Oral History

Slow Change May Pull Us Apart: The Oral History of Simple Minds’ ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me)’

This February marks the 30th anniversary of The Breakfast Club, director John Hughes' classic teen-angst flick about five archetypal high school students (a brain, a…
By: Andrew Unterberger / February 24, 2015

Get Yourself Control: The Oral History of Soundgarden’s ‘Superunknown’

Somewhere between a man beating himself bloody with spoons and a producer ripping a door off its hinges, Soundgarden made the record they'd been waiting…
By: Stacey Anderson / June 5, 2014

You Will Ache Like I Ache: The Oral History of Hole’s ‘Live Through This’

It's hard not to work through the what if's of Live Through This. What if the world had gotten a proper introduction to this album?
By: Jessica Hopper / April 14, 2014

Clan in Da Back: The Behind-the-Scenes Oral History of ‘Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)’

The Wu-Tang Clan introduced themselves to the world cloaked in a shroud of mystery. Claiming the hip-hop hinterland of Staten Island as their homeland, the…
By: Phillip Mlynar / November 5, 2013

Biddy Biddy Bop: The Oral History of Us3’s Bold Jazz-Rap Breakthrough ‘Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)’

The Blue Note Records catalogue dates back to 1939 — and names like Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and Ornette Coleman are just the tip of…
By: Kory Grow / October 24, 2013

Enter Sandman: The Oral History of Adam Sandler’s ‘They’re All Gonna Laugh at You!’

During his first three seasons on Saturday Night Live, Adam Sandler's best and funniest characters included a mushmouthed man-child in a straw hat, a hanky-waving…
By: David Marchese / September 26, 2013

She’s Such a Bitch: The Oral History of Juliana Hatfield Three’s ‘My Sister’

In 1993 at the age of 26, Juliana Hatfield was in the eye of the alternative-rock storm. She'd made a name for herself as one…
By: Kory Grow / August 28, 2013

Wrong Way on a One-Way Track: The Oral History of Soul Asylum’s ‘Runaway Train’

In 1992, it might have looked like Soul Asylum were a band nearing the end of their career, not one about to embark on a…
By: David Peisner / July 24, 2013

Girly Show: The Oral History of Liz Phair’s ‘Exile In Guyville’

In 1993, no rock record was as divisive as Liz Phair's Exile in Guyville. With her 18-song double-LP debut, Phair pried the lid off her…
By: Jessica Hopper / June 24, 2013

Let It Bleed: The Oral History of PJ Harvey’s ‘Rid of Me’

PJ Harvey has a walloping, 50-foot-tall legacy — musicially and emotionally raw when stadium angst was a boys club; opening the door for everyone from…
By: David Peisner / May 1, 2013

Souls of Mischief Look Back at 20 Years of ’93 ‘Til Infinity’

Los Angeles was the molten-hot core of hip-hip in the early '90s, and no year was more heated than 1993. The feud between Dr. Dre…
By: Jordan Sargent / March 26, 2013

The, Um, Oral History of King Missile’s ‘Detachable Penis’

It's easy to forget just how weird the landscape of popular music was in the early-to-mid-'90s. The success of bands like R.E.M., the Red Hot…
By: David Peisner / February 25, 2013

Cracker Look Back at 20 Years of ‘Low’

The jangle and rasp of "Low," the leadoff track from Cracker's 1993 platinum album Kerosene Hat, was a ubiquitous signpost of the alternative-as-the-new-mainstream era.
By: David Menconi / January 29, 2013

Rage Against the Machine Look Back on 20 Years of ‘Killing in the Name’

With lyrics comparing cops to Klansmen, a free-noise breakdown, and a bridge containing "FUCK YOU" repeated no less than 16 times, rap-rock agitators Rage Against…
By: Kory Grow / November 19, 2012

Sisters Outsiders: The Oral History of the ‘Bikini Kill’ EP

Bikini Kill were more than a band — and intentionally so. They were a beacon and a call to arms. They were "Girl you ca…
By: Jessica Hopper / November 15, 2012

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic Looks Back at 20 Years of ‘Smells Like Nirvana’

"I was such a fan of the band," says parody kingpin "Weird Al" Yankovic about Nirvana. "I heard Nevermind and I thought, Oh this i…
By: Christopher R. Weingarten / October 11, 2012

Screaming Trees Look Back at 20 Years of ‘Nearly Lost You’

At the onset of the '90s, major labels didn't consider the Screaming Trees an especially attractive prospect — literally. "I recall getting in an argument…
By: Mark Yarm / August 10, 2012

The Pharcyde Look Back at 20 Years of ‘Passin’ Me By’

In early 1992, the international rap profile of Los Angeles was N.W.A's appetite for destruction, Ice-T's new-jack hustles, and Cypress Hill's hands on the pump.
By: Chris Martins / June 28, 2012

Pantera Look Back at 20 Years of ‘Walk’

Metal entered its awkward phase in 1992. The rise of Nirvana and grunge had made the genre seem passé to radio programmers, scene leaders Metallica…
By: Kory Grow / May 22, 2012

Sugar Look Back at 20 Years of ‘If I Can’t Change Your Mind’

If 1991 was the year punk broke, then 1992 was the year everyone tried to pick up the pieces, or, alternately, figure out how to…
By: Steve Kandell / April 27, 2012
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