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Luscious Jackson in 2014
|Origin||Manhattan, New York, USA|
|Genres||Alternative rock, alternative hip hop, indie rock|
|Years active||1991–2000, 2011–present|
|Labels||Grand Royal, Capitol|
|Past members||Vivian Trimble|
The original band consisted of Jill Cunniff (vocals, bass), Gabby Glaser (vocals, guitar), and Vivian Trimble (keyboards, vocals). Drummer Kate Schellenbach joined the band midway through recording of their debut EP In Search of Manny.
Between 1993 and 2000, they released one EP, three full-length LPs, and ten singles on the Beastie Boys' Grand Royal label. Their biggest hit—and only Billboard Hot 100 entry— was "Naked Eye" (March 22, 1997). Other singles include "Here," "Daughters Of The Kaos", "Citysong", "Under Your Skin" and "Ladyfingers".
Keyboardist Vivian Trimble left the group in 1998, and in 2000 the group announced their breakup, after releasing one album as a trio. February 2007 saw the release of Luscious Jackson's Greatest Hits compilation.
In 2011 the group announced they had re-united and they were planning to make new music,, releasing two new albums in November 2013.
In 1991, Jill Cunniff and Gabby Glaser created the first Luscious Jackson demo with tip money from their restaurant jobs. Their first live performance was opening for Beastie Boys and Cypress Hill at the now-defunct Building in lower New York City. The Beastie Boys asked Luscious Jackson to be the first band on their Grand Royal label.
Three tracks from the original Luscious Jackson demo and four new songs were released in 1992 as the In Search of Manny EP. "Let Yourself Get Down" and "Daughters Of The Kaos" were issued as promotional singles. A video was also filmed for the ISOM track "Daughters of the Kaos".
After previewing two new recordings from their forthcoming album on the promotional Daughters Of The Kaos EP, Luscious Jackson released their first full-length LP for the Grand Royal label, Natural Ingredients (1994). The album spawned three minor hits with "CitySong (NY State Of The World)," "Deep Shag" and "Here", the latter featured in the Alicia Silverstone film Clueless. In addition, all three singles had music videos which could be seen on MTV.
The years 1994 and 1995 brought continued success for the band. They took part in the Lollapalooza tour and were the musical guest on numerous television shows including Saturday Night Live, Viva Variety and MTV's 120 Minutes. They were also featured in a fashion segment on MTV's House of Style with Cindy Crawford and on the Nickelodeon series The Adventures of Pete and Pete in the episode titled "Dance Fever". The band performed "Angel", "Satellite", "Pele Merengue", and "Here" at Little Pete's first junior high dance.
While on tour in 1995, Trimble and Cunniff recorded a collection of mellow, acoustic driven songs under the name Kostars titled Klassics With A "K". The album was released in 1996 and featured contributions by Schellenbach and Glaser as well as Gene and Dean Ween of Ween and was produced by Josephine Wiggs, bass player of The Breeders.
The time between 1996 and 1997 was Luscious Jackson's most commercially successful period. While promoting the release of their second full-length album Fever In Fever Out (produced by Daniel Lanois), they scored their first Billboard Top 40 Hit "Naked Eye". Two follow up singles were released, "Under Your Skin" and "Why Do I Lie?," which was featured in the Gus Van Sant film Good Will Hunting.
During this time, Luscious Jackson's "Nice Duds" fan club members received a 10-track CD album of demos and live rarities titled Tip Top Starlets.
In 1998 Luscious Jackson recorded George Gershwin's "I've Got a Crush on You" for the Red Hot Organization's compilation album Red Hot + Rhapsody, a tribute to George Gershwin, which raised money for various charities devoted to increasing AIDS awareness and fighting the disease. Luscious Jackson were featured in an ad campaign for The Gap throughout 1998 and 1999. Their Christmas ad "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" was voted the most popular of the campaign in TV Guide.
