After three albums the great chamber-country outfit Scud Mountain Boys folded. After their demise, Joe Pernice, singer and songwriter of the band, formed the Pernice Brothers and recorded a pop-masterpiece called “Overcome By Happyness” which was released via Sub Pop (USA) and Rykodisc (Europe) to high critical acclaim. The end of `99 saw the release of the self-titled album by Chappaquiddick Skyline, which was recorded with Pernice Brothers members and Jolene´s John Crooke. The Pernice Brothers still exist and their second album is scheduled for early 2001.
Being avid Scud Mountain fans from (almost) day one we´ve been approached by Joe´s manager whether we´d be interested in releasing a Joe Pernice record with songs that were written for the fourth Scud album, but have yet to be recorded. Of course we said yes and what was supposed to be a quiet and acoustic solo-album turned into a full-fledged pop-masterpiece.
Here´s some explanatory words from the master himself about the creation of this recording:
“After four years and five albums with my old label, I decided it was definitely time for a change. You can fill in all the details surrounding the split, as many of the musician/record company struggle cliches apply. Rather than get bogged down in the negativity, I approached my co-control freak friend, Joyce Linehan, about starting a label together. If my memory serves me correctly, Ashmont Records was born over mediocre Chinese food in Braintree, Massachusetts.
Literally, the next day, I called Thom Monahan, producer of five of my six albums, and told him I wanted to make this record, Big Tobacco, asap. When he stopped laughing, he said, "let's do it." We excitedly kicked around ideas, at which point I slipped into the conversation the fact that there was just about no money involved, which was more than he had anticipated. God love him. He unwittingly paraphrased a famous pedophile whe he said bands are like .......