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Marshall Crenshaw with The Bottle Rockets
The Bottle Rockets have been making some of the most incisive, literate and lighter-raising American music for going on eighteen years now. And some of the loudest, with a reputation built on a rough and tumble snarl honed by a thousand nights on stages around the world. But that only speaks to part of the story of the Bottle Rockets. So many bands, when you unplug the amps, you find that the emperor has no clothes, that the songs collapse in the quiet; it was the thrill of the tables rattling and ears ringing that sold the goods; the cold of the beer, the heat of the moment.
Over the course of a career that’s spanned three decades, 13 albums and hundreds of songs, Marshall Crenshaw’s musical output has maintained a consistent fidelity to the qualities of melody, craftsmanship and passion, and his efforts have been rewarded with the devotion of a broad and remarkably loyal fan base. After an early break playing John Lennon in a touring company of the Broadway musical Beatlemania, the Michigan-bred musician began his recording career with the now legendary indie single “Something’s Gonna Happen,” on Alan Betrock’s seminal Shake label. His growing fame in his adopted hometown of New York City helped to win Crenshaw a deal with Warner Bros. Records, which released his self-titled 1982 debut album. With such classics as “Someday, Someway” and “Cynical Girl,” that LP established Crenshaw as one of his era’s preeminent tunesmiths — a stature that was confirmed by subsequent albums.