The BoDeans are a rock and roll and roots rock band formed in Waukesha, Wisconsin in 1983 by Kurt Neumann (vocals & electric guitar) and Sam Llanas (vocals & acoustic guitar). In 1985, after adding a drummer and a bassist, the band signed a contract with Slash/Warner Records and recorded their first album. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the band had several singles in the top 40 "mainstream rock" charts. In the mid-1990s, the band had two top 10 songs in the "Adult contemporary" charts.
In January 1987, a Rolling Stone reader poll voted them Best New American Band. Their second album, Outside Looking In, was released that year. Followed by that were Home (1989), Black and White (1991), and Go Slow Down (1993).
Their 1993 song "Closer to Free" brought them to a much larger audience after it was selected as the theme song to the TV series Party of Five. The band would return in 1999 to perform a cover of The Beatles's "I've Just Seen a Face" as the theme song for the show's short-lived spinoff Time of Your Life. Due to the newfound exposure, "Closer to Free" became the group's biggest pop hit, peaking at #16 on the U.S. Hot 100, three years after its release.
"Closer to Free" was also the opening song used in the movie Heavyweights. In 1995, Joe Dirt Car, a 2 CD live set, was released followed by the 1996 album, "Blend." The band took some time off in the late 1990s so Neumann and Llanas could record solo albums. Sammy created the band Absinthe and their album A Good Day To Die. Kurt released his solo album called Shy Dog on which he plays all the instruments. Neumann said that they decided to stick with the BoDeans because they "realized that the sound we made together was bigger than the sound we made apart."
In 2001 the 17-song compilation The Best Of BoDeans - Slash and Burn was released on London/Slash/Rhino. In 2004 they returned with new songs on Resolution released on Rounder/Zoe. A live album was released in 2005, entitled Homebrewed: Live from the Pabst. The group released the DVD for Homebrewed: Live from the Pabst at the end of 2005. In January 2006, Bob Griffin left the band for personal reasons. Efforts for the band to leave Warner created a three year long court battle, during which time they took a hiatus from the studio.
The Bodeans released their new album, entitled "Still", on March 4, 2008. The song "Pretty Ghost" from the new album "Still," became a single as of February 12, 2008. It has been announced that the band is lining up tour dates, along with a radio tour, and will be posted on their official website, as well as the band's MySpace page when they are all confirmed. The band recently appeared on the Minneapolis/St. Paul-area radio station Cities 97's "Studio C" program, and Artist Interviews podcast. They confirmed some tour dates ithe podcast, and played three songs, "Good Things," and two new songs, "Round Here Somewhere," and "Hearing." They were also interviewed, and had a Q&A about the new album.
It was stated that the first 15,000 copies of "Still" had some errors in the lyrics booklet. The record company recently re-released the album with the corrections in the booklet. The first edition copy is now considered rare.
|US Hot 100||US Modern Rock||US Mainstream Rock||US Adult Top 40||US Top 40 Mainstream|
|1987||"Only Love"||-||-||#16||-||-||Outside Looking In|
|1988||"Dreams"||-||-||#32||-||-||Outside Looking In|
|1989||"You Don't Get Much"||-||#15||#20||-||-||Home|
|1991||"Black, White, and Blood Red"||-||-||#34||-||-||Black and White|
|1993||"Feed the Fire"||-||-||#34||-||-||Go Slow Down|
|1996||"Closer to Free"||#16||-||-||#3||#6||Go Slow Down|
|1996||"Hurt By Love"||-||-||-||#33||#39||Blend|