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BIG NOISE
bignoiseWe're in the process of updating this description but wanted to add the following in the mean time:
Email from Randy Rabinowitz 2011: I was an ORIGINAL member of the Bard band "BIG NOISE".(Randy Rabinowitz- Trumpet Class of '81) I earnestly request this to be corrected in your history articles. I play trumpet, along with Buefort, on trombone, we were the original horn section (his actual name was Brian Osullivan at the time). I later introduced Peter Buetner (from CMS) into the band I have recordings of us performing, and I played with, and was close personal friends with each band member in many situations, including my documented "Senor Project", at which Ben Boretz was in attendance (and was graded with "Honors" in music, and I was awarderded the "The Bard Muscal Offering Award" upon my graduation in 1981. I was replaced on trumpet upon my graduation by my close friend, who later went on to play with the B- 52s, and passed away shortly there after- I will leave it to you do the proper research and learn his name as well. I would greatly appreciate a retraction and correction of this article (as i requested of your group two years ago) and please give credit where it is due, so that I do not have to take further actions again on this issue. Thank you. -Randy Rabinowitz

The band began in 1980-81 when John Jacobs, Andrea Cairone and Brian "Buford" O'Sullivan started jamming out in Manor House sub-basement. They played their first gig billed as "Orange Crush" in Kline, featuring Buford painted orange with latex house paint. Initially, the band included Stu Wood on drums, but he was soon replaced with Nelson Bragg, a transfer student from Rockport, Mass. They also enlisted several horn players, including Art Carlson (from The Trolls), Dave Casey, and others. They changed their name to "Live Short and Suffer," and began to play gigs on campus for parties at Sottery [a.k.a. Sodomy] Hall, Kline Commons, and Cash's Music Bar, among others. Read more about Live Short and Suffer and other early 80s Bard bands in The Light - Bard Rock Issue. The band recorded several demos in Manor House sub-basement, including the hits "College Student", "Full Nelson", and "Inverted Population". As their popularity grew, they began to think more commercially, changing their name to Big Noise (referencing the big band Big Noise from Winnetka). Soon, their recording projects were deemed too small so they sought the talents of townie Paul Antonell and his studio located on the first floor of "The Hell House". They worked on perfecting the earlier recorded songs and also recorded new songs including "Oh Joe", "Falling Underground", "Ugh" and "Running On". As their educations progressed, they began playing clubs around the area; of note, Jacarusso's, where the horns would march through the crowd with an atonal fanfare. They enlisted Peter Buettner, alto sax player and vegetarian chef from The Creative Music Studio across the river, and his tenure lasted for the rest of the band's existence. They released their first single, "College "Student", on Antonell's indie label Black Sheep Records to critical success. Read "Big Noise: Not Your Average Band" from the May 21, 1984 Bard Observer.

Upon graduation, the members decided to continue the band as a commercial vehicle, so they worked with several managers, including Greg Harris, a wine reseller from Ulster county, and then DJ Alex Miller, and his wife Stella. Wider audiences and bigger venues included NYC's CBGB's, The Cat Club and Hoboken's Maxwell's. Tenor sax veteran Ralph Carney was hired, and with this powerhouse lineup, they recorded a tape demo with songs including "Jumbo Town", "The Big Change", and "Reminiscing Girls". They also opened for The B-52s on Long Island, and X, Gang of Four, and Quarterflash at The Chance in Poughkeepsie. Andrea and Buford appeared on "The Joe Franklin Show", and the band recorded a MIDI project featured on a CBS/Epic compilation entitled "Presenting the Unsigned". Unfortunately things began to disassemble when Carney left the band due to other commitments. Soon after Nelson Bragg followed, and despite some efforts to regroup, Big Noise disbanded in the spring of 1987. Buford departed to New York City where he became a freelance musician; John Jacobs went on to pursue a lucrative career in insurance sales; Andrea Cairone married his long-time soul-mate Juliana; and Nelson Bragg moved around, playing with various bands until joining the Brian Wilson Band. Peter Buettner remained in Woodstock and continued playing alto sax with Carl Berger and others. [Adapted from Brian O'Sullivan's text on the Big Noise Myspace page.]

audio

Full Nelson

Virgin's Delight

images
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videos

Big Noise "College Student" music video (1984)
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