Loving Grace were in a synth cover band that would play at local high school dances (they were also in hs, so I guess it was ok for them to be doing Human League covers at the time).
posted by eckeric at 1:52 PM on July 7, 2001

Jesus built my hotrod. And don't forget Styx!
posted by thc at 2:11 PM on July 7, 2001

What bands have come from your hometown and made it big?

Hmmm, let's see.... That's probably an unfair question...

Jazz (as in the musical genre as well individual artists Louis Armstrong, Pete Fountain, Al Hirt, Harry Connick Jr, Jelly Roll Morton, Huey "Piano" Smith, Fats Domino, James Booker, and Professor Longhair), Irma Thomas, Mahalia Jackson, Buckwheat Zydeco, The Meters (and the Funky ones), The Neville Brothers, The Radiators, Dr. John, Better Than Ezra, Galactic, Rebirth Brass Band, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Snooks Eaglin, Cowboy Mouth, the Subdudes, Marcia Ball, Henry Butler, John Mooney & the Bluesiana, Smilin' Myron, The Iguanas.

And about 100 others that I have forgotten about. Yes, I was musically spoiled...
posted by fooljay at 6:57 PM on July 7, 2001

I grew up in Columbus, Ohio. The closest any band from Columbus ever came to making it big is The Toll, who released two albums on Geffen and then were never heard from again... in fact, I stopped hearing of them after the first album.
posted by kindall at 7:05 PM on July 7, 2001

Smashmouth's the only one I can think of. Greg Camp, their lead guitarist/songwriter, was in my high school class and the jazz band. I caught an episode of Before They Were Rock Stars a while back that had some party footage from one of his many high school bands and had a good time picking people out of the crowd.

I, however, was a confirmed wallflower at that point in my life and therefore lose any potential cool points, unlike those of you who have actually talked to or been friends with your local rock stars...
posted by raku at 7:13 PM on July 7, 2001

Pete Buck of REM fame was in my journalism class at Rosemont Junior High in never-mentioned-by-Buck La Crescenta, California. He had to move to Georgia after ninth grade and we all felt sorry for him. Georgia? Yuck!

About the only thing I remember about him is that he wore bluejeans and an american flag tie to graduation. I thought that was pretty edgy of him (La Crescenta is/was an intensely conservative middle class white suburb of Los Angeles.)
posted by drunkkeith at 8:00 PM on July 7, 2001 [1 favorite]

I went to school with the new lead guitarist of australian band You Am I, kept a friendship going with him after school finised, he joined the band after working on a website for them, which I help out with too... he joined the band, the website was made official now I run the band's mailing list. (end self-promotion)
posted by cheaily at 10:06 PM on July 7, 2001

lucky me, i'm from chicago, everyone i know is in a band. and i don't think any of my friends in bands have a desire to make it on the charts either.
posted by mikeyb at 10:23 PM on July 7, 2001

Haha -- I used to live in Tucson, and my friend's friend was dating the singer Machines of Loving Grace. One of my more clueless budies actually asked him if he was in Rage Against the Machine. A very silly moment that we still laugh about....

... where are they now?
posted by ph00dz at 10:42 PM on July 7, 2001

The drummer for Ani DiFranco (Darren Hahn) used to be in a hhhhhotttt Denver band named Lord Groovy and The Psychodelic Zombiez (They actually were very good). Anyhow, my band opened up for them a few times and our bass player was good friends with Darren. After the Zombiez broke up (or whatever happened to them) I caught a glimpse one morning of old Darren in an MTV video with the band Geggy Tah none of which is impressive at all. But what follows is. . .

My girlfriend of three years is an Ani freak. So, over Christmas we went back home (Denver) and on our last night went out to Rock Island with a bunch o' friends. Well who was in town for Christmas too? None other than Darren Hahn. And since I knew him (kinda), I went up and congratulated him on his success and talent, talked about some "old times" and then I said to Meaghan (my GF), "There's somebody I'd like you to meet."

'Cause she didn't believe that I actually knew him--or maybe I just felt self-important and wanted to show off.

"Meaghan meet Darren, the drummer for Ani."