Vivian Trimble left Luscious Jackson to pursue other interests and was replaced by Singh Birdsong. Two years later Vivian Trimble and Josephine Wiggs (formerly of The Breeders) released an album under the name Dusty Trails.
Returning to 1999, Luscious Jackson (recording as a trio) released their third full-length LP Electric Honey. The single "Ladyfingers" was a moderate success with the video put into heavy rotation on VH1. "Ladyfingers" was also featured in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Beer Bad". A second single "Nervous Breakthrough" was issued without a music video or commercial single release. Plans for a third single from Electric Honey, "Devotion" were scrapped as interest in the album waned, though a radio/single remix was prepared. In August that year the group performed in Toronto with Cibo Matto at The Opera House in Toronto.
In 2000, Luscious Jackson announced they would no longer be recording or touring as they wanted to spend more time with their families.
Greatest hits and solo albums
On June 26, 2007, vocalist/guitarist Gabby Glaser released her debut solo album, Gimme Splash on Latchkey Records.
In 2006, Luscious Jackson announced plans to reunite to record a new album of songs for children; by September of that year, the band had completed eleven tracks for the album, and was seeking a label to release it; it was untitled, though Cunniff told MTV she wanted to call it It's All Goo.
On the July 8, the official Twitter and Facebook accounts became active and confirmed the band had reunited. Jill Cunniff, Gabrielle Glaser and Kate Schellenbach all returned to the band but Vivian Trimble has not. Working with Pledgemusic as part of a fundraising drive, the band hope to finish their album for children that had first been planned in 2006. They have also revealed they plan to make a new studio album, their first since 1999.
A previously unreleased track from 1999 called "Girlscout" was also made available by the band as a free download.
On February 8, 2012, Rolling Stone magazine posted an article on how the band has reunited. The band quietly reunited in 2011 after more than a decade apart to begin work on their first album of new material since Electric Honey was released in 1999. The band have opted to skip the traditional label route this time around in favor of funding their new project with Pledgemusic, a site that helps bands connect with their audience and offers an interactive pre-sale option with exclusive rewards for fans. Although still in the process of recording new music, a track titled "Are You Ready?," is available via internet stream. In September 2013, the lead single "So Rock On" from the forthcoming album Magic Hour was premiered on NPR's All Songs Considered program.
The trio released Magic Hour in November 2013, and briefly toured in support of the 10-song album with two east-coast stops: Philadelphia on November 23 and New York on December 7.
Side and solo projects
Band members have been involved in the following side and solo projects:
- Klassics With A "K" by Kostars (1996)
- Dusty Trails by Dusty Trails (2000)
- Punk Debutante by Cooler Kids (2003)
- City Beach by Jill Cunniff (2007)
- Gimme Splash by Gabby Glaser (2007)
- "Luscious Jackson Loses Trimble". Rolling Stone magazine. Apr 7, 1998. Retrieved 2009-04-13.
- "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2013-07-25.
- "From Then to Now: Kate Schellenbach talks Beastie Boys, Luscious Jackson, and everything in between". tomtommag.com. Tom Tom Magazine. Retrieved 2014-10-10.
- "Luscious Jackson". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 16 June 2013.
- "LUSCIOUS JACKSON: GREEN TEA & HONEY". Chart Attack, August 16, 1999. by John Teshima
- "Live Reviews: Luscious Jackson/Cibo Matto August 1, 1999 The Opera House, Toronto". Chart Attack, Sher Martelle, August 1, 1999
- "Luscious Jackson Reunite — To Make Children's Album". MTV. September 26, 2006. Retrieved 2009-04-13.
- Matthew Perpetua (2012-02-08). "Exclusive: Luscious Jackson Return With First New Song in a Decade | Music News". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2012-02-23.
- "Fall Music Preview". National Public Radio. 2013-09-24. Retrieved 2011-10-07.
- TownTalk Delaware County edition |date=2013-11-13 |author Joe Szczechowski