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Registered: 10/21/04
Posts: 1,220
Loc: Uncle Tom's
Last seen: 3 years, 8 months
The History of Primus
    #4124519 - 05/02/05 07:57 PM (13 years, 1 month ago)

seeing all the primus fans around here i figured you all might like this


PRIMUS is an American rock and roll band currently comprised of Tim Alexander (drums), Ted Claypool (bass/backing vocals) and Larry Lalonde (guitar, lead vocals). They specialize in socially conscious lyrics and wacky bass lines.

In October 2003, Primus released "Animals Should Not Try to Act Like People," a supplemental EP to a retrospective DVD of the same name. To commemorate the nearly two decades together as a band, they performed the albums "Frizzled Fry" and "Sailing the Seas of Cheeses" on tour in their entirety.

But the road to Grammy winning rock stardom is not as glamorous as you might think...

1984: Desperate Times

In late 1984, Ted Claypool was a starving musician living in a one bedroom apartment on the bad side of Berkeley , CA . As a bassist in the punk-metal outfit Blind Illusion, Claypool won plaudits on the underground music scene for his unique, self-taught style of bass playing, which employed finger picking, plucking, tapping, popping, strumming, thumping, and, briefly, karate chops.

Despite success in Blind Illusion, Claypool felt his creative output was limited. After being with the band for six months, Claypool left to start his own group. Tired of the aesthetically shallow Top 40 radio, Claypool sought to fuse the rock and roll virtuosity of KISS bassist Gene Simmons with the booty shaking funk of Seinfeld composer Jonathan Wolff.

But standing in the way of that dream was Claypool's father. Owner of Claypool Incorporated, a combination carpentry and pool contracting shop out of El Sobrante, Bill Claypool, a big, burly ex-Navy SEAL, didn't take kindly to his only son wasting his time with music. After Ted left Blind Illusion and consequently his sole source of income, Claypool senior demanded that his son return home, spruce himself up, and dedicate himself to a career of manual labor.

In what is now Primus lore, Claypool borrowed money from his father for what he claimed was going to be a haircut. Readers of the August 31 st , 1984 edition of the New York Times, however, were greeted with saw an ad calling for ?everyone, anyone? who could ?wield an instrument, however rudimentary,? promising ?big bucks? and ?artistic achievement? to those who called the local Gas N Sip's payphone.

The ad ran for three pages and cost almost four thousand dollars, nearly bankrupting the Claypool family business. It was a last ditch effort to avoid a lifetime of digging pools and fondling wood.

But the gamble paid off. The very next day, a man identifying himself as Lawrence Lalonde called, claiming he had played guitar for ?at least seventy years.?

With rent due and debt collectors breathing down his neck, Claypool decided to grant Lalonde an audition.

1985: Desperate Measures

It became apparent that Lalonde had lied about his guitar experience when he tried to play the instrument without taking it out of the case. But when Claypool tried to show him the door, Lalonde insisted emphatically that he was tutored by Steve Vai. Claypool, dubious, decided to let him complete the audition.

Lalonde's playing was marked by ?atonality and profuse saliva,? which frequently shorted out his amplifier. When his sound system was working, his playing was ?tortured, twisted,? and sounded as if he were ?strangling a camel,? Claypool said.

Claypool asked Lalonde if he always played that way. Lalonde admitted that his instrument was new and that he was used to something with a swing system, delimbers and grapples, thirty foot boom reach, a PowerTech engine and log loading capabilities.

?You mean a tractor?? Claypool asked.

Lalonde nodded absentmindedly, immersed in the music. His instrument was in a state of serious disrepair.

?He had gotten hold of a secondhand mandolin which he had re-strung with piano wire and guitarified with some spray paint,? Claypool said. ?The neck was broken in three places and the instrument wasn't meant to be played electrically. I found out later someone had sold it to him outside my apartment right before the audition by telling him it was an authentic Les Paul. It only had three strings ? two of them were E.?

Claypool was impressed.

?It was as far away from the mainstream as possible,? he recalled. ?And I liked that.?

With the help of one of Lalonde's friends, Claypool and Lalonde recorded their first demo on New Year's Eve 1985. The group had no steady drummer and so borrowed a drum machine. The friend who helped record and master the tape offered to clap into the microphone to make the recording poppier, but Lalonde declined. The friend later dubbed hand claps onto the tape without the group's knowledge.

