The History Of Sublime And Long Beach

Dub Allstars Essay, Research Paper

Sublime was and still is one of the most inspirational bands that has ever existed. Eventhough Bradley Nowell is not still busting out new beats, the fans keep listening and thealbums keep coming out. From Long Beach, California three friends got together and started to jam and make aband. They started out just messing around. Bradley Nowell took the mic in his handalong with a guitar and a pen. Eric Wilson grabbed the bass guitar. Floyd Bud Gaughwith the hot drums. Sublime never thought from the beginning that they would be famous or even release aCD, but after a while the messing around became serious. Sublime founded a record label they called Skunk Records . The band members andtheir friends sold 42,000 copies of their first CD 40o.z. To Freedom literally out of thetrunk of their car. This album was very popular, one reason may be because it wasn t limited to one typeof music; it featured Punk Rock, Ska, Rock, Hip-Hop, and Reggae. It was very popularamong surfers and skaters. Smoke Two Joints and Date Rape were played on theradio very often along the west coast. Even with their new found fame Sublime never let the pride go to their heads, they stillconsidered themselves a garage band . When they released their second CD, RobbinThe Hood people were expecting more, and that s what they got, what people didn texpect was the garage band sound. It seemed they would sell-out, they never did. Robbin The Hood featured four home produced and recorded songs and twelve othergreat songs that remained favorites everywhere. Sublime s first two CD s were on the Billboard Charts for record times for their typeof music. 40o.z. To Freedom remained on top of the charts for over fifty weeks. Robbin The Hood was on the charts for twenty-three weeks. Bradly Nowell always expressed himself through music, many of his songs seem likeproblems that are encountered in the everyday world. When things would be much easierto say upon the microphone like a Boss D.J. But I wont walk up upon the sea like it wasdry land Boss D.J. ain t nothing but a man…Rumors spreading all over my town but it sjust stones and sticks, Upon the microphone is where I goto get my fix. When Sublime could have been playing huge clubs and making a lot of money, theypreferred playing for a small club and knowing most of the crowd. Skunk Records takespride in the fact that all of their bands are friends and that they are on big family. Sublimewas considered a trio but it wasn t, if you listen carefully to the music and read the credits,you will hear about friends from the other bands who are included in the songs. When Brad was recording the third album entitled Sublime he had also quit drugs.This made the CD sound more like it was made in a recording studio. The sounds thatwere put out were great but told a different story. Since the lyrics were written beforethen they had the same pace, but the beat was of a whole new kind. This album trulyproved Sublime s capabilities. The CD was favored by many and it was considered a breakthrough album. Critics went crazy over the fact that every song on the CD deservedrecognition. Everyone who heard it really respected it. Brad had just gotten married a week earlier, had a one year old son and finally foundhappiness. He was about to do a debut concert for the release of a self-title album, he wasextremely excited. Brad had been off drugs for about four months now and was in hishotel room. He knocked on Eric Wilson s door and asked him if he wanted to go for awalk on the beach. Eric just ignored him and went back to bed, this would be the last timeanybody would see Brad alive again. Brad went for a walk on the beach with his dog Louie, also known as LouDog. Lateron Bud came into Brad s room and found him dead on the floor. Louie was standing onhis chest as if he was giving Brad CPR. Brad had overdosed on heroine. He gave himself ashot of what would have given himself a high four months earlier, his body lost theimmunity and he died. Troy Nowell, Brad s wife spoke out against drugs after his death. She did talks tocrowds with a few of the band members. Troy went on a Pepsi Presentation wheremillions of teenagers saw her speak about Brad and see the real effects of drugs. The self-title album was put off for few days for the recovery of Sublime and theirfriends. Upon release of the CD a reporter from Time Magazine said Sublime could berock s next big thing-except the group s lead singer is already dead from an overdose .When Bud and Eric were questioned if Sublime would move on they said As with

