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Big Star

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Big Star: The Best of Big Star

Review by Paul Lester, Uncut, January 2000

Fourteen cuts from troubled pop-rack demigods' first two LPs, remastered, at mid-price ...

Audio interviews

Jim Dickinson on Big Star (1999)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1999

The legendary Memphis musician and producer looks back at the making of Big Star's Third/Sister Lovers. It's all here: the characters and the chaos, the fun and the frustrations. Great story-telling.

File format: mp3; file size: 56.3mb, interview length: 58' 38" sound quality: * (phoner)

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Big Star: No. 1 Record (Ardent 2803)

Review by Jon Tiven, Fusion, December 1972

THIS IS certainly one of the most novel and incredible albums released this year, possessing chameleon quality only hinted at by Raspberries. Believe me, brothers ...

Big Star: No.1 Record

Review by Bud Scoppa, Rolling Stone, 1 February 1973

In the late Sixties, a Memphis teenager named Alex Chilton won moderate fame and fortune as the lead singer for a sometimes inspired, sometimes insipid ...

Big Star: At Overton Square, Memphis

Live Review by Metal Mike Saunders, Phonograph Record, July 1973

THIS REVIEW is primarily about Alex Chilton, formerly of the Box Tops and presently with Big Star. The occasions are few and far between that ...

Big Star Biography

Press Release by uncredited writer, Ardent Records, February 1974

IN SEPTEMBER, 1972 Ardent Records released Big Star's first album, Number One Record. The group consisted of Alex Chilton – guitar, keyboards, and vocals, Chris ...

Big Star: Radio City (Ardent)

Review by Jon Tiven, Zoo World, 28 February 1974

ONLY JANUARY, and already the Album of the Year is upon us. Big Star's Radio City is most assuredly the finest American record since Bob ...

Big Star: Radio City

Review by Bud Scoppa, Phonograph Record, March 1974

I HAVEN'T HEARD many albums in the last two years that I like as much as Big Star's first, Number One Record. Responsible for the ...

Big Star: Radio City Comes to NYC

Live Review by Jon Tiven, Fusion, March 1974

BIG STAR IS America's premier rock band, hands down – they'll no longer be forced into comparisons with Raspberries, Stories, Blue Ash, or any of ...

Big Star: Radio City (Ardent)

Review by Gary Sperrazza!, Shakin' Street Gazette, 14 March 1974

OK, HERE'S THE STORY: Alex Chilton, fresh from his Memphis residence with the Boxtops ('The Letter', 'Cry Like A Baby', 'Sweet Cream Ladies') heads to ...

Big Star: Radio City (Ardent ADS-1501)

Review by Ken Barnes, Rolling Stone, 11 April 1974

BIG STAR proved themselves one of the leading new American bands working in the mid-Sixties pop and rock vein with the release of their debut ...

Big Star: No Glam, Just Rock and Ram

Profile and Interview by Jon Tiven, Circus, May 1974

WITHOUT EVEN an ounce of glitter in their cosmetic kit, Big Star is a band that's making it without devices or gimmicks, unless you call ...

Big Star: 'September Gurls' (Privilege 1002)

Review by Marty Cerf, Phonograph Record, November 1974

Alex Chilton & Big Star: Innocent, But Deadly ...

Big Star: Big Star Burns Real Slow

Overview by Max Bell, New Musical Express, 6 August 1977

For almost ten years now, Alex Chilton has resolutely resisted successive attempts by the rock press to deify him. ...

The Big Star Story, Take 4

Retrospective by Max Bell, New Musical Express, 15 July 1978

THE BIG STAR story seems to have taken up a considerable part of my writing life. This is the fourth time in three years that ...

Big Star: Third (PVC 7903)

Review by Jim Green, Trouser Press, January 1979

AT LAST, THE third chapter of the Big Star story comes to light. In fact, it comes in two editions, US and UK, but for ...

Big Star: Third (PVC)

Review by Robot A. Hull, Creem, April 1979

GROWING UP IN Memphis back in '67, I used to get tired of hearing the Box Top's ‘The Letter’ (#1 hit in the world that ...

