Friday, April 2, 2010

TVD's Record Store Day 2010 Label Showcase | Ardent Records, Music, and Studios | Lori Friday on Big Star

Super 400's Lori Friday on Big Star:

I wrote these thoughts a few days before Alex Chilton's passing...

Super 400
had just left Memphis after spending a wonderful time with Jody Stephens and John Fry. We wished Big Star well on their upcoming SXSW appearance, wished we could be there to hear them play. The news hit us the next night in Chicago. Super 400 had just gotten offstage and we all had texts waiting in our phones from friends at home, saying that Alex was gone. Here are my feelings about being lucky enough to have Big Star in my life:

I remember 21, hopeful and hungry to start a sensation in a rock and roll band of my own. I dreamed to be in step with the impossible feel and taste of my childhood heroes. Young writers have a habit of molting a conglomeration from the cool around them, this is true in all the arts I guess.

Our group of friends would gather in whomever's apartment was hosting snacks and smokes, and we'd spin records all night, absorbing the goodness of youth. At that age, you already have the Hendrix, Beatle, and Zeppelin benchmarks, and much of the lesser known stuff doesn't stick with you. When Big Star's '#1 Record' hit me for the first time, it was so true and right, I felt cool just listening to the sound. I have been hooked ever since.

There is a short list of artists that have achieved such a combination of swagger and tenderness. Their music has been the soundtrack to my adult life; these four musicians hold a claim to many of my cherished memories as a woman, a musician and a lover of sound.

Our band listens to the Big Star records constantly on the road. We've been turning people on to them for several years and in every state and country we visit. Last year we realized a long time dream of recording at Ardent in Memphis, where Big Star's records were made. The walls there do talk; you can visit this Mecca and find out for yourself.

I've heard people say that once they hear Big Star, they realize what an influence the band has had on much of music since, particularly in the past decade. It's fair to say that Big Star had a foothold in my brain's understanding of Rock and Roll, long before I was lucky enough to hear a note of #1 Record or Radio City.

Super 400 is a rock band from Troy, New York. Active since the mid 90’s the band has released 4 studio albums and one live set as of September 2009.

The band was formed by long time friends Kenny Hohman (guitar and vocals) and Joe Daley (drums) and played in various incarnations throughout New York City and Woodstock. The lineup would not be finalized until the addition of bassist Lori Friday in February 1996.

The band was signed to Island Records and released their self titled debut on July 13th 1998 on the Island/Trade 2 label. In December 1998 Seagram purchased Island Records and many of their lesser known bands including Super 400 were released from their roster.

Super 400 continued to play and record, self releasing Blast the Message (October 1st 2004), 'Live 05' (November 26th 2005), '3 And The Beast' (April 21st 2007) and 'Sweet Fist' (September 15th, 2009).

The band is a taper friendly band and encourages the recording and free trading of their live shows.

Everyone has an artistic point of reference. Enter to win Super 400's 'Sweet Fist' on vinyl by sharing your Big Star-inspired tale—your band's—or a band or performer who can cite Big Star as a unique influence. Please remember to leave a contact email address. The winner will be notified next Monday, 4/5/2010.

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