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Letters To Cleo

Melding hooky pop songs with the muscled approach of a rock band, Letters to Cleo formed in Boston in 1990. Guitarist Greg McKenna actually started Letters to Cleo as another group; when he began searching for a background singer to complete his lineup, he found Kay Hanley. A powerhouse vocalist who had previously performed in a local new wave group, Hanley remained with McKenna after the original band fell apart several months later. The band adopted a peppy power pop sound as well as a new name, Letters to Cleo, which made reference to a pen pal with whom Hanley had corresponded during her childhood. Guitarist Michael Eisenstien (whom Hanley would later marry), drummer Stacy Jones, and bassist Scott Reibling soon completed the lineup, and the quintet spent several years touring the Boston circuit.

Now a seasoned band, Letters to Cleo saw its first full-length recording, Aurora Gory Alice, hit the market in 1993. The debut album was released under the local Cherry Disc Records and fared much better than expected, which brought the band to the attention of major-label Giant Records. Giant issued a re-release of Aurora Gory Alice in 1994, followed by the sophomore recording Wholesale Meats and Fish one year later. Letters to Cleo also issued a pair of notable singles in 1995, "Awake" and "Here & Now," the latter of which received positive exposure on MTV and became a Top Ten hit on the Modern Rock Tracks chart. "Here & Now" was also used on the popular show Melrose Place, where it soundtracked the closing credits and eventually found its way onto the show's hit soundtrack. Even so, Wholesale Meats and Fish didn't do as well as its predecessor, and it would be two years before the next album, Go!, appeared. By this time, drummer Stacy Jones had parted ways with Letters to Cleo to join the group Veruca Salt (he would later launch his own band, American Hi-Fi), and Tom Polce had taken the vacant spot. The group returned in 1998 with Sister, which collected B-sides and material from early demo recordings.

Sister proved to be the band's final recording. Letters to Cleo played its last gig on May 4, 2000, and the Boston Globe officially announced the breakup one month later. However, having already inked a contract to complete work on Molly-O, an animated series for television, the bandmates partnered together for a brief period before going their own ways. Stacy Jones enjoyed a brief flash of success with American Hi-Fi's 2001 hit single, "Flavor of the Weak," and Hanley piloted her strong vocals into a solo career. The singer also involved herself with various other projects, providing vocals for the Jose and the Pussycats movie (as well as appearing on its surprisingly endearing soundtrack) and singing backup vocals for Miley Cyrus' tour in 2008. ~ Charlotte Dillon & Andrew Leahey, Rovi
full bio

Comments

I am amazed at how overused the word amazing is. It is amazing how easily people claim to be amazed. Not everything is amazing. And this band is not amazing. They are mediocre and boring.
Amazing band all around!
10 things I hate about you ^~^ club skunk <3 ahhhhh love this song and the movie ^.^
Never realized until now that she did the vocals in Josie and the pussycats.
Surprised there's no mention of 10 Things I Hate About You. I'm pretty sure LTC actually plays Julia Stiles' favorite band in that movie (awesome movie).
Why does pandora nevermind they know what they do!
follow me ill follow back!
Completely baffled why LTC never became huge--awesom e songs and totally radio friendly.
let's not forget all the movies LTC had songs it. They were the teen movie IT band for a good # of years. Notably in 10things I hate about you and many others in the mid-late 90's. Kay also had success in musical theatre in joesph.....
Discovered them on the soundtrack to the Craft, and LOVED them...bough t their albums and was obsessed. By the time they were in TTIHAY, I was like, hey, THAT'S MY FREAKING FAVORITE BAND TOO...I thought Julia Stiles character was inspired by me.....
awesumnzz xD
psychicjunki e b y - p r o x y : LTC play on the rooftop at the end of 10 Things I Hate About You with Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles ("O" stars Josh Hartnett & Julia Sitles, both are modern interpretati o n s of Shakespeare though).
I recently saw 'O' with Leo Decaprio and Julia Styles and Letters to Cleo play live on top of a building during the closing credits.
lots of noise
krudd3
They were great on the ""The Craft" soundtrack.. . p e r f e c t sound for the movie.
krudd3
Amazing voice, new life to old lyrics. Fun all around!
One of the best groups the 90's have to offer. Love her voice
trefry
Kay Hanley rocks. My favorite power female vocalist. What satire in the lyrics.
I was surprised to hear Hanley provided backup to Miley Cyrus. If you listen to Cyrus's Start All Over, it literally sounds like it could be LTC doing the song. The vocals are so similar to Hanley's that I have to assume Cyrus was influenced by her. In looking up who wrote Start All Over, I was shocked to see it's yet another cover song written by the late, great Ednaswap.
yes, drummer is mylie's music director and hired kay/the singer to do back ups and dance...nice to have friends. also american hifi has a new album out.
ladyspineret t e _
like the vocalists voice
Go was an Awesome album. I listen to it all the time.
x13supernova 1 3 x
doesnt the drummer play for miley cyrus now?
It's too bad this band broke up, they are definitely the best thing to come out of Boston. (and yes that includes the Dead Sox, Boo-hoo-ians and Patsy-riots) Anyone know why they split? They put out decent stuff.
There are incorrect facts in this artist bio. Sister was actually their first album, and it was re-released (and maybe re-mastered) in 1998. Go! was the band's last album.
saw these guys in some swill hole in boston back in the day .great band close up in a club.
i loved them on "10 things i hate about you" that's when i first heard of them.
quincunx57
Always loved these guys. Did anybody see them on "10 things I hate about you?"
chitwood.and r e w
they do not suck. you do.
tledford3
OMG this group sucks! PUKE!
Thanks sista! I picked up Go! for you at a yardsale once and HAD to listen to make sure it wasn't scratched... nope, it's great! hehe, I love letters to cleo!!
caroline_661
Awesome! They rock!

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