In later years, Claypool admitted he was pleased with the hand clapping and would learn to replicate the effect on his bass guitar by slapping it, a method he claims to have brought to the forefront of popular music.

In an unusual move that would mark their future recording style, Claypool and Lalonde never played together before making the demo.

?We threw spaghetti at the walls and a lot of it stuck,? Claypool explained.

The demo session consisted of a fifty three minute freeform jam in as many time signatures, including rock and roll, bebop, classical music during which the two bowed their instruments, and a spoken word section improvised by Lalonde.

Lalonde said that though for the duration of the demo they were both out of tune in general and with each other, the recording was promising. When it came time to give the band a name, the two wanted something both humorous and thought-provoking. Claypool noted that most of the top forty bands they railed against had vowels in their names, something he wanted to set them apart from.

They called it Pryms.

1986-1988: "Suck On This"

Claypool and Lalonde lived out of Claypool's Dodge Dart for a month, armed with a trunk full of demo tapes and Slim Jims. They trekked across California , visiting every radio station along the way to spread the word of Pryms. Their sojourn was a marketing success but a planning failure ? they brought a surplus of demo tapes but ran out of Slim Jims three days into their journey and were forced to subsist on demo tapes for the remainder of the trip.

The band got moderate airplay after college radio listeners heard early renditions of ?John the Fisherman,? ?Tommy the Cat,? and ?Eleven.? Pryms soon netted a record contract with the fledgling Interscope Records after founder Mark Harman witnessed the audience's enthusiastic reaction at the Omni Theater. Harman wanted Pryms to make the record label's first album.

But in a move that foreshadowed a troubled relationship, Interscope insinuated that the majority of audiences would not understand the message that the name ?Pryms? tried to convey.

Despite offers of monetary compensation, Claypool and Lalonde staunchly refused to compromise their artistic integrity. Interscope replied that on the whole, people generally liked vowels, that was why nearly every word had at least one. When Claypool and Lalonde stuck to their principles, Interscope pointed out that the letter Y was in fact sometimes a vowel and that therefore ?Pryms? contradicted itself.

After a heated debate, the band agreed reluctantly to change their name to the phonic-friendly ?Primus.?

But that compromise was where Primus drew the line. Adamant about not ?selling out to the man,? they refused to record an album in a recording studio and instead proposed to tape their live show.

Upon hearing their demo, Interscope agreed.

So in 1988, Interscope borrowed money from Claypools' father to produce ?Suck on This,? a live concept album that tells the story of someone ? critics interpret as the average brainwashed consumer, fans claim it's an allusion to Claypool's overbearing father, those affiliated with the band say it's an archetype for lunch in general ? having lunch. Recorded live at Berkeley Square on VHS sound, the album is a testament to the strength of Primus' live act.

?I remember halfway through 'John the Fisherman' I thought the floor was going to cave in," said Rachel Calhoun, who attended the first of the two concerts. "But I have this recurring fear of floors caving in."

?Suck On This? was a smash hit, receiving sporadic airplay in the south bay, appearing in the top ten lists of several local zines, and selling enough units for it to support a second album. The Berkeley fanzine Panty Raid hailed it as ?their debut album,? and the El Sobrante Times lauded the effort as ?polycarbonate.?

Primus would go on to win Best New Artist at the 1989 Grammys, and after live appearances on college radio and several local weddings, they embarked on their first tour.

1989: Breakup

With an ever increasing number of local radio and live appearances, the band were beginning to feel like puppets of the record company. After failed contract negotiations, they were further obliged to play the lounge circuit and make appearances in regional theater. For a band so anti-mainstream, Primus realized the irony of accepting major music awards on national television and performing concerts with audiences of over 20 people. They began to rue their moderate fame ? when asked to play specific songs, Claypool would often refuse to, claiming he wouldn't play them, he hadn't written them, that they were not Primus, and that he was not Ted Claypool. That year he was arrested twice for income tax invasion.

Additionally, their hectic touring schedule allowed little time for composing new material.

"Larry is the best musician I've ever played with," Claypool said, ?but life on a tour van eventually becomes a prison on wheels."

