His Band Opened For Badfinger: A Q&A with Big Star’s Jody Stephens

Hard as it is to believe, the lone surviving member of power-pop legends Big Star, original drummer Jody Stephens, is in town tonight at the Brighton Music Hall in Boston for a “Boston Tribute To Alex Chilton.” The evening includes performances by Sister Lovers, an actual Big Star tribute band, and guest vocalists ranging from Christian McNeil, Dennis Brennan, Ruby Rose Fox, and Will Dailey, among others, as well as veteran “Rolling Stone” music journalist and author Holly George-Warren, who will read passages from her new book on Chilton entitled, “A Man Called Destruction.” (go here for tix: http://bit.ly/1IGcl4d). Some years ago, I had the opportunity to interview both the man of the hour himself as well as Stephens when the latter was touring with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, the Jayhawks’ Gary Louris and the rest of the alt-country super-group, Golden Smog. Of course, we chatted a bit about his first band and its profound influence on the dudes in the Smog. He was supremely modest, as usual. All these years later, Jody remains one of the most genuinely nice, forthcoming guys you could ever hope to talk to. Here’s the bulk of my Q&A with him for Rolling Stone. There are also several other Big Star-related links and pieces for those of us who, as the Replacements’ Paul Westerberg once sang, “never travel far without a little Big Star.” Please feel free to share with the Big Star fan(s) in your life!

RPM: Jonathan Perry's Life in Analog

Photo session, presumably for "#1 Record." Also used as the cover photo for the wonderful Rhino box set, "Keep An Eye On The Sky." L-R: Andy Hummel, Jody Stephens, Chris Bell, Alex Chilton. Photo session, presumably for “#1 Record.” Also used as the cover photo for the wonderful Rhino box set, “Keep An Eye On The Sky.” L-R: Andy Hummel, Jody Stephens, Chris Bell, Alex Chilton.

Big Star on stage at Hyde Park, London, UK Big Star on stage at Hyde Park, London, UK (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Q&A with Jody Stephens/Rolling Stone.com

Even if Jody Stephens had never picked up a pair of drumsticks after 1974, he’d still have secured an immortal place in pop history as the drummer for Big Star — one of the most talked about and belatedly beloved American rock & roll bands ever. And although they didn’t sell squat in their day, just about every self-respecting rocker with good taste — from Michael Stipe to Paul Westerberg to Matthew Sweet to Greg Dulli to, hell, *everybody* — has genuflected in front of Big Star’s three studio albums, rightfully regarding them as the awe-inspiring Holy Grails of  power-pop that they are…

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  1. […] via His Band Opened For Badfinger: A Q&A with Big Star’s Jody Stephens. […]

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