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Spin Doctors (1988)

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  Summary  

Spin Doctors is an American alternative rock band formed in New York City, best known for their early 1990s hits, "Two Princes," and "Little Miss Can't Be Wrong," which peaked the Billboard Hot 100 charts at #7 & #17 respectively.

The current members are Chris Barron , Eric Schenkman , Aaron Comess , and Mark White .

  Biography  

The history of the Spin Doctors can be traced back to the late 1980s in New York City, originally as a band called Trucking Company, which included Canadian guitarist Eric Schenkman, John Popper, and later Chris Barron, who was John Popper's Princeton, New Jersey high school friend. Popper left this side project to focus on his main gig with Blues Traveler full time. With a name change to Spin Doctors, as well as the addition of Aaron Comess and Mark White, the classic lineup was in place by the spring of 1989.

The Spin Doctors were signed to Epic Records/Sony Music by A&R executive Frankie LaRocka in 1991. The band's Epic debut EP Up for Grabs...Live was recorded live at The Wetlands Preserve in lower Manhattan, and released in January 1991. The Spin Doctors were known for their somewhat lengthy live shows, sometimes jamming even more than is evident on their live releases. They also often performed double-bill gigs opening for their friends Blues Traveler, with members of both bands all jamming together as the transition from the Spin Doctors set into the Blues Traveler set. The Spin Doctors have many songs from their early club days that were never officially released, but remain circulated via concert recordings.

The Spin Doctors' debut studio album, Pocket Full of Kryptonite was released in August 1991. The band continued to play extensive live shows, gaining grassroots fans, as the album was mostly ignored commercially. In summer 1992, the band toured with the first lineup of the H.O.R.D.E. festival, sharing the stage with fellow jam bands Widespread Panic, Blues Traveler, and Phish. That summer, commercial popularity heated up, as radio and MTV began playing "Little Miss Can't Be Wrong" and "Two Princes" directed by filmmaker Rich Murray (who directed many of the band's videos). The album went Gold in September 1992, and then received another boost in sales after the band's appearance on Saturday Night Live in October 1992. Additional videos and singles followed for "What Time Is It," "How Could You Want Him ," and "Jimmy Olsen's Blues." By June 1993, the album went Triple Platinum. Ultimately it sold over five million copies in the U.S. and another five million overseas, and peaked at #3 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart.

" popularity is based on universal rock & roll virtues," said Rolling Stone, which put the band on the cover of its January 7, 1993 issue. "The Doctors aren't trying to blaze new trails. They know we've been down this way with the Stones, Curtis Mayfield, and a few of their other touchstones. But the proof—plenty of it—is in the party." The Spin Doctors made an appearance on Sesame Street, singing a modified version of "Two Princes" that emphasized the importance of sharing. In 1993, they recorded covers of "Have You Ever Seen The Rain?," originally by Creedence Clearwater Revival, for the film Philadelphia and "Spanish Castle Magic" for Stone Free: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix.

The Spin Doctors' second studio album, Turn It Upside Down, released in June 1994, was not quite as commercially successful as Pocket Full of Kryptonite, although it did sell a million copies in the U.S. and a million overseas. The second single, "You Let Your Heart Go Too Fast," was a modest hit (#42 on the pop chart). This album also featured "Cleopatra's Cat," "Mary Jane," "Hungry Hamed's," and "Bags Of Dirt." The band set out on a three-month headlining tour, and played to immense crowds at Woodstock '94 and the Glastonbury Festival. Shortly after the release of Turn It Upside Down, original guitarist Eric Schenkman left the band in September 1994 by walking offstage during a concert in Berkeley, California citing musical and personal differences, and being weary of the road. Schenkman was replaced by Anthony Krizan.

Featuring new guitarist Krizan, the Spin Doctors released You've Got to Believe in Something . It produced the single and video "She Used To Be Mine." They performed on the Late Show with David Letterman and did some touring, with Ivan Neville joining the band on keyboards. During this period, the Spin Doctors contributed the theme song to Seasons 2 and 3 of the television show Spin City. After touring wrapped up in the fall of 1996, guitarist Anthony Krizan eventually left the band, for reasons that remain relatively unknown. He was replaced by Israeli musician Eran Tabib after auditioning nearly 200 candidates. You've Got To Believe In Something did not live up to previous album sales, selling only 75,000 copies. Epic dropped the band in 1996.

In 1998, the Spin Doctors signed to Uptown/Universal and released Here Comes the Bride in June 1999. During the recording of Here Comes The Bride, Mark White left the band. The bass tracks on the album were finished by original band member Aaron Comess. During the tour supporting Here Comes the Bride, Chris Barron lost his voice due to a rare acute form of vocal cord paralysis that severely affected his ability to talk, let alone sing. He was told he had a 50-50 chance of ever talking or singing normally again. Barron's younger brother, CansaFis Barron, subbed for a few shows, and keyboardist Ivan Neville also took over vocal duties for a few dates, but the band eventually cancelled the remainder of its tour. Barron's voice came back in early 2000 , at which point he began performing with his band Chris Barron and the Give Daddy Five. Barron undertook what he calls "a journeyman songwriting experience," composing tunes with Blues Traveler's John Popper and with former BMI executive Jeff Cohen.

