Monday, March 7, 2011

NRBQ Album-By-Album Thread: My Story

Before we dive in, I'd like to encourage everyone to contribute to the thread and share their story. I don't own every NRBQ record, never got to see them live in their heyday, and don't know all of the minutiae. So, I'm depending on you folks to help make this thread as great as it can be.

Unlike many other Album-By-Album Threads, I'd like to take a slower pace, so that everyone can actually dig out or buy the records and play them fresh before they have to chime in with their thoughts. Other than the freeway of their recorded output, there are many side streets and back roads to explore on the NRBQ path, so I'd like to leave the space to do some sightseeing along the way.

I was born in 1971 in Connecticut, and graduated high school in 1989. As a kid, I remember hearing what seemed like weekly radio spots on WHCN, WPLR, and WCCC for upcoming NRBQ shows. By the time I was old enough and musically smart enough to see NRBQ, their golden age had passed.

As a kid that grew up on and loved The Beatles, the first NRBQ song that really connected with me was the sweet pop single from 1989s "Wild Weekend" album. I got the excellent career retrospective from Rhino Records called "Peek-A-Boo," and while I loved it, it was enough for me for awhile.

As I got older, and had more of an understanding of musical styles and history I started to appreciate them more and more. After dedicating my life to studying jazz composer, keyboardist, and bandleader Sun Ra for a good 10 years, the name NRBQ kept popping up, and I finally took the time to really get in to NRBQ and their discography.

As a musician and fan from Connecticut, I am incredibly proud of NRBQ and Al Anderson. There are so few artists that made a name for themselves from this state that they are beacon for me. Even though Al Anderson originated from Windsor, CT, NRBQ weren't truly a CT band, but they played here so much in the 1970s and 80s, that it felt like they were.

I'd like to talk about the pre-NRBQ bands The Wildweeds and The Merseybeats U.S.A. before we hit NRBQs debut LP, but before we do that please share you personal NRBQ story.

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