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The B-52's

The first of many acts to cement the college town of Athens, GA, as a hotbed of alternative music, the B-52's took their name from the Southern slang for the mile-high bouffant wigs sported by singers Kate Pierson and Cindy Wilson, a look emblematic of the band's campy, thrift-store aesthetic. The five-piece group, which also included founding members Fred Schneider, guitarist Ricky Wilson (Cindy's older brother), and drummer Keith Strickland, formed in the mid-'70s after a drunken evening at a Chinese restaurant; the bandmembers had little or no previous musical experience, and performed most of their earliest shows with taped guitar and percussion accompaniment.

After pressing up a few thousand copies of the single "Rock Lobster," the B-52's traveled to the famed Max's Kansas City club for their first paying gig. Subsequent appearances at CBGB brought the group to the attention of the New York press, and in 1979, they issued their self-titled debut album, a collection of manic, bizarre, and eminently danceable songs which scored an underground club hit with a reworked version of "Rock Lobster." The following year, they issued Wild Planet, which reached the Top 20 on the U.S. album charts; Party Mix!, an EP's worth of reworked material from the band's first two proper outings, appeared in 1981.

Released in 1982, the EP Mesopotamia arose out of a series of aborted sessions with producer David Byrne which saw the B-52's largely abandon their trademark sense of humor, a situation rectified by the following year's Whammy!, a move into electronic territory. After a Schneider solo LP, 1984's Fred Schneider & the Shake Society, the group returned to the studio to record 1986's Bouncing Off the Satellites. On October 12, 1985, however, Ricky Wilson died; though originally his death was attributed to natural causes, it was later revealed that he had succumbed to AIDS. In light of Wilson's death, the group found it impossible to promote the new album, and they spent the next several years in seclusion.

In 1989, the B-52's finally returned with Cosmic Thing, their most commercially successful effort to date. Marked by Strickland's move from drums to guitar and club-friendly production from Don Was and Nile Rodgers, the album launched several hit singles, including the party smash "Love Shack," "Roam," and "Deadbeat Club." In 1990, Cindy Wilson retired from active duty, leaving the remaining trio to soldier on for 1992's Good Stuff. A year later, dubbed the BC-52's, they performed the theme song for Steven Spielberg's live-action feature The Flintstones. Wilson returned to the group for a tour supporting the release of 1998's hits collection Time Capsule. Four years later the double-disc Nude on the Moon compilation would dive deeper into their catalog by featuring rare tracks, live recordings, and remixes along with the hits. The year 2008 found the band returning with a new album for the first time in 16 years. Released by Astralwerks, Funplex, was a slick, synthesizer-driven effort produced by Steve Osborne. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Funplex (Radio Single)

Comments

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I am 50 years old jamming them since I was 19 they rock
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taype12
Say mermaids five times and don't talk until you post this on two other songs then touch water
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DITTO raulm1961 (B52's are awesome just like most of New Wave music was also great. I was in my 30's back then. Great period for alternative music.)
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Fred is super funny
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Hold on because we have Venus and rock lobster,nobo d y gets it, wow,o hey I forget quiche la poodle
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B52's are awesome just like most of New Wave music was also great. I was in my 20's back then. Great period for alternative music.
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I love rock lobster
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The world is gone insane,but lucky for me I have quiche lapoodle,roc k lobster and luv shack
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That would be my childhood home,with venus as my my mother ,the only!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! !
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Wow I forgot about quiche la poodle
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iobdennis
me too! can't wait!
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Going to see them perform tonight!
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Love planet Claire,every time I hear this I am back in my first apartment,la v a lamps vodka in the freezer x in the candy jar and let's not forget the rock lobster bathroom
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Tin roof..... Rusted
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So glad my mom was an 80's chick! Or else I wouldn't know who the b-52's are.
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We'll dance in the garden of torn sheets in the rain!!! We're the deadbeat club.
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saw them Halloween back in the day great show and memoirs not many shows like that now
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Love,Give Me Back My Man & Planet Clair the first song I ever heard by them
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I wouldn't bet on it Mike.
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Will music ever be this fun, again?
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Channel Z is my favorite.
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I love them.
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Love Shack - great video, dance tune. Gives me an auto high.
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melinda.odon n e l l 5
Saw them a couple times in early eighties, great band.
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love shack
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You know...you want me to too two...you know you love do or dew or du....you want me to drop one
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What is keeping The B-52's out of the Hall?

A) Idiocy
B) Ignorance
C) Gimmickiness
D) Campiness
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Hardly a mention of Kate Pierson who worked with many other artists, including Iggy Pop with who she sang Candy
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Reminds me of my Marine Corps days
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Look! It's a bikini whale!
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Extremely underrated band. Early b52s kicked major a**. Check out the black and white live videos on YouTube. Tight band. Great vocals. 1 of the us top bands . period.
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B-52`s are great. Unlike any other band ever!
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I love Kate and Cindy's harmony. Unlike any other band.
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This rocket leaves for Mars soon...
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glenceltic1
They put on one hell of a show
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Good sound.
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I found about them when I herd rock lobster! loved them ever sense
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you like the B52's you will love my band mountains of teenage girl turds
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daniel.craft 1
Don't read this because it actually works you will get kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. However if you don't post this comment you will die in 2 days.Now that you've started reading don't stop. Put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes when done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters. This is scary but it actually works. Don't read this because it actually works you will get kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. H
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Who's to blame
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Saw them Earth day in Central Park (can't remember the year)
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Fun band. Unique sound only saw them once back in the mid 80s. Great show. Reminds me what it felt like to be young every time I hear them.
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They rock
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Oh fu*k My dad told me how my mother listened to this in High school or whatever.... . b u t we both hated it.....but now we just laugh the fu*k at it.
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Rock Lobster...<> <
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Wacky & fun
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Snuck into their concert in NYC back in 1993 (lied about my age!). What a fun time! They were introduced by RuPaul -- hilarious. Only downside was that I accidentally punched my sister in the face while dancing. LOL :)
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they will never die or get old they were cutting age when they came out and always will be the cream of the crop
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conroytr
Rock Lobster's gotta be my fav by them. Just do its lack of coherence
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The B-52's personify good time party music.
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