Alex Chilton: Alex's Wild Years

Interview by Martin Aston, Melody Maker, 2 November 1985

If anybody can really claim to be a living legend, ALEX CHILTON is the guy. From the Box Tops to Big Star to the booze, ...

Big Star: Big Star Live

Sleeve notes by Robert Gordon, Rykodisc, February 1992

WINDING DOWN a recent set, Alex Chilton asked, "Anything else anyone needs done for them?" That menacing kindness goes a long way toward explaining the ...

Big Star: Live; Third/Sister Lovers; Chris Bell: I Am The Cosmos (All Rykodisc)

Review by Edwin Pouncey, New Musical Express, 29 February 1992

SINCE THEY faded into obscurity in 1975, shortly after recording the sessions for the Third/Sister Lovers LP, Memphis pop/rock band Big Star have been lauded ...

Alex Chilton and Big Star

Interview by Martin Aston, OOR, Fall 1992

BIG STAR, that most famous of cult guitar bands, named themselves after a chain of supermarkets renowned in their local Memphis; now, nearly 15 years ...

Big Star: 'Whatever Was There, I Drank It Or Took It...'

Interview by Paul Lester, Melody Maker, 21 August 1993

...So says Alex Chilton, inspirational genius behind Seventies legends BIG STAR, whose brief but influential career embraced three classic albums and more drugs, booze and ...

Big Star: The Grand, London

Live Review by Tom Hibbert, MOJO, November 1993

AT THE BACK OF the hall stood a tall and bulky figure, taking light refreshment and delivering his expert verdict on the performance of the ...

Robert Gordon: It Came From Memphis (Secker & Warburg)

Book Review by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, October 1995

"WE HAD poetic furor," says Memphis scenester Randall Lyon, a key figure in Robert Gordon's new book about the music of his home town. "I ...

From Memphis to Columbia: An Interview With Jody Stephens of Big Star

Interview by Robin Platts, DISCoveries, January 1996

WHEN BIG STAR released their first record in 1972, it might have seemed that they were behind the times. Like Badfinger and the Raspberries, they ...

Jody Stephens: "What A Thing To Do..."

Interview by Joss Hutton, Bucketfull of Brains, 1997

Joss Hutton talks to Big Star's sticks-master, the urbane Jody Stephens (with assistance from Nick West, vitamin C, caffeine and Nurofen). ...

Invisible Jukebox: Spiritualized

Interview by Mike Barnes, The Wire, July 1998

Every month we play a musician a series of records which they're asked to identify and comment on — with no prior knowledge of what ...

The Man Who Preferred Not To: Alex Chilton

Retrospective by Barney Hoskyns, Dig, The (Japan), November 1999

IF EVERYONE who heard the Velvet Underground in the ’60s formed a band – so the joke goes – then everyone who heard Big Star ...

Stars In Their Eyes: Big Star

Retrospective by Bud Scoppa, unpublished, 2000

NOTE: I was assigned this piece the spring of 2000 by Revolver, but the mag was recast as a metal monthly while I was working ...

Wayward Sons: The Ballad of Big Star

Retrospective and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, February 2000

THE SUN IS going down on Memphis, site of rock’n’roll’s immaculate conception and explosive birth. On a warm spring evening, the Mississippi’s purplish-brown waters are ...

Big Star, Posies, Arnold: Mean Fiddler, London

Live Review by Josh Rinkoff, Rock's Backpages, 25 August 2001

A GOOD FRIEND OF MINE told me about an amazing group called Big Star. He said I should go out and buy a copy of ...

Jim Dickinson: Home Cooking

Interview by Joss Hutton, Perfect Sound Forever, January 2002

THIS MAIN COURSE is a hearty southern dish, marinated in worldly wisdom and good humour, matured slowly in honky-tonks, recording studios and bars the world ...

What Makes Great Rock 'N' Roll Great, Part Two

Comment by Michael Goldberg, Neumu, 16 March 2002

Sometimes great rock 'n' roll is simply pure pleasure. Like sex, only without the complications ...

