There was a "Band in a Hat" drawing (where people put their names in a hat and someone draws out names in groups of four and...voila, you have a band) and fate put Marilyn and I in a band together with a friend named "Myke with a Y" (our 4th guy showed up once with no equipment, watched us silently and left....we never heard from him again). Marilyn had only played solo before and this was her first band. She brought a few songs to practice that were simple and catchy. Myke wanted to play the state anthem of Indiana for some reason. I came up with a hundred or so band names by thumbing through the dictionary and grouping two random words together without looking at them first...like "Stopped Venue", "Burning Month" or "Nothing Clubs". I read the list aloud to Marilyn and "Quadrillion Babes" made her laugh the hardest, so we agreed that it should be the name of the band. After the Band in a Hat show, Myke left the country, my friendship with Marilyn solidified and we decided to keep playing music together.
QUADRILLION BABES at Guilty Pleasures "Band in a Hat" show. Photo by Ginger Alford.
Our friend, Leah played bass with us for the equivalent of about 5 and a half minutes. We decided to ask our friend, Chiara to play bass, even though she had two children, school and artistic commitments. She was stoked to do it and we continued on until I moved away to San Francisco.
JRD recorded this tape in his basement on a four-track and I feel like we did the whole thing in 2-3 hours...maybe less. Chiara and I kept foolishly convincing Marilyn to leave in any screw-ups because it would make it more interesting. JRD laughed at us..or with us....take your pick. (by the way, you can also record with him in Bloomington at Vegas Hotel.). It sounds a little rushed and flubbed, but that's our fault. We were having a lot of fun and that's the important part.
QUADRILLION BABES at Sweet Hickory in Bloomington. Photo by Joe McCann
Like I said, I moved away to SF and I'm still there. I do this writing and I play in NEON PISS. I'm also a social worker, but this is about music, I think. Chiara ended up in Chicago, working on her art and great writing about disabilities, sickness and life.. She also wants to play music, so if you're looking to start an awesome band in Chicago and you need a bass player, get in touch with her. She's a lot of fun to play music with. Marilyn started a band called AYE NAKO while she was still in Bloomington and they were much better than QUADRILLION BABES. Then, she moved out to Oakland and played in FLEABAG (with Joe from AYE NAKO) and DIRTY MARQUEE (with me, again). Not content to stay in one place, she moved again to Brooklyn (and now goes by Mars) and started a new version of AYE NAKO (with Joe again!) that rules harder than everything she's done musically thus far. I'm proud and honored to have played in this short-lived band with these two great people.
More live photos by Joe. Thanks!
Chiara with a very large cat. Bad kitty.