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Talking Heads

Talking Heads was an American rock band formed in 1974 in New York City and active until 1991. The band comprised David Byrne, Chris Frantz, Tina Weymouth and Jerry Harrison. Auxiliary musicians also regularly made appearances in concert and on the group’s albums.

The New Wave musical style of Talking Heads combined elements of punk rock, avant-garde, pop, funk, world music and art rock. Frontman and songwriter David Byrne contributed whimsical, esoteric lyrics to the band’s songs, and emphasized their showmanship through various multimedia projects and performances. Critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine describes Talking Heads as being “one of the most critically acclaimed bands of the ’80s, while managing to earn several pop hits.”

In 2002, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Four of the band’s albums appeared on Rolling Stone magazine’s 2003 list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and the Channel 4 100 Greatest Albums poll listed one album (Fear of Music) at number seventy-six.

History

1974–1977: First years

David Byrne, Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth were alumni of the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Rhode Island. There Byrne and Frantz formed a band called “The Artistics” in 1974. Weymouth was Frantz’s girlfriend and often provided the band with transportation. The Artistics dissolved within a year, and the three moved to New York, eventually sharing a communal loft. Unable to find a bass player in New York City, Frantz encouraged Weymouth to learn to play bass by listening to Suzi Quatro albums. They played their first gig as “Talking Heads” opening for the Ramones at CBGB on June 8, 1975.

In a later interview, Weymouth recalled how the group chose the name Talking Heads: “A friend had found the name in the TV Guide, which explained the term used by TV studios to describe a head-and-shoulder shot of a person talking as ‘all content, no action.’ It fit.”

Later in 1975, the trio recorded a series of demos for CBS, but the band was not signed to the label. They quickly drew a following and were signed to Sire Records in 1977. The group released their first single, “Love → Building on Fire” in February of that year. In March 1977, they added Jerry Harrison (guitar, keyboards, vocals), formerly of Jonathan Richman’s band The Modern Lovers.

Their first album, Talking Heads: 77, which did not contain the earlier single, was released soon thereafter.

Discography

Studio Albums

1977 – Talking Heads 77 – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-talking-heads-77/

1978 – More Songs About Building and Food – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-more-songs-about-buildings-and-food/

1979 – Fear of Music – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-fear-of-music/

1980 – Remain in Light – Coming soon 28/12/2015

True Stories – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-true-stories/

Naked – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-naked/

Compilations

Once in a Lifetime (Best of) – http://bopping-elf.co.uk/talking-heads/talking-heads-once-in-a-lifetime-best-of/

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