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Morphine

Morphine is a rarity -- bluesy, bare-bones rock & roll without any guitars. Instead of guitar riffs, the trio relies on sliding two-string basslines, raucous saxophones, and wry, ironically detached vocals. During the mid-'90s, Morphine gained a sizable cult following in America, primarily due to good word of mouth, heavy college airplay, and positive reviews.

Morphine was formed in 1990 by bassist/vocalist Mark Sandman, who had previously played with the bluesy alternative rock band Treat Her Right, and Dana Colley (tenor and baritone saxophone), a former member of the local Boston group Three Colors. Sandman and Colley added drummer Jerome Dupree to complete the lineup. The group released its debut album, Good, on the independent Accurate/Distortion label in 1991; it was reissued on Rykodisc Records in 1992. Good received substantial airplay on American college radio stations, as well as favorable reviews in alternative publications across the country. After the release of Good, Dupree left the band and was replaced by Billy Conway, who had previously played with Sandman in Treat Her Right.

The positive reception to Good set the stage for 1993's Cure for Pain, which received good reviews from a variety of music and mainstream publications upon its spring release. Morphine supported Cure for Pain with an extensive American and European tour that lasted throughout 1994, which helped the album sell over 300,000 copies -- an impressive feat for an independent release. In 1995, Morphine released their third album, Yes, which also received favorable reviews and helped the band sustain its large cult following.

The success of Cure for Pain and Yes also attracted the attention of major record labels, and in late 1996, Dreamworks bought out the majority share of Morphine's contract from Rykodisc. Like Swimming, the group's debut for Dreamworks, was released in the spring of 1997 to generally favorable reviews, yet it failed to break Morphine out of cult status. On July 3, 1999, Sandman collapsed on-stage during a performance in Rome, dying of a heart attack at the age of 46. The Night was posthumously issued early the following year and the live disc Bootleg Detroit appeared in fall 2000. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

