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|Origin||Waukesha, Wisconsin, United States|
|Genres||Roots rock, heartland rock, alternative rock|
|Labels||F&A Slash, 429, Zoë, He & He, Megaforce/MRI|
|Past members||See Member Section for former members.|
BoDeans is an American rock band. Formed in Waukesha, Wisconsin, BoDeans came to prominence in the 1980s. The band's sound encompasses multiple rock genres, including roots rock,heartland rock, and alternative rock. The band's biggest hit to date is "Closer to Free", which was used as the theme song to the hit TV series Party of Five . The band has been described as "one of the most successful, and best known, bands to come out of the Milwaukee area". BoDeans is included in a permanent installation at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, Ohio.
Kurt Neumann and Sam Llanas met at Waukesha South High School in 1977. After discovering that they had similar music interests, they began writing songs together. Llanas entered college, but soon left after Neumann urged him to pursue music with him.At this time Neumann did not sing much, and considered himself to be primarily a drummer, while Llanas had little experience as a guitar player. However, the two decided to get serious about music and both began to sing and play guitar under the name Da BoDeans in 1980.
In April 1983, Da BoDeans began playing around Milwaukee's East Side music scene, with a hired drummer and bass player. The band practiced in the garage of Mark McCraw, a mutual friend who soon became their manager and provided financial support during the early years. The band lost its rhythm section later that year, but continued to perform live as a duo and used the recording studio at McCraw's university to record demos on which Llanas and Neumann played all the instruments. [ citation needed ]In 1984, drummer Guy Hoffman joined the band. The trio's first recorded song, "Sally", appeared on the first volume of the Milwaukee Sampler compilation released by Breezeway Records. To compensate for the lack of a bass player, Neumann modified his Fender Esquire with two additional pickups intended to capture solid low-end frequencies. After the trio became popular around Milwaukee, they decided to add bassist Bob Griffin in 1985.
Later in 1985, the quartet received interest from multiple major labels and chose to sign a contract with Slash/Warner Records. After signing, the label suggested that they shorten their name to simply BoDeans. Under the guidance of producer T Bone Burnett, they entered Hollywood's Sunset Sound Factory in October to record their first album. Burnett focused on capturing the band's natural sound without many additional overdubs. The band later expressed their regret of not being able to spend more time on the production, but high studio costs kept the sessions concise. Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams , the band's critically acclaimed debut album, was released in 1986.
In January 1987, a Rolling Stone reader poll voted BoDeans the Best New American Band.Early that year, they traveled to Los Angeles to work with producer Mike Campbell, but the sessions were shelved after disagreement arose over the album's sound. Campbell wished for the album to resemble Tom Petty's brand of 1960's rock. The band, however, felt that this style did not fit their music and instead wanted a state-of-the-art production. They went back to Wisconsin and accepted an offer from Talking Heads member Jerry Harrison to produce their second album and were given more freedom to experiment. Outside Looking In was released in October 1987 and featured a more modern 80's-rock sound than its roots-influenced predecessor. At the time, the band wished to break past the "roots" label with a state-of-the-art production, but in retrospect, they felt that the album was not able to capture the true essence of the band. The album's lead single, "Only Love", peaked at number 16 on the US Mainstream Rock charts. In support of the album, the band toured extensively with U2 on The Joshua Tree Tour. That year, the band also contributed to Robbie Robertson's debut solo album alongside U2 and Peter Gabriel.
In 1989, the band's third album, titled Home , was released. It was more reminiscent of their rootsy debut, but showed a diverse range of influences including Motown, U2-inspired arena rock, and heartland rock.[ citation needed ]
In 1991, in search of a different take on their music, the band began recording with David Z (producer and sideman of Prince) at Paisley Park Studios. The band released its fourth studio album, Black and White , that year. The album's electronic-influenced sound was a sharp departure from most of their previous efforts, with more emphasis on synthesizers, drum machines, and processed guitar tones. The album also explored darker and grander lyrical themes. Though not a single, the album's first track, "Good Things", achieved some success and became one of the band's best-known songs. The rebellious and political "Black, White, and Blood Red" was the only single released from the album; it did not perform well in comparison to the band's previous songs that made the charts.[ citation needed ]
After Black & White, the band decided to shift their focus to making the album that pleased them instead of searching for a hit. For their 1993 album Go Slow Down , the band reunited with T-Bone Burnett and took a more homemade approach, with Neumann playing many of the instruments himself. Unlike their previous album, Go Slow Down was more acoustic and marked their transition into 90s alternative rock.[ citation needed ]
The first song from the album, "Closer to Free", brought Bodeans to a much larger audience after it was selected as the theme song to the TV series Party of Five in 1994.(In 1999, the band would perform a cover of The Beatles' "I've Just Seen a Face" as the theme song for the show's short-lived spinoff, Time of Your Life .) Due to the newfound exposure, "Closer to Free" became the group's biggest pop hit, peaking at number 16 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 in 1996.
In 1995, Joe Dirt Car , a two-CD live set, was released. The album included live tracks recorded between 1989 and 1995, some of which were acoustic. In 1996, the band released Blend , produced by Greg Goldman. The single "Hurt By Love" achieved minor chart success, while the song "Hey Pretty Girl" was used in an episode of Dawson's Creek .[ citation needed ]
Around this time, the band became entangled in legal battles with longtime manager Mark McCraw, who had gone on strike stating that he was entitled to partial copyright ownership of the band's first two albums.