To my girlfriend that night, I was very cool and very In The Know. Which was nice for a change.
posted by crasspastor at 11:14 PM on July 7, 2001

man, i'm a crazy difranco fan... i'd probably be all groupie-like too.
posted by lotsofno at 11:31 PM on July 7, 2001

One day, there were these kids. They had a good band. Then they kicked out the lead singer, started wearing masks (allegedly after stealing it from a Cleveland, OH band) , and adding redundant peripheral members. They are Slipknot. I live in Des Moines.
posted by Homeskillet Freshy Fresh at 12:16 AM on July 8, 2001

WELL, they get a contract or what...?
posted by clavdivs at 9:04 AM on July 8, 2001

I grew up in Columbus, Ohio. The closest any band from Columbus ever came to making it big is The Toll

Depends on how you define making it big. The New Bomb Turks formed in Columbus and put stuff out on Epitaph and Crypt. Scrawl put out great stuff on Rough Trade, Simple Machines, and Elektra.
posted by gluechunk at 10:18 AM on July 8, 2001

God & Texas also came out of Columbus, if I remember rightly. Not a lot about them out there, as far as I can find.
posted by jonathanbell at 10:43 AM on July 8, 2001

Never heard of any of those three, but then I probably wouldn't have heard of the Toll either if I hadn't been living in Columbus when they signed with Geffen. (I moved to Detroit in 1990.)
posted by kindall at 12:17 PM on July 8, 2001

Is Scrawl from Columbus? I'd say that's bonafide greatness. Columbus also gave us Roland Kirk, the Gibson Brothers and the Royal Crescent Mob. Also, OKra Records was in Cleveland, one of the great indie labels. Not a bad track record.
posted by rodii at 12:47 PM on July 8, 2001

sugarfish--Why yes, he is that cute. But better than that, he is a genuinely nice guy. Extremely modest and quite shy.
I can't pretend we were big buddies or anything, but he did photocopy his notes for me once. I still may have a copy somewhere :)
posted by brittney at 1:28 PM on July 8, 2001

I went to the same school as Lance from Brainy Farm went to, and then one time I bought a guitar pedal that someone claimed belonged to Todd from the Herders. Oh and not to namedrop, but I took guitar lessons from FRANK CARPENTER!

You guys are some of the shittiest name-dropping braggers I have ever seen.
posted by beefula at 3:49 PM on July 8, 2001

Speaking of Columbus, Ohio -- I saw Scrawl at comfest this year and they really seemed to be struggling musically, but maybe it was the venue (a small tent in the middle of a park).

Also, don't forget Watershed -- albeit, not the greatest band ever, but decent. Plus, the lead singer looks a lot like Sammy Hagar (not that it is a compliment or anything ...)
posted by aaronchristy at 6:18 PM on July 8, 2001

My cousin's band hit the big time a few years back. Seeing someone you know on MTV is very strange. Not as strange as it's been for him, though.
posted by Chief Typist at 8:35 PM on July 8, 2001

OK, you have out-cooled everyone else in this thread, Chief.
posted by kindall at 10:03 PM on July 8, 2001

Aaronchristy: Sammy has great hair, though, for what it's worth. I mean that sincerely.
posted by raysmj at 10:34 PM on July 8, 2001

I saw Scrawl at comfest this year and they really seemed to be struggling musically

how so? were they testing out a new drummer or were they still using the drumbeats? do you happen to have a recording of the song(s)?
posted by gluechunk at 12:41 AM on July 9, 2001

and speaking of columbus bands, Gaunt was also from there. jerry r.i.p.
posted by gluechunk at 12:43 AM on July 9, 2001

I saw Scrawl at comfest this year and they really seemed to be struggling musically

how so? were they testing out a new drummer or were they still using the drumbeats? do you happen to have a recording of the song(s)?

Their drummer is still out of the country, but they brought up a friend of their's to fill in for a few songs toward the end. (They used a keyboard for drumbeats during the rest of their performance) In all fairness to my comment about them "struggling", they seemed to be having difficulty getting their soundboard configured correctly, broken guitar strings, forgetting words -- all in all, somewhat unsteady. Their rendition of "Green Beer" (which they do a different version of every Comfest) was pretty tight. Sorry, I didn't record any of their songs.
posted by aaronchristy at 5:58 AM on July 9, 2001

I think Alanis Morissette is really the only 'major' artist to come out of Ottawa in recent years, although most of us who knew her do our best to forget that fact. She was not a sociable person in the time that I knew her. Pick up her earlier teeny-bopper albums for a good laugh.

As far as indie artists go, there's Tammy Raybould, who used to play piano at an always-open cafe downtown. She was always very sweet, and would do endless requests for the goths, punks, and random street kids who were in for the night, to avoid the cold.

And for what it's worth, Kim Stockwood is my aunt.
posted by Jairus at 8:27 AM on July 9, 2001

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