Nirvana Sublime died when Brad did, [we] don t think that we ll ever use the name ofSublime again, only in a sign of respect . Many mourned the death of Brad and visit hisresting place every year. A station in Long Beach played the CD 40o.z. To Freedom twenty-four hours straight the day of his death. The next year a CD entitled Second Hand Smoke was released it was compiled by; aproducer known as Miguel , Bud, and Eric. The CD was comprised of tracks that hadnot yet been released or were remixes. Fans were happy to see that CDs would still bereleased even though Brad was gone. Many loved the CD but a few thought it was a ripoff. The Skunk Records family had a hard time over coming the thought of Brad beinggone, they had always looked up to him and loved him. The family and friends of Bradley still did not want to see an end to the creativity and music of Sublime. Another CD wasreleased one year later giving credit to the true inspiration. It was tracks from live concertshowing what the band was really about. It was entitled Stand By Your Van named afterthe famous Sublime Van that they drove to their concerts. The same year that Stand By Your Van was released another CD was released called Sublime Acoustic; Bradly Nowell And Friends . This was compiled by Brad s father.Some said that it was a way to make money but Mr.Nowell said that it was a way to reachout to the fans and show them how he made his music. This CD was made in his homeand his friends homes. It had a lot of messing around and mixing up. Sublime Acoustic contained songs from other CDs in acoustic. In 1997 Skunk Records started a tour called SnoCore . This was for skaters andsnowboarders to go and listen to music while they skate, snowboard, and have fun. Budand Eric formed a group called Long Beach Dub Allstars also known as Lbdas . Thesinger was Opie Ortiz, the man who was known for his artistic abilities. The band was inmemory of Bradly Nowell and was not all that serious. When they saw how much the fansloved the music it all changed. Right now you can only find out about Lbdas on the internet. They have releasedabout seven or eight songs on their website availible for download. Their bandwith hasmaxed out six times because of people downloading the songs. Lbdas is recording a CD called Burn Unit and it will be in stores in April. Thesound is pretty much like Sublime but with a little more Ska. The band hopes to reach ashigh as Sublime and maybe a little bit higher, from the looks of it they might acomplishmore. There is a quote that often comes up in Sublime tributes and on countless web pagesdedicated to the band which describes Sublime as a below average punk band that everykid wants to play his party. Though many authors are quick to point out that Sublime sstyle reached far beyond that, live Sublime- even at the height of their career- alwaysretained that three-guys-playing-for-beer attitude. Whether in front of 50 or 50,000people, Sublime was either at a party, brought one along or caused on to start. Just threeguys and a dalmation jumping onstage and looking for a good time. Often playing withouta setlist and letting the show go in any direction it chose, the Sublime experiance had theease of an open-invitation of a Long Beach backyard party. Undedicated to one specific genre or clique, Sublime was a direct representation of theSouthern California beach community where color, race, or musical style didn t reallymatter. One of the few bands that could remain so individualistic yet appeal to so manydifferent kinds of people, Sublime s shows would have dread-locked Rasta loversgrooving, beach bunnies dancing, and SoCal tatooed punks moshing- all to the same song. Anyone who tells you Sublime were always good live is lying, but that s what makesthem so memorible. There were those nights that when extended members of the sublimefamily would jump on stage and for their go at the mic. But even then the guys were ableto groove together, peppering ska riffs with pieces of songs in the works or giving wayto punk ferocity, ending the set with a series of Bad Brains covers. Having played togethersince childhood, the guys improvised with ease. When they hit that groove, it didn t matterso much what Brad- a master of lyrical improvision- was saying, but what everyone wasfeeling. Those were the moments of bliss. When Brad would forget the lyrics, but thecrowd would fill in the gaps. When the set became an incomprehensible jam that wandereddown all of Sublimes streets. When you were aloud to do your thing- whatever it maybe.When nothing else mattered except the party around you. That s when you realized therewill never be a band as good as, as free or as welcoming as Sublime.


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