In 2001, the 17-song compilation The Best Of BoDeans—Slash and Burn was released on London/Slash/Rhino.[ citation needed ]
In 2003, the band was able to terminate their former management and sign with Rounder Records.The following year, the band released their seventh album, Resolution , on Rounder/Zoe. BoDeans released an album entitled Still on March 4, 2008.
The band's ninth studio album, Mr. Sad Clown , was released on April 6, 2010. Similar to their 1993 release, Neumann produced and played most of the instruments on the album in his home studio. Though critics lauded the album for its homemade approach, reviews were mixed due to the overall melancholy theme.The album features some of Neumann's most personal songwriting.
The band released its tenth studio album, titled Indigo Dreams, on July 26, 2011.
On August 10, 2011, Llanas failed to arrive in Colorado for BoDeans performances in Denver, Boulder, and Winter Park, CO. He sent a text message to several band and crew members on August 11, 2011 notifying them of his departure from the band. On August 18, Llanas officially left the band due to "differences of opinion" that had been "going on for years", according to Neumann. The band stated that it would continue without Llanas, with the band's guitar technician Jake Owen filling in.
The band's eleventh studio album, entitled American Made , was released on June 12, 2012. [ better source needed ] In November 2012, the band announced the upcoming release of "Amped Across America", a double live album recorded at several venues from the American Made tour.On March 26, the album's first single, "All The World", was released.
On October 3, 2014, Neumann announced the release of the band's 12th studio album, entitled I Can't Stop. [ better source needed ] The release benefited the Milwaukee County Historical Society, which opened a BoDeans exhibit the same day. The band also released BoDeans Original Ginger Brew, a beer made by Sprecher Brewery in celebration of the 30th anniversary of their debut album. On November 11, 2016, the band released a Christmas record, “The Night Divine”. On April 21, 2017, the band released Thirteen.On June 17, 2016, the band released the single "My Hometown" from their upcoming 13th studio album, which was entitled Thirteen.
On June 11, 2018, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Kurt Neumann's stepdaughter, Tessa Neumann, had accused former BoDeans member Sam Llanas of sexually abusing her from 2001 though 2007 while she was a minor.Earlier in 2018, on the band's Facebook page, Kurt Neumann had publicly accused Llanas of molesting his stepdaughter. Llanas denied the allegations, stating that he was "shocked and sickened to read about the tremendously terrible, untrue allegations of misconduct against me by the Neumanns." The band posted the June 11 article on the Bodeans Facebook page and commented as follows:
We’ve had an amazing outpouring of love and support in response to Monday’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article. Thanks so much to all who have reached out offering love and encouragement. While we’ve tried to keep the BoDeans page all about music and positivity and moving forward, we’ve made the difficult decision to post the story here because, unfortunately, it is part of BoDeans history. It is our deepest desire to close this chapter and move forward as soon as we can.
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The Mollusk is the sixth studio album by American rock band Ween, released by Elektra Records on June 24, 1997. It is a multi-genre concept album with a dark nautical theme, with most songs incorporating elements from psychedelia and/or sea shanties while also featuring a heavy progressive rock influence. Dean Ween described the album as "the only record that I ever felt really confident about" and "my favorite record we've ever done." Gene Ween has echoed the same sentiment, saying "The Mollusk is probably my favorite, at the end of the day."
Guy Hoffman is a drummer and vocalist, formerly of such bands as Oil Tasters, BoDeans, Violent Femmes and Absinthe. He is a composer for such films as Field Day and a founding member of Radio Romeo.
Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams is the debut studio album by American rock band BoDeans, released on 16 April 1986 on Slash/Warner Bros. The album was produced by T-Bone Burnett. The album title comes from the lyrics to the Rolling Stones song "Shattered." It reached number 115 on the Billboard 200 chart.
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Samuel J. Llanas is an American singer, acoustic guitarist, and songwriter in several rock and roots rock bands active from the 1980s to the 2000s, including BoDeans and Absinthe.
Blend is the BoDeans sixth studio album, and was released in 1996. It peaked at number 132 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Joe Dirt Car is a live two-CD album released in 1995 by the BoDeans. It was recorded in various places throughout Illinois, Wisconsin and California, among other places, between 1989 and 1994.
Resolution is the BoDeans' 7th full-length studio album. It was released on June 22, 2004 and was the first album of new material from the band in 8 years.
Mr. Sad Clown is a music album by the BoDeans, released on April 6, 2010. It peaked at number 172 on the Billboard 200 chart and number 26 on the Top Independent Albums chart.
Still is a full-length studio album by the BoDeans, released in 2008. It peaked at number 194 on the Billboard 200. It peaked at number 30 on the Top Independent Albums chart.
Kurt Robert Neumann is an American singer, guitarist, and songwriter. He is a co-founder of the roots-rock band BoDeans.
Outside Looking In is the BoDeans second studio album, and was released in 1987. It was produced by Jerry Harrison of The Talking Heads. It reached number 86 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Home is the BoDeans' third studio album, and was released in 1989. It peaked at number 94 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Black and White is the fourth studio album released by the rock band BoDeans. Released in 1991, the album peaked at number 105 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Go Slow Down is the BoDeans fifth studio album, and was released on October 12, 1993. It peaked at number 127 on the Billboard 200 chart.