Big Light is an independent rock and roll band from San Francisco, California. Founded in 2007, the band originally consisted of Fred Torphy (songwriter, lead vocals, guitars), Jamie Fordyce (vocals, guitars, bass), Steve Adams (bass), Bradly Bifulco (drums), and Colin Hoops (keyboards). In addition to writing their own material, the band also covers songs by modern American songwriter, Nathan Moore. Fordyce departed in the summer of 2008 and was replaced by Dan Hurley (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals). Colin Hoops left the band in early 2009, he was replaced permanently by Jeremy "Swordfish" Korpas (guitars). Hurley helped out during this transition, but his last tour with the band was the "Piece Together Wings" tour in June/July 2009 with Nathan Moore. Fordyce and Hurley remain close friends with the band, and have occasionally made guest appearances at performances over the years.
Formation, evolution & recognition
As the story goes, Torphy was inspired by his generation’s current wave of great American rock groups like My Morning Jacket, The Slip, Dr. Dog and Wilco. Joining forces with drummer Bradly Bifulco, they set out to form a band that would follow in those footsteps. "We love to experiment and keep things as weird and interesting as possible, but it all needs to come back to serve the song," says Torphy.
On the strength of that vision, Torphy and Bifulco were able to recruit bass player Steve Adams, who added instant recognition and legitimacy to the early line-up. A fixture in the Bay Area music scene and founding member of pop/rock jam stars ALO, Adams was offered the opportunity to flex his rock & roll muscles in Big Light. "I’m definitely turning my amp up and using more fuzz" says Adams. "One thing I really love about Big Light is its true garage rock sound. It’s gritty in all the right ways."
Proving there’s little question that timing and luck can be a factor in success, Big Light became a beneficiary of both in 2008 when guitarist Jeremy Korpas needed a place to crash and landed on Torphy’s couch. A friend of a friend, Korpas did not join the band immediately. However, his first official show with the band on May 13, 2009 at San Francisco’s Make Out Room was a turning point, solidifying Big Light as it’s known today.
In the summer of 2009, Big Light, on tour with comrade Nathan Moore, formed a band with Moore called The Dun Four. The Dun Four (also known as Who's Dun Four?) has played sporadically over the years. The Dun Four's hallmark songs "One Beautiful Girl" & "Mañana" were recorded at Coyote Hearing Studios for a '7-inch release, but remain unreleased and only circulate the web as mp3's.
From 2007-2011 Big Light steadily climbed the S.F. club circuit, going from bar gigs like Bottom of the Hill to headlining The Independent to playing support at the legendary Fillmore; they have shared bills with Spoon, Broken Social Scene, The Mother Hips, Dead Confederate, Everest and Howlin Rain to name a few, and have toured throughout the United States, although their following remains strongest on the West and East coasts. A staple on the festival circuit as well, Big Light has performed at Outside Lands, Noise Pop, Wanderlust, the High Sierra Music Festival, and has appeared at SXSW (as an officially showcased band) in 2010 & 2011. The band has since become recognized by many of the Bay Area's leading musicians and music industry insiders as one of the most original and interesting acts to emerge from San Francisco in recent years.
The band went on hiatus in 2012. In March 2014 Adams, Torphy and Bifulco played a one-off set at a fundraiser held at Phil Lesh's club Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael, CA.
In the summer 2015 original members Torphy, Bifulco and Adams officially re-formed Big Light as a trio.
Fred Torphy - guitar/vocals
Bradly Bifulco - drums
Steve Adams - bass / vocals
Jeremy Korpas - guitar Marc Friedman - bass / production Jamie Fordyce - guitar / vocals Dan Hurley - keyboards / guitar / vocals Colin Hoops - keybpards Cochrane McMillan - drums /percussion
Their first recording, the seven-song self-titled EP, Big Light, was self-released in June 2008, and is distributed by reapandsow. Big Light released their first full-length LP Animals In Bloom through reapandsow on March 2, 2010. The band celebrated the occasion with a performance at The Independent in San Francisco on March 4, 2010. Big Light's second full-length LP, The Well Wishers, which was produced by Marc Friedman, was released digitally in August 2014.
Television and media
Big Light's song "Superfuzz Fine" appears in an episode of the 2ND season of the SyFy television show Eureka, a show members of the band have been long-time fans of. The song "Good Time of the Year" was used in a Google web advert for the Google Music service, garnering the band half a million streams of the track.