Friday, April 27, 2007


Sublime was an American band from Long Beach, California. The band's music combined a mix of dub, punk, funk, reggae and hip hop. Sublime consisted of three members: Brad Nowell (vocals and guitar), Bud Gaugh (drums), and Eric Wilson (bass guitar). The band achieved major mainstream success with their self-titled third album; however, Nowell died of a heroin overdose shortly before it was released and the band broke up soon after. The band is still considered quite influential today. Worldwide, Sublime has sold 8 million albums.

Sublime began in 1988 in Long Beach, California as a Reggae/Rock/Punk band, Sublime grew to fame in the mid-'90s. They combined such genres as reggae, punk, and rap. The band released just two albums during its first seven years. Lead singer Brad Nowell died in May 1996, just two months before the release of their self-titled third record, which became a hugely successful release based on the single 'What I Got'.

Vocalist/guitarist Bradley Nowell, R.I.P, bassist Eric Wilson, and drummer Bud Gaugh played their first gig on the 4th of July 1988 at a small Long Beach club. The group began aggressively touring around the area with an increasingly substantial following, especially among the surf/skate beach crowd. After four years of concentrating strictly on live shows, Sublime's first album 40 Oz. to Freedom was recorded in 1992. The LP was released on Skunk Records -- the label formed by Nowell and Sublime manager Miguel -- and sold at shows, but it really started to break when KROQ began playing the single "Date Rape" two years after its initial release.

Mostly due to this radio exposure, Sublime signed to MCA for 1994's Robbin' the Hood, which revealed an experimental ethic more in keeping with cut-and-paste dub than the well-tuned rage of the Cali punk revival. The album performed well on college radio and set the stage for the breakout success of their third album, "Sublime". On May 25, 1996, however, Nowell was found in a San Francisco hotel room, dead of a heroin overdose. This came seven days after his wedding to Troy Denkker, who'd given birth to their son, Jakob. The band collapsed, but the album was still slated for a July release, so the obviously inappropriate "Killin' It" title was dropped and it was released as a self-titled album. On the strength of the alternative radio hit "What I Got," the album was certified gold by the end of 1996. A number of posthumous releases followed, among them 1997's Second-Hand Smoke, 1998's Stand by Your Van, and Sublime Acoustic: Bradley Nowell & Friends. A 3-CD/1-DVD box set of demos, rarities, and live recording, called Everything Under the Sun, was released on November 14, 2006. The music of Sublime is still being carried on by tribute bands such as "Wrong Way", "Sublemon" and "Badfish".

Following Sublime's demise, its surviving members, Eric Wilson and Bud Gaugh, began a new band under the name "Long Beach Dub Allstars." This new band also included many frequent contributors to Sublime, including Michael "Miguel" Happoldt, Todd Foreman, and "Field" Marshall Goodman.


RIP Bradley. . .


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