Island (UK) / Warner Bros. (US)
Produced by Chris Blackwell
Released 6th July 1979
US Chart #59
UK Chart #22
I have to confess that I never tire of listening to the Debut Album from The B-52's. I posted this in part of my Best Debut Albums Series (a series that I must get back to at some point in time) last year and can't help but post on it again this year.
It's hard to believe that the album is 37 years old today. It is one of my most played albums (easily in the 900's now!). It's a record that to me is a real feelgood album and one that seems perfectly made for summer.
Rock Lobster (Long Version Live)
There's only 9 songs on the Debut Album of The B-52's and in just under 40 minutes you get to learn all you need to know about the Athens, Georgia natives. They clearly show that they are a fun band, with lots of quirkiness and a passion for combining the music of the sixties and the sound of surf with a passionate alternative sound for the late seventies. There wasn't any band around musically like them, maybe Devo shared their quirky nature but that was about it.
They were different in everyway possible when they came out and I guess that's what made them standout. They were formed in 1976 by Cindy Wilson and her older brother Ricky on guitar and added Kate Pierson (organ and vocals), Keith Strickland on drums and Poet, Cowbell Player, and Vocalist Fred Schneider. Their first coming together being a jam session at a Chinese Restaurant in Athens - sounds perfectly suited to them! Their first proper show as a band was Valentine's Day Party in 1977 for friends (Cindy Wilson played guitar).
In 1978 they recorded and released Rock Lobster/52 Girls on the DB Label and reportedly sold 20,000 copies of it! This no doubt endeared them to record companies with Island Records winning the day (in the US they signed with Warner Bros.)
Rock Lobster was issued again by Island and featured an instrumental of Runnin' Around on the B-Side (Warner Bros. had 6060-842 as the B-Side). It did chart in the UK at #37 and in the US at #56. When it was re-issued in 1986 (with Planet Claire on the B-Side) it actually went higher peaking at #12.
Surprisingly Planet Claire didn't make the chart which is a shame because it's a magnificent single.
Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!: Day