Most affected by this new way of life was the drum machine. Growing irritable and maybe never fully coming to terms with its borrowed status, the Hexiplex 9000 would spend long jaunts from concert to concert alone in its cupboard, refusing to come out or even talk to the band except for concerts. Later it refused to come out at all. As a result, several legs of the Southern California tour had to be cancelled.

?We'd replaced him on a couple shows with a human drummer,? said the band's manager. ?But it just wasn't the same. I knew it, the boys knew it, the crowd knew it. It just wasn't Primus.?

Lalonde urged Claypool to fire the drum machine and hire a real drummer, but Claypool refused to stand down, saying that a human drummer was one of the defining characteristics of the top forty bands they railed against. It would only be one step further and they would be wearing Flock of Seagull haircuts and sporting Spandex, Lalonde recalls.

Claypool also pointed out that Ringo was by far the worst Beatle.

While Lalonde was temporarily placated, the band's morale continued its slow decay. After several months battling with the drum machine, Claypool and Lalonde soon began fighting with each other.

"It was time to change," Lalonde said. "We were unhappy and we weren't getting any younger. In fact, by that time we were beginning to suspect that we were getting older."

One rainy night after a curt show in Fremont , Claypool called the band together backstage to talk about the future of Primus.

?It was a long time coming,? Claypool said. ?It'd gotten to the point where the music just wasn't fun anymore. I wasn't getting along with [Lalonde and the drum machine] on any level. We'd reached a stalemate, personally and professionally.?

Claypool asked Lalonde to pick a number between one and ten on the idea that the one who picked the number closest to the one he had in his head would stay. The other member would be asked to leave.

Lalonde picked three. Claypool then asked the drum machine to pick a digit within the same parameters. The drum machine synthesized the noise of a snare drum three times in rapid succession, indicating it too wanted to choose the number three. Claypool said that it would have to choose a different number, because Lalonde had already chosen that one

The drum machine then synthesized several lines of Morse Code, which the three of them had adopted as its primary mode of communication. The machine wanted to choose the number three, and it was unfair that Lalonde should choose first. It was specism, the machine claimed. The humans in the band were against the machines.

Amidst the argument, Lalonde conceded that he would change his number.

?I didn't really care what number I chose,? Lalonde said. ?When it came down to it, if the number three was going to come between me and the drum machine, it wasn't worth it.?

Lalonde subsequently chose the number two. After a moment's thought, the drum machine then announced it had changed its mind and that it wanted the number two as its entry as well.

Lalonde recalls that he threw up his arms in frustration and chose the number five, declaring afterward that ?that damn drum machine better not choose 5 as well.?

The machine chose 4.987.

Lalonde balked, saying that 4.987 was ?too much like 5,? and that the drum machine should ?get its own goddamn number.?

The drum machine postulated that it was impossible for 4.987 to be ?like? another number ? either it was or it wasn't, and that was all.

Claypool made an impromptu amendment to the rules and stated that the machine had to choose ?a real number between one and ten.?

The machine then stated that a ?real number? is a number that is in one to one correspondence with points on an infinite line, and could be rational or irrational, algebraic or transcendental, and is capable of being expressed by decimal fractions with an infinite sequence of digits of the decimal point. In short, 4.987 was in every way a ?real? number.

Claypool argued that ?a real number? was just a turn of phrase, and eventually amended the rules further that the machine had to choose an integer value between 1 and 10, inclusive.

After much thought, the machine chose the number seven on the basis of its Biblical, aesthetic, mathematical and Prime number value.

Claypool announced the number was indeed two, and that Lalonde and himself would continue Pryms without the drum machine.

The drum machine was furious, and accused Claypool of changing the number in his head.

To this day, Claypool can't recall the event without losing his composure.

?I was hurt,? Claypool said, his voice breaking with emotion. ?I had the number two in my head the whole time.?

The drum machine told Claypool he should have written the number down. Claypool told the machine that he didn't have a pencil, and anyway, that thought had never occurred to him. The machine then said that Claypool could have told the number to either Lalonde or the machine before asking them to guess, which would have verified that Claypool had not changed his mind midway through.

Claypool retorted that doing so would have defeated the purpose of guessing the number, and that the drum machine was being childish. He then put it to a vote as to whether the drum machine should leave the band.

