Influenced heavily by The Smithereens, The Replacements and R.E.M., Arizona mainstays Gin Blossoms became one of the biggest bands of the early and mid-90's. Single after single from their major label debut New Miserable Experience -- "Hey Jealousy," "Found Out About You," "Until I Fall Away" and more -- caught fire on MTV as well as on pop, alternative and college radio. Now recognized as a modern power-pop classic, the record eventually sold over five million copies and spent a remarkable three years on the charts. The quintet found additional success with their follow-up LP, 1996's Congratulations I'm Sorry, and hits like "Follow You Down" and "Til I Hear It From You." In 2017, both full-lengths were finally pressed to vinyl for the first time, in honor of former album's 25th anniversary. Today, Gin Blossoms lead vocalist Robin Wilson talks about working at record stores through the 80's, his obsession with Urge Overkill, fronting his childhood heroes Kiss on Letterman, and fighting for what became New Miserable Experience's now iconic album art. Keep up on band news, music, social media and more at ginblossoms.net.
An accomplished producer and multi-instrumentalist who has worked with everyone from The Shins to The Chieftains, Chris Funk is a founding member of beloved Pacific Northwest quintet The Decemberists, who mark their 20th anniversary this year. Known for a narrative heart that's half-Morrissey, half-Herman Melville, Rolling Stone has called their work "a triumph of theatrical imagination." On today's show, we discuss the formation of the band, how Chris recorded the entirety of their epic song cycle The Tain with a broken leg, and how Carson Ellis' visual components have played into the band's mystique for over two decades. We also get into Chris' production of the latest Stephen Malkmus LP and his globetrotting video series Funk Plus One, which exposed him to culture on a broader level through shared musical experiences. Visit thedecemberists.com for 20th anniversary tour dates and more. Get Chris' new solo album The Painted Porch via chrisfunk.bandcamp.com, with an exclusive vinyl variant limited to 250 copies and proceeds benefitting The Jeremy Wilson Foundation. You can also follow Chris on Twitter, @mrchrisfunk.