Big Star: Big Star Story (Rykodisc)

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Uncut, November 2003

Mildly unsatisfactory smattering of tracks by genius Memphis quartet/trio – the acme of twisted '70s power pop. ...

Chris Bell: Waltz Across Memphis

Retrospective by Mark Rozzo, Oxford American, Summer 2003

IN MAY OF 1978, the first Big Star pilgrimage took place. Driving out from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, via Interstate 40, three guys obsessed with ...

The Glory and Grandeur That Is Defeat: The Music of Alex Chilton

Special Feature by Michael Baker, Perfect Sound Forever, July 2004

I. Entrance: On the Slopes of Parnassus ...

The Glory and Grandeur That Is Defeat: The Music of Alex Chilton, Part 2

Retrospective by Michael Baker, Perfect Sound Forever, July 2004

IF THE FIRST ALBUM is soulful and unconscious, the second develops a narrator and player who find new voices, taking on consciousness, memory, and loss. ...

Big Star: In Space

Review by Terry Staunton, Record Collector, October 2005

WITNESSES TO BIG STAR'S comeback shows in 1993 would often find themselves shoulder-to-shoulder with sundry teary-eyed power poppers whose own bands owed a huge debt ...

Big Star: Star Power

Profile and Interview by Fred Mills, Harp, November 2005

MEMPHIS, TENN., April 2004: Inside Ardent Studios a band assembles in the control room, where the engineer has just cued up a playback. It's a ...

"It Isn't Even a Record": Big Star's 'Stroke It, Noel' and Sister Lovers

Retrospective and Interview by Mark Rozzo, Oxford American, 2006

ONE CHILL November evening several years ago, I found myself camped around a driftwood fire on the banks of the Mississippi River in Memphis, watching ...

Great Lig in the Sky: The 1973 Rock Writers Convention

Retrospective and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages, June 2006

ON MEMORIAL DAY weekend in May 1973, over a hundred of the leading rock writers of the day flew into Memphis, Tennessee, for 72 hours ...

40 Years of Ardent

Retrospective and Interview by Andria Lisle, Memphis Flyer, 26 October 2006

The little recording studio on Madison has played a big part in Memphis music history. ...

Big Stars In Their Eyes

Retrospective by Bud Scoppa, Rock's Backpages, May 2009

Note: I was assigned this piece in the Spring of 2000 by Revolver, but the mag was recast as a metal monthly while I was ...

Big Star Boxed Up

Report and Interview by Andria Lisle, Memphis Flyer, 10 September 2009

Big Star is celebrated with a lavish musical "scrapbook." ...

Behind the Scenes of the Big Star Box Set

Report and Interview by Andria Lisle, Memphis Flyer, 15 September 2009

DURING HIS seven-year career at Ardent Studios, 34-year old engineer Adam Hill has worked with the White Stripes, Cat Power, George Thorogood, Montgomery Gentry and the Raconteurs. One ...

Alex Chilton: Out Of Time

Retrospective and Interview by Martin Aston, MOJO, November 2009

A Beatles-obsessed quartet of '70s Memphis kids offering power-pop acid-drops for a soul label and a heavy rock public, Big Star were the ultimate misfit ...

Big Star Third at London's Barbican

Live Review by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages, 29 May 2012

I WENT TO LONDON'S BARBICAN last night, fully prepared to be underwhelmed and unsatisfied: so many of these album recreations are too ramshackle for their ...

Holly George-Warren's Alex Chilton

Memoir by Binky Philips, Huffington Post, 11 April 2014

When I was running the East Village record store, St Mark's Sounds in the 1980s, Alex Chilton's LP Like Flies On Sherbert [sic] was a ...

Go All The Way: A Thing Called Power Pop

Overview by Dave Laing (Australia), I Like Your Old Stuff, 25 March 2017

"Pete Townshend coined the phrase [power pop] to define what the Who did. For some reason, it didn't stick to the Who, but it did ...

see also Chris Bell

see also Alex Chilton

see also Jim Dickinson


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