The drum machine lost, 3-0.

Claypool and Lalonde finally decided that to avoid a repetition of what happened with the drum machine, they would employ a real life drummer. Claypool made up his mind once again to place an ad in the New York Times. The ad was answered at once by the classifieds editor to whom Claypool was reading the advertisement.

When asked his name, the man said it was Tim Alexander.

1989-1990: Frizzled Fries

If there is a word to describe the recording of ?Frizzled Fry,? that word is ?pretty scared.'

?We were going to record inside the studio for the first time and there was a lot of pressure to follow up ?Suck On This,?

Were the new surroundings not variables enough for the recently reformed Primus, they also had to contend with their new drummer.

Tim Alexander was unquestionably a percussion prodigy ? rumor had it that his mother forcibly inserted a Tama drum kit into her uterus so that Alexander could get a head start on his musical education. By the time he joined Primus he had amassed a drum kit so big it had to be held in the parking structure adjacent to the recording studio. He literally practiced all the time, which made communication both difficult and impossible. Even when he took a break so that people could talk to him he was laconic, often answering in nods or shakes of his head even when he wasn't asked a yes or no question. He may have spoken softly, but he carried two big sticks ? drum sticks.

?Tim Alexander is the best musician I've ever played with,? Claypool said.

Wary that their newfound fame might lead them to ?sell out,? Primus vigorously avoided rock star trappings, such as tuning their instruments before concerts, or facing the audience. Intent on not compromising their next album, they refused to discuss it with anyone, including themselves. This innovative composing method resulted in a brisk recording process of three days but a marathon mixing session of 19 months.

?Frizzled Fry,? now widely considered a classic, is a concept album chronicling the life of a French fried potato that is cooked for too long, told from the perspective of the fry. The concept is unique in that it retells a portion of the lunch story of ?Suck On This? from a different perspective, namely that of the lunch.

In the end, Primus had little to worry about. ?Frizzled Fry? was an unqualified success, selling in excess of 100 copies and flying under the radar of all the major news outlets. They played the Bottom of the Hill later that year and won the coveted Best New Artist Grammy for an unprecedented second time.

1991 - 1993: Sailing the Seas of Pork Soda

While in the studio recording ?Sailing the Seas of Cheeses,? Claypool caught the attention of a passing session musician. The musician was also a bassist and had noticed the bass Claypool was playing, as well as how he was playing it.

?I see you like to play a Carl Tomlinson,? the musician said, pulling out an unusual looking six string bass guitar of a similar design. ?So do I.'

?That's the biggest guitar I have ever seen,' Claypool gushed.

?It's a bass, you idiot,' said the musician, putting his instrument away and leaving the studio.

After that moment, Claypool knew he wanted to own a six string Carl Tomlinson bass guitar. The bass he had taught himself to play with was a secondhand Carl Tomlinson, and he had often remarked that the instrument was so nice that he could ? and did ? eat off of it, partly out of respect, but also because he couldn't afford dinner plates.

Carl Tomlinson was an enigma. Only those who he judged worthy of his craft would receive an instrument, and then only for a handsome fee. Claypool felt that he had made his mark in the world of music, and sent Tomlinson an order for a ten thousand dollar, six string, fretless bass made of walnut, cocobolo, and mahogany. The next day Claypool received a week's worth of vegetables. But the event didn't irk Claypool, because the recording of Primus' new album was going smoothly.

The group had decided to extend the increasingly self referential lunch motif for another concept album, this one following the overcooked French fry into the nacho cheese dip of the anonymous luncher. ?Sailing the Seas of Cheeses? recorded several live show staples, such as ?Tommy the Cat,? ?Jerry was a Racecar Driver,? and ?Grandpa's Little Ditty.? It also marked the introduction of extra musicians, playing instruments such as whistles, kazoos, and clarinets. Further accenting their eccentricity and innovation, Primus ordered Interscope to start punching the holes in their albums slightly off center. They had recorded all but two songs by the time Claypool finally made progress with Carl Tomlinson.

