10,000 Maniacs

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10,000 Maniacs

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One of the key Adult Alternative bands of the early '90s were 10,000 Maniacs, named after the low-budget horror movie 2,000 Maniacs, was formed in Jamestown, New York, in 1981 by singer Natalie Merchant and guitarist John Lombardo. Other members of the sextet were Robert Buck (guitar), Steven Gustafson (bass), Dennis Drew (keyboards), and Jerry Augustyniak (drums).
Writing and performing powerful, danceable and socially conscious original material in and around their hometown of Jamestown, New York the group toured extensively and produced two independently released records, Human Conflict Number Five (’82) and Secrets of the I Ching (’83) on their own Christian Burial Music label. Led by the gifted vocalist Natalie Merchant, they were Alternative Rock darlings until their single "Like the Weather" crossed them over to just about all radio formats. In My Tribe and Blind Man's Zoo went on to become staples in college dorms, womyn's clinics and bead shops everywhere. Then, at the height of their popularity, Merchant went solo to become, as the New Yorker puts it, the Stevie Nicks of the '90s. While Merchant continues to sell like Fleetwood Mac, 10,000 Maniacs have carried on to less commercial acclaim. With Mary Ramsey taking the lead vocal spot, their new, even folkier incarnation has its own rewards.
10,000 Maniacs remained a staple on the folk-rock circuit right into the new decade, and in 2011 they released their first new recording in ten years: an EP called Triangles. That year, the group also played two 30th anniversary concerts in their hometown of Jamestown, New York, then set out to record a new album in 2012. The resulting Music from the Motion Picture - the first new 10,000 Maniacs album in 14 years - appeared in February 2013.