Monday, March 29, 2010

Grand Atlantic covers Alex Chilton's "September Gurls," Just Months Before His Death

While many are or have, Grand Atlantic is certainly not jumping on any sort of bandwagon to tribute iconic pop singer/songwriter Alex Chilton. Eerily enough, roughly two months before Chilton's death, Grand Atlantic had recorded one of Big Star's most memorable "hit" songs "September Gurls."

When Chilton's sudden passing on March 17 came to press, many of his biggest fans and followers were at SXSW in Austin, Texas. If they weren't planning to attend the SXSW-scheduled show of Big Star on Saturday, March 20, it was only because the fans themselves were probably playing in their own band, influenced by this seminal power-pop group. It was a shock heard around the indie rock world, one that still stuns us today.

Grand Atlantic singer/guitarist Phil Usher was one of those people. An honor of Chilton's past work both in Big Star and The Box Tops, and eerily enough, just about two months before Chilton died, Grand Atlantic recorded a cover of Big Star's understated and powerful love song "September Gurls." We get chills as we tell you this.

After SXSW and Chilton's passing, we asked Usher to tell us about his personal experiences with the music of Alex Chilton.

"The music of The Box Tops and Big Star have resonated with me in a unique way. I am a sucker for great rock n roll with inspiring melodies and Alex had it pulsing through his veins. I actually discovered Big Star through the recommendation of friends, after they mentioned that they thought my music reminded me of the band. I have always been a big Teenage Fanclub fan and have now realized what a huge impact Alex had on their music as well. I had hoped to catch him perform at SXSW along with many others, but unfortunately it was not to be. As with many great artists, he may have been under-appreciated and under-rated during his time here, but his music will live on and continue to inspire and encourage others like myself. I feel so fortunate to have found his music and feel as if the musical landscape would not be the same without Mr. Chilton. Rest easy Alex."

Take a breath, close your eyes and listen to Grand Atlantic's stunning version of "September Gurls."

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