Pre-orders will ship April 1, 2008
Over thirty years later, take a step back into the future and rediscover the birth of Chicago punk, new wave, alternative, indie and experimental rock featuring 11 studio recordings, 9 previously unreleased, 5 new commentary tracks by Skafish himself including the historically accurate story of Sid Vicious’ last public event at a Skafish performance in New York, a 36 page booklet featuring liner notes by rock legends Cheap Trick, rare and previously unseen photos and complete lyrics. Experience the music that Cheap Trick says “started it all.”
What’s This? 1976-1979 is the first release for 829 Records, Skafish’s own label. All of the master tapes to these recording sessions were thought to be lost. The last master tape was found in October of 2006. The release documents the birth of the Chicago punk, new wave, alternative and indie rock scene, featuring what are believed to be the first Chicago recordings of these genres. I.R.S. Records CEO Miles Copeland credits Skafish as being the artist who “put Chicago on the map as the pioneer of Punk and New Wave there and on the international stage, gave audiences a really insane ride." In the CD’s liner notes, Cheap Trick refer to Skafish’s performances and these recordings as “the music that started it all.”
Skafish first burst onto the Chicago scene in February 1976 when the then 19 year old unleashed his shocking new style of performance with his newly formed band. His performing resume includes being the first Chicago punk / alternative artist to perform at CBGB’s in New York in April 1977; The Whiskey A Go Go in Los Angeles in February 1978; appearing in London in July 1980 before an audience of 45,000 with The Police, UB-40 and Squeeze; and that August, being filmed in front of approximately 20,000 people in the south of France for the now legendary international live concert film extravaganza, Urgh! A Music War, while on tour in England and Europe with Sting, The Police, XTC, Squeeze, and UB-40. Skafish has toured and/or performed with the likes of: Ramones, Iggy Pop, The Police, U-2, XTC, The Stranglers, Squeeze, New Order, Ultravox, Scorpions, UB-40, The Cramps, The Mumps, The Lemonheads, Scorpions, Sector 27, Sha Na Na and Dead Boys.
Skafish was the first American artist ever to be signed to the now legendary I.R.S Records label for which he released his Eponymous debut LP in 1980 and Conversation in 1983. Other releases include 1988’s Limited Series Cassette and Best Kept Secrets in 1992. In 2005, Skafish formed the La Befana Records label for jazz, classical, world and new age projects. The label’s first release was Tidings Of Comfort And Joy: A Jazz Piano Trio Christmas in May 2006. La Befana Records also serves as the parent company for other Skafish owned subsidiaries, including 829 Records.