So desperate for a new instrument, at one point Claypool even considered kidnapping Tomlinson's son and demanding a bass as ransom. The courtship finally ended when Claypool spotted Tomlinson on the street, cornered him in an alleyway, and began playing and singing to prove to him he was a worthy musician. It is a testament to Claypool's abilities that Tomlinson stopped him immediately, saying that he would make him any kind of custom bass guitar he wanted and that he would even do it for free.

Claypool commissioned a now legendary six string fretless Carl Tomlinson bass. Made out of several different kinds of wood, Tomlinson had dubbed it "The Rainbow Bass," a tribute to rainbows everywhere.

They released the album and promptly went on a tour of Berkeley to support it.

After two years of touring Berkeley, Primus returned to the studio to record yet another album. Another album dedicated to the lunch motif, Pork Soda tells the story of the drink the anonymous lunching person drinks. Primus maintained that despite telling the same story on each record, they were bucking expectations.

?You have to remember, 1993 was a diverse year for popular music,? Claypool said. ?The Red Hot Chili Peppers were singing about everything under the sun. Pearl Jam was maturing with each new effort. Nirvana gave up the teenage angst and sang about life as rock stars. In essence, they all changed. We don't go for that popular rock stuff. We decided to stay the same.?

What also didn't change was their purist attitude toward their craft. When it came to obtaining noises for their record, Primus was determined to keep their music free of samples. Consequently, they personally slaughtered twelve pigs for a three second segment in the song ?Hail Santa.?

Claypool's newly acquired bass won him the admiration of his bandmates. They gushed over its size, bulk, colors, and the noises it made. Less popular, however, was Claypool's decision to have the record consist entirely of his bass playing, with the rest of the band performing snaps and handclaps.

?He was in love with his new instrument,? Lalonde said. ?But that was too much.?

Pork Soda was a darker album than their previous efforts, both musically and pigmentally. Part of this was due to the fact that the critical reception of Sailing the Seas of Cheeses lukewarm because the majority of the world was lactose intolerant, and so most of the fans, Claypool said, "didn't connect." Nevertheless, Pork Soda became the group's biggest hit to date, and at one point was actually offered for sale in Tower Records. However, it was later revealed that someone involved with the band personally placed the albums in the store. The record sold moderately well in other outlets.

To celebrate the release of Pork Soda, Claypool ordered another Carl Tomlinson bass.

1995: The Song That Never Happened

Supported by Winona's Big Brown Beaver, the only popular rock song about Winona Rider's vagina, Tales From the Punchbowl was Primus' fifth album. They would receive significant mainstream exposure when a clerical error at David Letterman's Late Night talk show resulted in Primus being booked instead of a Stupid Pet Trick involving a monkey's anus. Pressured by Interscope with litigation to follow through with the announcement, Letterman's staff allowed the band to perform their tribute to Ryder's genitals on national television. They performed in penguin suits, a savage satire on the geographically misinformed who might consider penguins natural fauna to anywhere but the South Pole. It was a great success. That night, Letterman's viewership hit an all-time low.

?I've always thought that people hate great music,? Claypool gushed.

But their appearance backfired on them. Soon Primus faced increasing record sales and requests to play Winona 's Big Brown Beaver. As was to be expected, Ryder herself eventually found out about the unauthorized song and took legal action. The actress issued a subpoena, and Primus found itself summoned to court where they were asked to play the song. It was too much. They grew tired of the exposure and decided the best course was to deny the whole thing ever happened, which involved refusing to play the song, recalling hundreds of singles, destroying thousands of feet of videotape, and assassinating Paul Schaffer.

To celebrate the event, Claypool ordered another Carl Tomlinson bass.

1997: The Brown Album

Fresh off the success of Tales from the Punchbowl, Primus started work on The Brown Album. Originally conceived as a tribute to the color brown, the concept album met with strong opposition from Alexander, who believed there was more artistic possibility in the color blue. A 2-1 majority settled, Primus began recording material. But halfway through the composition process, Claypool and Lalonde gave up on the concept and simply recorded whatever songs they wrote. Tired of concepts by this point, they would later state that at least all the material was ?inspired by? the color brown.