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I'm free now. Very cool song
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You have to ignore bobonnit- he hates EVERYTHING! he just likes all the attention- he's a troll
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Old school and a kick a** sax
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Good lord bob. Get over yourself.
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Bobonnit...I ' m a guess yer prolly a big Joe Bonamossa fan.
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This band stinks so bad I had to give it a thumbs down 1 minute in
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Had the honor to shake Mark Sandman's hand twice. Once after a Treat Her Right Show outside of Providence, RI (first time I ever heard of them, bought the album the next day) and once after a Morphine show at the Trocadero in Philly. Amazing talent, sadly missed. RIP Mark!
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I concur, yes yes yes
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This music changed my life hope it hits u like it did me rip sandman ur music will go on and on
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R.I.P. Jonathan Athon....Gon e too soon....
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rihil
One must check out the female fronted (Audra H. is gorgeous & devastatingl y poetic) 3-piece Oakland band 'Faust Arp' ... They rotate instruments & I don't think they are on here but their full EP is on soundcloud at /faustarp - it's just glorious sounding.
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Don't go quietly unto the grave mark! May you rest from the demons.
Like a setting sun.
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To taste the Sky...eXcuse me"d
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Top Five for sure
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falch6
I had the luck to see them live before Mark left. They were great!! Very unique and creative. Too bad :<
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Check out cure for pain, morphine cover band around the Philly Wilmington area
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Wow bob! You have no ear. No taste and should just change the damn station.
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The word AMAZING has become one of the most over used adjectives in the last few years. Everything and everybody are not amazing. This band is certainly an example of mediocrity and marginal talent that I found to be unlistenable .
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Aaaaaaaaaaaa a a a a a a a a a a a M A Z I N G ! ! ! ! ! ! & that's an understateme n t , to say the least.....
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Best band in the 90s !!!
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We miss you mark!
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Started listening to Mark Sandman before I knew who he was. I Think She Likes Me introduced me to the hill country sound. My buddy Jeremy played me the Get Shorty soundtrack, and I knew that voice. Morphine sees constant play on my ipod. Dancin' in the kitchen with my girlfriend to Top Floor, Bottom Buzzer...yea h , that's some beauty.
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I love Morphine...b o u g h t Cure for Pain without knowing what it was or what they sounded like just loved the name and title.. I've been a huge fan ever since
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BRENDA .... OH BRENDA ... BRENDA. You look like rain. You taste heaven I know because you look like rain luv,you look like rain.
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Since I met the devil I ain't felt the same oh no!
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------------ - - - - - - - M O R P H I N E SULFATE IS SOME GOOD SH!T-------- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
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Heard them the first time on track in a bar in Snowmass Village..nic e .
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Saw them on a glorious Labor Day weekend @ the MainStage for the Bumbershoot Atrs Festival...2 0 , 0 0 0 of us couldn't have been wrong...Mid- t o late 90's...Can't remember exactly, hmmmnnn?!
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Seen't dem for Jazz Fest sometime in da late 90's w/16 horsepower badass can't even remember da year
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pofsms
A friend of mine introduced me to them in the mid 90's and i still cant get enough.
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I really dig these cats What?
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Listenin since 91 never gets old
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I really dig these cats! They are very hip & ahead of their time.
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This freaked me out This isn't fake. Apparently, if you copy and paste this on ten comments in the next ten minutes, you will have the best day of your life tomorrow. You will either get kissed or asked out, if you break this chain you will see a little dead girl in your room tonight.
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shutyourfcki n m o u t h
Trax in Charlottesvi l l e VA 1995-96? with 16 Horsepower. People were crowding around the band so bad when they were trying to play pool that they kept having to ask people to move on every shot. (We were the only ones not bird-dogging them) Mark got so mad he gave up and walked away from the game. On his way backstage he B-lined right past us, he looked right at me, I nodded to him(you know the how are ya doing nod) he nodded back and said, What's up ManReally cool. We miss you so much Mark.
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morphine takes me to places I want to stay!
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The cure 4 the pain...love this band Rip Sand man
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293694697
Due to major motorcycle accidents over 26 years of rideing I have insane Pain in my Spine and both Knees.. I take 60mg of Morphine to feel almost human and LOTS of Good music Rock and Roll Will never Die
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kmoss767
Lyrics to french fries w pepper are crazy..durin g chorus he goes through 11 year periods of his life..last line is '' on 9/9/99 i HOPE im sitting on the backporch drinkin red wine'' he hoped, but never made it to sept 9th of that year...weird
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kmoss767
Saw em at ziggys in winston salem one month before he died...we all ate 50 ml of morphine and left a trail of airplane bottles and used condoms in our wake..mr sandman dying was worst thing that has happened in music period...
Report as inappropriate
if you were coming up in the early to mid 90's and were fortunate enough to get tapped into these guys, count your blessings... I was fortunate to see them in 1999 at House of Blues in MB...And as others mentioned, Sandman was just plain cool.
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charlesgrrr
Mark Sandman was largely under my radar in the 90s, but I now consider him to be one of the foremost songwriters of the late 80s and early 90s. He just has this 90s cool guy attitude that will never be replicated because frankly times have changed. He's the James Dean of the two string bass. Cheers Mark, you were a great songwriter and an interesting bass player
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btrow40
There're a big part of my life soundtrack 90's chapter..... . .
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I think Mark Sandman's death was a much greater tragedy than that of Kurt Cobain. I miss the hell out of them.
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Saw them m first in '98 at Jannus Landing oin St. Pete, FL. Then just saw them with new front man Jeremy Lyons at 2012 New Orleans Jazz Fest. Sounded amazing. They MUST tour again!
Report as inappropriate
milosdad
I was fortunate enough to see these guys twice including up front in a very small club. I'm not articulate enough to describe how great these shows were. Sad to say, as good as the records are, especially, the live bootleg, they don't even come close.
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WARNING: Morphine is addictive.
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mistycara13
I love their bluesy sound.......
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One of the true Greats of our generation.
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Mike Tyson said he loved Morphine.... .
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