The X Brothers
Joe Bouchard on guitar and lead vocals.
Andy Hilfiger on bass guitar and vocals.
Jimmy Cacala on drums and vocals.
The X Brothers - A Brief Bio
Joe Bouchard was a founding member of rock legends Blue Öyster Cult. He joined that group in 1970 and was their bass player and a creative force in the band for 16 years. After 11 gold and platinum records for Columbia, he left BÖC in 1986 to pursue other goals. One of his early projects was the formation of the X Brothers.
The X Brothers were formed in 1988. Originally called the Cult Brothers, the group started as a four piece group with brothers Billy and Andy Hilfiger, on guitar and bass, respectively, and Jim Cacala on drums. As the Cult Brothers they toured all over the U.S. from Maine to Florida, Texas to Montana.
Due to a legal dispute with Blue Oyster Cult, The Cult Brothers changed their name to the X Brothers and in 1998 released a very successful CD entitled Solid Citizens. Right after the release of the CD, brother Billy was forund to have a brain tumor. For the next four years, even though their schedule was cut back drastically, the group continued to play shows with Billy including several in upstate New York.
In the meantime, Joe started a private teaching business and Andy became an executive in the fashion industry. But the lure of Rock and Roll would not quit for these diehards.
Andy played several shows with Kid Rock as his bassist which included a worldwide appearance on the VH1 Fashion Awards. Joe recorded a CD with Alice Cooper alums, Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith. And Jimmy performed as a lead singer in an upstate hardcore band.
Unfortunately, in 2001 Billy passed away due to his cancer. The band and large numbers of Billy's friends came together for a star studded concert at Don Hills in NYC honoring their fallen brother. It was a touching moment.
On the Fourth of July, 2002 the X Brothers played their first show without brother Billy at an outdoor fireworks show in Elmira NY. The show was attended by over 5000 people and was a smashing success. The X decided that they could and should continue to play together, but now as a trio.
In summer 2002 other shows were added to the schedule including very intense shows in Cleveland and Pittsburgh. They recently played CBGBs in NYC at a benefit to help the Rescue Dogs of 9-11. Even though there were 20 other bands on the bill, the X Brothers brought the house down with their high energy performance.
When Joe Bouchard was a music student at Ithaca College in the 60s, his brother Albert was a struggling musician living with rock group called Soft White Underbelly. During school breaks Joe would take the bus to New York and spend a week or two living with the group in their communal band house. Often there were extended jam sessions that would go until the sun came up.
Two years later in 1970 Joe was invited to become the band's bassist. After only a year of club gigs and demo sessions, they passed an audition for Columbia Records president Clive Davis. Clive signed them on the spot to a seven record contract. They felt poised for the big time, but they decided they needed a new name. After months of intense arguments they threw the naming process into the hands of their manager, Sandy Pearlman. The name, taken from one of Sandy's writings about a fictitious biker gang, was Blue Öyster Cult.
Blue Öyster Cult was not an overnight success. From constant touring they built a growing "cult" following. They opened shows all over the United States for groups such as Alice Cooper, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple and many more. Their first breakthrough album was the 1975 live set, On Your Feet or On Your Knees, which delighted the intense hard rock fans they had won over the years.
In 1976, BÖC recorded one of their most popular numbers Don't Fear the Reaper which in now an all-time favorite on classic rock radio. It was used in several movies including the original Halloween, and Stephen King's The Stand. In 1977, they recorded another classic, Godzilla, on their Spectres album for Columbia. In the early days of MTV, the BÖC video, Burnin’ for You, was a staple on that cable network and eventually became a worldwide hit.
Joe Bouchard recorded thirteen albums with Blue Öyster Cult for Columbia Records, and over the years was awarded nine gold albums and two platinum albums.
In 1986, Joe decided to retire from Blue Öyster Cult and left the band to pursue other goals. Over the years, Joe was a teacher in a private school, and worked in a music book publishing company. In 1986 he performed as a touring organist and pianist with Spencer Davis of the Spencer Davis Group. In 1998 he released his first self-produced CD for The X Brothers, entitled “Solid Citizens” on Cellsum Records. He recently released a new CD entitled "Back From Hell" featuring ex-Alice Cooper members, Neal Smith and Dennis Dunaway.
He is the author of four educational music books. He also hosted an instructional video: Rock Bass for Beginners distributed by Alfred Publishing. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Ithaca College and a Master of Music degree from The Hartt School at the University of Hartford.
In 1998 one of the most popular hard rock group of our time Metallica recorded Joe's song Astronomy on their CD "Garage Inc". This CD was immensely popular and ended up selling 5 million units. The Metallica CD as of this writing has gone five times platinum!
The Blue Öyster Cult catalog continues to thrive as we enter the 21st century. Many of the early BÖC songs have been repackaged in recent compilations on Sony/Legend records like Workshop of Telescopes and The Best of Blue Öyster Cult. Since the arrival of the Internet, BÖC fans from around the world have been more active than ever.
Discography with Blue Oyster Cult , Albums
1972 Blue Oyster Cult
1973 Tyranny & Mutation
1974 Secret Treaties
1975 On Your Feet or on Your Knees
1976 Agents of Fortune
1978 Some Enchanted Evening
1980 Cultosauraus Erectus
1981 Fire of Unknown Origin
1982 Extraterrestrial Live
1983 The Revolution by Night
1986 Club Ninja
1987 Career of Evil: The Metal Years
1989 (Don't Fear) the Reaper CBS Special
1990 On Flame with Rock & Roll CBS Special
1994 Live 1976
1995 Workshop of the Telescopes
2000 The Best of Blue Oyster Cult, Don't Fear the Reaper
Albums with other groups:
1989 Deadringer: Electrocution Of The Heart
1997 The X Brothers: Solid Citizens
2001 Bouchard Dunaway & Smith: Back From Hell
Books Alfred Publishing
Rock Guitar for Beginners
Beginning Rock Keyboards
Intermediate Rock Keyboards (with Seth Zowader)
Bass for the Absolute Beginner
Educational videos Alfred Publishing
Bass for Beginners
MTV Videos and Movies
The Marshall Plan
Burning for You
Take me Away
Dancin' in the Ruins
The Black and Blue Movie (with Black Sabbath) theatrical release
Blue Oyster Cult Live in Florida, Blue Jean Network
Live 1976, Castle Communications