The 90’s were a truly great time for music. I consider myself lucky to have gone to college in the early 90’s, and DJ at the University of Georgia’s college radio station, WUOG. I was exposed to so much music there. In high school I religiously watched a show on MTV called 120 Minutes, which turned me on to so much great music too. Here are some great bands I love from that era, that you may have missed.
Before Juliana Hatfield made it big time as a solo artist, she was in Blake Babies. The guitar hook on this song is stunning.
A band I discovered from 120 Minutes. What a great show that was. I loved how Walt Mink fused progressive rock and virtuosity into tight 3 minute songs. Drummer Joey Waronker went on to be a mainstay in Beck’s band.
A band I discovered from rotation at WUOG. Mack Avenue Skullgame was a theme record from Ann Arbor’s Big Chief, made as a soundtrack to a movie which didn’t exist. This record covered everything from funk, blues to rock.
This band may not be as obscure as some of these other bands listed. Also a find from 120 Minutes, my first garage band covered the Guru’s songs often. Hoodoo Gurus wrote tight pop/rock songs with great hooks and a lot of tongue in cheek humor.
The Ocean Blue
The Ocean Blue dominated the alternative rock scene in the 90’s with several solid records. The bridge on this song, it’s resplendent. The guitar solo on this tune is excellent. What I love is that it’s a song about how art can provoke awe inspiring feelings and contemplative questions.
Another 120 Minutes find. Chris Cornell produced this record for fellow Seattleites. I remember hearing this song and loving it immediately for the reverb on Mark Lanegan’s vocals.
It’s ridiculous how good these guys were. Did you watch the video? I implore you! I beseech you! Watch that video! That is live! Amazing. I remember people were surprised these guys were white because they were so funky. Got to see them at the Cotton Club back when it was on Peachtree. These guys should’ve been huge.
I think my brother introduced me to Versus. He and I got to see them several times during the 90’s. Two Cents Plus Tax was my favorite record from this NYC rock band.
Another discovery from WUOG rotation. It took me an hour to remember this band’s name the other day. This song rocks so much.
TPOH or The Pursuit of Happiness
This Canadian band had a hit with the song, “I’m An Adult Now,” which played on my hometown radio station. I’ll never forget seeing them down on River Street on St. Patrick’s Day in 1989. They blew me away. Their stellar 1993 release, The Downward Road, was a favorite of mine and many of my friends. It rocks from top to bottom. Then Beavis & Butthead featured this song in a show and TPOH got big for a minute. Unfortunately that small moment was the biggest they’d get.
Do you remember any of these bands? What are some other obscure 90’s bands you liked?