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Article - "The Good, The Bad And The Ugly"

This article was taken of the Tooth and Nail website.

In the spring of 1994 we were receiving regular airplay on WKDU, the radio station of Pennsylvania's own Drexel University. The station's playlist made it's way to the now defunct REX Records. An REX employee found the playlist and contacted us through the deejay who had been playing our song. We were asked to send in a demo of our material for label consideration. Several months after sending in the demo we received a call from the same REX employee who was now leaving REX to begin his own record label. He wanted us to sign with his new label and on September 10, 1994 we became the first band to sign with Flying Tart Records.

We were to begin recording our first album in early 1995. Several huge blunders by the label prevented us from recording then and we were told that we would record soon. It would be another year before we would finally be allowed to record our album. We recorded Sweet Sixteen in February 1996 and saw its release in June of the same year. While this album doesn't sound very good and, in fact, never even got mastered (the final EQing and volume setting stage of album production) it served its purpose well, that of simple introduction. We played several large music festivals that year as well as our normal share of local gigs. We also began writing for our next record.

It was about this time that we got the idea of recording a complete album of covers by our favorite band, the Ramones. We had only spent $650 recording Sweet Sixteen and figured we could record our favorite Ramones songs for even less. We were right. We went into the studio and 15 hours later we were done. Our label didn't want to put it out, so we decided to do it ourselves. Our deejay friend, who had helped us get signed, had some money he didn't know what to do with so we asked him for the funding. He agreed and a few months later we had our little Ramones cover record. We called this album Rocket To Ramonia and put the label name as Lying Fart Records (an obvious jab at our real label). This record is limited to 1000 cd only copies.

In the Fall of 1996 I was given the phone number of the man I consider to be my all-time favorite producer. His name is Mass Giorgini. He's recorded albums by Screeching Weasel, The Queers, Riverdales, and many others. For several years I had daydreamed about his name appearing on an album of mine someday. Now I had his number and I was gonna use it. I called the number and was surprised to find myself talking to him. He asked me a few questions (namely, who are you?) and told me that anyone could buy time at his studio but that he wouldn't directly work on it unless he liked our material. I sent him Sweet Sixteen and Rocket To Ramonia and called him again a few weeks later. He said that he liked our songs and would help us record something that actually sounded good. The Huntingtons would be given 10 days of Mass' time in the latter half of January 1997.

Getting the label to agree to the expense involved was no easy task as they were still a little sore over our using a parody of their name for the Rocket To Ramonia record. In addition the label had recently been sold to a large corporation and was unsure of getting the go ahead of such expense for such a relatively unknown band. Now I must say that the expense I'm talking about here is really not that much when compared to most records in America, but it was a pretty big jump from the cost of our previous record they had put out. After about a month or so they agreed and we began preparations for the recording.

As stated before we had 10 days in the studio with Mass Giorgini and we used every bit of it. It actually turned out to not be enough time and we had to sacrifice backing vocals on three songs. Still, we had made the album we wanted to make. We decided to call the album Fun And Games and saw its release in July of 1997. A cd-single was also released at the same time. It is called The Only One and includes three songs from the Mass Giorgini sessions but not included on the album.

After recording the album we decided to add an additional guitarist to the band. While playing the Cornerstone festival the previous summer we met a kid by the name of Brad who had hung out with us during the festival and had given us a demo tape of a band he was in. We called him up to talk about the possibility of him joining our band. He mentioned his band was breaking up and he would be ready to move to Delaware in a few weeks (no easy task as Brad is from Illinois, quite a huge distance from Delaware). On February 23, 1997 Brad became an official member of the Huntingtons.

After the release of Fun And Games in July we again played the music festivals. We also made plans for our first ever tour. The tour would be a month long covering the midwest and the south. The tour got booked and off we went driving through the country the entire month of September 1997. It was a highly successful tour. This actually surprised us since we had heard many horror stories from other bands we knew who had tried to tour. We came home from tour to find out that our label was being shut down by the corporation who had bought it. We signed with Tooth And Nail Records in November 1997.

December came and off we went again. Back to work with Mass Giorgini for the second time, which would be our fourth full length album. We recorded the album in 15 days. It will be called High School Rock and will be released May 12, 1998 on Tooth And Nail Records. Look for it.

-Cliffy Huntington