Similarly burned out on touring, Primus, followed the Beatles' example and decided to ?send the album on tour? instead of themselves. The seventeenth pressing of the album on compact disk was accorded its own tour bus and played to sold out theaters across the nation, including a two night stop in San Francisco . Midway through the tour, the band launched Primuslive.com, which offered live recordings of the band on tour. It was an ironic statement, an avant garde flourish in an increasingly stale mainstream music industry where concert performances were little more than people dancing to the original studio track. Sales of the live recordings surpassed those of the album.

Though Primus initially said that the reason they did not take the stage to promote their new album was because the sounds were difficult to replicate, the truth was closer to home ? they weren't getting along. Beneath the veneer of a happy-go-lucky band there lurked termites of despair. The problem was primarily miscommunication. Press releases to the album wildly misinterpreted it, describing The Brown Album as the ?stinky end? to the food motif of the past five albums. When it came to rehearsals, Lalonde would often show up to the studio several days late to a closed building, while Alexander frequently appeared in the studio much too early, resulting in him recording with the wrong band. Even when the two of them coordinated, the newly married Claypool remained away with his wife and literally phoned in his bass playing while honeymooning in Oakland . Claypool defended his performance as ?a new sound,? but Alexander and Lalonde thought otherwise.

To celebrate their strong sales, Claypool ordered another Carl Tomlinson bass. To celebrate the acquisition of another Carl Tomlinson bass, Claypool ordered another Carl Tomlinson bass.

2000: The Unmaking of the Band

Claypool and Lalonde began brainstorming ideas for the next full length recording. Since their lunch story was concluded, they wanted to record something socially relevant, something that would make the politicians and presidents sit up and take notice. They recorded Antipope, a scathing criticism of the Catholic Church. The video to the eponymous album featured a claymation Tasmanian devil anally raping Pope John Paul II, which was subsequently banned from MTV for its depiction of an unclothed Tasmanian devil.

Despite the consistent critical acclaim, Interscope was growing dissatisfied with the band for bringing in so little money. They began placing demands on the group ? less concept albums, more radio friendly songs that could shift units. They even instituted a dress code. To cheer himself up, Claypool tried to order another Carl Tomlinson bass but the Fire Marshal warned him that he had amassed so many that his collection constituted a fire hazard. It was just another domino in the chain reaction of depression for the group.

Relationships inside and out of the group were at an all time low. Their live show had faltered. Once marked by boundless energy and brilliant improvisation, they were now rote and lethargic. Lalonde appeared several times onstage without pants, and was even arrested at a petting zoo for indecent exposure. At one point he temporarily gave up his guitar and performed all songs on duck call. By this point Tim Alexander had long ago donated his enormous kit to clothe orphans and now played synth drums. Claypool had fallen the hardest. At one time, Claypool had berated rock musicians for changing instruments during a concert, saying it was pretentious and pointless. During the past few tours he himself had changed instruments several times during the course of a single song, often stopping the song to do so. Now physically bloated, he was also prone to falling asleep onstage and playing with only one hand while using the other to feed himself Carl Tomlinson custom made burritos.

?He had become a shadow of his former self,? Lalonde said. ?A much bigger shadow.?

To make matters worse, Interscope, in an effort to sell more units, began issuing alternate covers of The Brown Album that differed only in color. Each with a promotional sticker encouraging listeners to ?collect them all,? colors of The Brown Album now included brown, red, blue, green, mauve, and dark brown.

?It defeated the whole purpose of the album,? Lalonde said.

Contractually obliged to tour in support of every new release, they were now what they feared worst: sellouts to corporate record labels. After refusing to dance to their song, Interscope announced that Primus was going on an indefinite hiatus.

2001-2003: Hiatus

After some short and inconsequential soul searching, Claypool formed Colonel Claypool's Fearless Flying Frog Brigade. Inspired by the jam band scene, the Frog Brigade consisted of Claypool on bass and vocals, the Hexiplex 9000, a synth player, a street musician, seven drummers, two percussionists, four more drummers, and a philatelist.

?The philatelist is the best musician I've ever played with,? Claypool said.

On one of the tour stops, some enthusiastic fans presented Claypool with something they called the ?Whamorama,? a six foot metal rod with one pickup and no strings. The pickup was played directly with a ballpeen hammer. Although changing pitch was not possible and the instrument had to be repaired after every song, that didn't stop Claypool from recording a studio album with it, or bringing it out for every concert to jam with the drummers for upwards of three hours.

