Fuse was an American rock band formed in Rockford, Illinois, in 1967, after Rick Nielsen proposed the merging of two local bands: The Grim Reapers (Rick Nielsen and Joe Sundberg) and Toast and Jam (Chip Greenman, Craig Myers, and Tom Peterson later known as Tom Petersson). Managed by Ken Adamany, Fuse's line-up consisted of Rick Nielsen (keyboards/guitar), Joe Sundberg (vocals), Tom Peterson (bass guitar), Craig Myers (lead guitar), and Chip Greenman (drums/percussion).
A single was recorded for Smack Records, including the tunes "Hound Dog" and "Crusin for Burgers". In 1969, the band played in Chicago and was signed by Epic Records. Epic executives rushed the band into Columbia Studios in the fall and, in a matter of a few weeks, the album Fuse was recorded, which was released early 1970 (re-released in 2001). It remains their only album, though a bootleg disc, Retrospective Foresight, was released some time later.
Frustrated by their lack of success, Fuse recruited the two remaining members of Nazz (Thom Mooney and Robert "Stewkey" Antoni) in 1970 in place of Sundberg and Greenman, and ended up playing around the Midwest for six or seven months under two monikers, Fuse or Nazz, depending on where they were gigging. With Brad Carlson later known as Bun E. Carlos replacing Mooney on drums, Fuse moved to Philadelphia in 1971 and began calling themselves 'Sick Man of Europe'. After a European tour in 1973, Nielsen, Petersson and Carlos formed Cheap Trick with Randy Hogan.
Nielsen has nothing but good to say about the Fuse album:
|“||Tom Petersson and I were in a Midwest band called Fuse. The guys we were with were all superior musicians; they’re probably in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame now. Tom and I had the stick-to-it-iveness and positive thinking to know what we wanted to do, so we split the band and went off to hang out in England... That Fuse stuff was my finest work. We stand by it and wished Cheap Trick played that well!||”|
By Petersson’s account:
|“||The band was much better than the album indicates. When it came out we were disgusted. The producer was an idiot.||”|
- Chip Greenman's website
- Cheap Trick: Smart, Sleek and Debonair; Ira Robbins, Trouser Press, February 1978.