The Spin Doctors remained inactive as a band until September 2001, when news about the closing of legendary NYC venue Wetlands sparked the original four members to reunite. On September 7, 2001, the original line-up took the stage for the first time since 1994 to play at Wetlands. It was the final closing week of the club. The landmark show was a great success for the fans and the band.

Odd shows followed in 2002 through 2005, which eventually led to a brand new studio album, Nice Talking to Me, released on September 13, 2005. The single "Can't Kick The Habit" was included on the soundtrack to the movie Grandma's Boy. It received moderate radio airplay, along with the songs "Margarita" and the title track "Nice Talking to Me." While the record received good reviews, follow-up proved difficult when the record company that released it went out of business.

In 2008, the band continued to play one-off live shows in the USA and Europe. Drummer Aaron Comess released an instrumental record of all his own compositions entitled Catskills Cry featuring bassist Tony Levin and guitarist Bill Dillon.

In 2009, Chris Barron released the solo record Pancho and the Kid on Valley Entertainment.

During the summer of 2010, Chris Barron released Songs From The Summer of Sangria. This five-song EP was his first official release with his band The Time Bandits.

In 2011, the band will celebrate the 20-year anniversary of Pocket Full of Kryptonite and tour in the UK and the US. Sony Legacy released a 20th anniversary edition with bonus material on August 29, 2011.

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  Band members   

  Albums 

  Tracks  

Name Duration Released
Sugar 04:18 13/09/2005
Nice Talking To Me 03:59 13/09/2005
Tonight You Could Steal Me Away 04:26 13/09/2005
Genuine 05:40 13/09/2005
My Problem Now 03:19 13/09/2005
Can't Kick The Habit 08:16 13/09/2005
I'd Like To Love You 05:03 13/09/2005
Happily Ever After 03:21 13/09/2005
Margarita 03:01 13/09/2005
Miss America 03:32 24/10/2000
Here Comes the Bride 03:13 01/06/1999
Key to the Kingdom 04:04 01/06/1999
Gorilla Boy 03:11 01/06/1999
Siren Dress 03:15 01/06/1999
Wow 04:14 01/06/1999
Tomorrow Can Pay the Rent 11:01 01/06/1999
Gone Mad 04:19 01/06/1999
Diamond 03:47 01/06/1999
The Man 03:50 01/06/1999
Dodging Assassins 03:11 01/06/1999
Waiting for the Blow 03:15 01/06/1999
The Bigger I Laugh, the Harder I Cry 03:26 01/06/1999
Vampires in the Sun 02:57 01/06/1999
Fisherman's Delight 04:11 01/06/1999
She Used to Be Mine 03:35 05/1996
I Can't Believe You're Still With Her 03:44 05/1996
That's The Way 05:27 05/1996
Dogs on a Doe 05:12 05/1996
Sister Sisyphus 04:06 05/1996
House 03:53 05/1996
If Wishes Were Horses 04:29 05/1996
You've Got to Believe in Something 04:02 05/1996
Where Angels Fear to Tread 04:02 05/1996
'bout a Train 05:25 05/1996
To Make Me Blue 03:33 05/1996
She's Not You 05:06 05/1996
Mary Jane 03:41 14/06/1994
Bags of Dirt 04:47 14/06/1994
Indifference 04:23 14/06/1994
Biscuit Head 04:19 14/06/1994
Hungry Hamed's 05:11 14/06/1994
Cleopatra's Cat 04:04 14/06/1994
Someday All This Will Be Road 04:41 14/06/1994
You Let Your Heart Go Too Fast 03:49 14/06/1994
Laraby's Gang 03:39 14/06/1994
More Than Meets the Ear 03:55 14/06/1994
More Than She Knows 02:12 20/08/1991
Refrigerator Car 04:46 20/08/1991
Forty or Fifty 04:23 20/08/1991
What Time Is It? 04:50 20/08/1991
Jimmy Olsen's Blues 04:38 20/08/1991
Shinbone Alley/Hard to Exist 12:42 20/08/1991
How Could You Want Him 04:59 20/08/1991
Off My Line 03:58 20/08/1991
Two Princes 04:18 20/08/1991
Freeway of the Plains/Lady Kerosene 10:41 01/1991
At This Hour 06:05 01/1991
Big Fat Funky Booty 06:55 01/1991
Rosetta Stone 07:58 01/1991
Little Miss Can't Be Wrong 04:51 01/1991
Yo Mamas a Pajama 03:53 01/1991
Sweet Widow 11:38
Shinbone Alley 08:13
Yo Baby 05:50
What Time Is It?/Off My Line 12:19
Stepped on a Crack 05:13

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  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Spin Doctors", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.