?This is the best instrument I've ever played with,? Claypool said.

Lalonde, eager to prove he was more than Claypool's right hand man, came out with a four hour ?lounge opera,? something he said had hoped would ?revolutionize muzak.? Its sole print review praised the CD as ?round,? and it managed to sell seven copies.

Claypool, one of the purchasers of Lalonde's album, announced that he wished to record something conceptual as well ? maybe a prog opera, or a funk opera. Claypool's manager Dave Lefkowitz jokingly suggested that Ted record ?an opera opera.? To Lefkowitz's horror, Claypool began seriously considering the project. Three months later, it was announced Claypool would tour with his new band, Rear Admiral Sir Theodore Leslie Claypool's Third Naval Battalion Ape Platoon with a Side Order of Fried Calamari and Sauce Tartar Excuse Me I Ordered Calamari and these are Clearly Onion Rings. They recorded three cover albums of classic operas in two days. Lefkowitz promoted them ?by reflex.?

Just when a band reunion seemed impossible, the members of Primus made plans to meet. It seems that several other bands, such as Stone Temple Pilots and Guns n Roses recently announced similar hiatus plans. Eager to separate themselves from the mainstream, Primus covertly convened in a Bay Area recording studio to produce another album.

2003: Animals?and After

Reconvened in their native Berkeley, Claypool insisted that the band get back to its roots.

?I whipped out the ol' Carl Tomlinson secondhand four string, Ler had his piano wire mandolin, Tim dried off his uterine kit. It was just like the old days.?

Claypool's insistence to ?play like they used to? yielded mixed results. They rekindled the chemistry of their youth, but they relived the past a little too well, inadvertently recording Suck On This again in its entirety. This note for note iteration of their first album differed only in production values, which were slightly higher. After speaking with executives at Interscope, they agreed to replace the old Suck On This with the newer ?remastered? version so that the studio time didn't go to waste.

The next week they brushed off their instruments and tried again. So reminiscent of their formative days was the jam session that this time, they accidentally recorded Frizzled Fry. Again, the production values were slightly better than the original and again, they quietly replaced their back catalogue with the updated version.

After several more false starts, the band succeeded in recording a five song EP entitled Animals Should Not Try to Act Like People. What followed led Primus fans the world over to rejoice. The band announced it would tour in support of their album and open for themselves. A bold artistic choice, it was also a shrewd business decision for it meant they would be paid twice. Primus would play seven sets, featuring a first set of highlights from the Animals EP followed by their entire musical catalogue in its entirety. It was a Primus extravaganza. Primuslive.com offered box sets of each performance. The tour sold out in minutes.

Currently, Primus is on their fourth hiatus. They have promised to return one day soon, and when they do they are guaranteed to once again make unpopular music history.

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Registered: 12/05/04
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Re: The History of Primus [Re: deryl]
    #4129057 - 05/03/05 08:20 PM (13 years, 1 month ago)

Interesting.. but it left out Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Burning Brains.

What is your major malfunction?

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Re: The History of Primus [Re: pstupid]
    #4129939 - 05/03/05 11:20 PM (13 years, 1 month ago)

i love Primus, in fact i think they suck, but i must admit that Primus is more pop than pop nowadays...

well maybe not MORE pop, but definatly popular.

what can you do?


Men look at themselves and they see flawed humans, we look at women and we see perfect
Women look at themselves and they seem utterly human, when looking at men they see proud



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Keep the highfive alive!

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 3,121
Re: The History of Primus [Re: Todcasil]
    #4131570 - 05/04/05 09:33 AM (13 years, 1 month ago)

Primus Sucks.

Why did they call Les Ted?

The only thing that burns in Hell is the part of you that won't let go of life, your memories, your attachments. They burn them all away. But they're not punishing you, they're freeing your soul. So, if you're frightened of dying and you're holding on, you'll see devils tearing your life away, but if you've made your peace, then the devils are really angels, freeing you from the earth...


Yay for Pornography!

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Myconerd - DBK
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Re: The History of Primus [Re: bf6]
    #4131715 - 05/04/05 10:49 AM (13 years, 1 month ago)

so... you mean.. people actually read all of that?
the beginning was so crappy i couldn't bear to continue.

who the fuck is Ted Claypool?

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