Big Star formed in 1971 in Memphis, Tennessee. Their music blended influences from the UK guitar pop bands of the 60s, and psychedelic and folk rock sounds of the US west coast. Their 1972 debut album was met with strong reviews, although poor marketing meant that it made little commercial impact. Chris Bell and Andy Hummel then left the band in frustration at their lack of success, putting Big Star's future in doubt. However, Alex Chilton and Jody Stephens continued, and another outstanding yet commercially disappointing album arrived in 1974. Despite recording material for a third album, they broke-up later that same year. Tracks from their unreleased record appeared on Third/Sister Lovers, issued by Rykodisc in 1978. Throughout the 80s and into the 90s Big Star emerged as a major influence on some big acts, helping to regenerate interest in the band. This led to a full reunion in 1993, with a new line-up featuring Ken Stringfellow and Jon Auer of The Posies, and in 2005 they recorded and released their first studio album in over 30 years. Their influence is still considerable, and a number of compilations and reissues means that their music is now being enjoyed by a larger, wider audience than ever before.
Followers: Jellyfish, Teenage Fanclub, Matthew Sweet, R.E.M., The Broken West, The New Pornographers, Gigolo Aunts, The Smithereens, The Replacements, The Afghan Whigs
Influenced By: The Beatles, The Byrds, The Kinks, The Who, The Beach Boys, Cheap Trick...