|Years active 1980 (1980)–1995, 2001–present|
Labels Columbia, MCA, Megaforce
Associated acts Cyndi Lauper, Joan Osborne
Past members Bob King Bobby Woods John Kuzma Rob Miller Andy King Mindy Jostyn
Origin Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States (1980)
Members Eric Bazilian, Rob Hyman, David Uosikkinen
Genres Rock music, New wave, Roots rock
Albums Nervous Night, The Hooters Live, One Way Home, Zig Zag, Out of Body
hd the hooters and we danced atlantic city 4 16 11
The Hooters are an American rock band from Philadelphia. They combined elements of rock, reggae, ska, and folk music to create their sound. The Hooters first gained major commercial success in the United States in the mid-1980s due to heavy radio airplay and MTV rotation of several songs including "All You Zombies", "Day by Day", "And We Danced" and "Where Do the Children Go". They opened the Philadelphia portion of the Live Aid benefit concert in 1985.
- hd the hooters and we danced atlantic city 4 16 11
- Early years 19801984
- Mainstream success 19851989
- International success 19901995
- Hiatus 19952001
- Reunited 2001present
- Selected compilations
During the late 1980s and 1990s, The Hooters found significant commercial success internationally, especially in Europe, where they played at The Wall Concert in Berlin in 1990, before they went on hiatus in 1995.
Since reuniting in 2001, The Hooters have staged successful tours in Europe and 2007 saw the release of their first album of new material since 1993, Time Stand Still.
Early years (1980–1984)
The Hooters were formed by Rob Hyman and Eric Bazilian in 1980 and played their first show on July 4 of that year. They took their name from a nickname for the melodica, a type of keyboard harmonica which is German in origin, created by Hohner. Rob and Eric met in 1971 at the University of Pennsylvania and had played in a band in the late 1970s, based in Philadelphia, called Baby Grand, which also featured local singer, David Kagan. Baby Grand released two albums on Arista Records. In addition, producer/friend of the band Rick Chertoff also had a significant role during these album sessions, and he would later produce several Hooters albums as well.
During the early 1980s, The Hooters played on the Philadelphia club scene, boosted by airplay on WMMR, the major rock radio station in Philadelphia. Their music was also played very frequently on WRDV-FM in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. They soon became a huge success along their native East Coast, playing everything from clubs to high schools, while appearing on local television shows. The original versions of "Man in the Street," "Fightin' on the Same Side," "Rescue Me," and "All You Zombies" were released as singles in this time period.
On September 25, 1982, The Hooters opened for one of The Who's farewell tour concert shows at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia on a bill that also included The Clash and Santana. After this, the group separated after two exhausting years of playing at many clubs and high schools on the East Coast.
However, Bazilian and Hyman maintained their association and eventually reformed the band the following year. Besides Bazilian and Hyman, only drummer David Uosikkinen was retained from the original grouping. John Kuzma (guitar) and Bobby Woods (bass)—both now deceased—had already joined another group, Youth Camp. They were replaced by John Lilley (guitar, backing vocals) and Rob Miller (bass, backing vocals), two former members from another local popular group, Robert Hazard and the Heroes.
In 1983 The Hooters began working at last on their first album. The result, Amore, was released on the independent label Antenna and sold over 100,000 copies. Amore included songs like "All You Zombies", "Hanging On A Heartbeat", "Fightin' On The Same Side" and "Blood From A Stone", all of which would reappear in different versions on later albums. Although a studio album, Amore captured the same energy and spirit that made The Hooters admired for their live performances.
That same year, Bazilian and Hyman were asked to write, arrange and perform on the debut album of a relatively unknown singer named Cyndi Lauper, She's So Unusual, which was being produced by their former producer and friend, Rick Chertoff. Hyman co-wrote the song "Time After Time" (and also sang the lower harmony vocal in the choruses), which would go on to hit Number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart and was subsequently nominated for a Grammy Award for Song of the Year. On July 26, 1984, at the Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia, Columbia Records signed the Hooters to their first major recording contract.
Just before the band were about to experience mainstream success, bassist Rob Miller was seriously injured in an automobile accident and was replaced by Andy King.
Mainstream success (1985–1989)
The Hooters' 1985 Columbia Records debut album, Nervous Night, achieved platinum status around the world, selling in excess of 2 million copies and included Billboard Top 40 hits "Day By Day" (No. 18), "And We Danced" (No. 21) and "Where Do The Children Go" that featured accompanying vocals from Patty Smyth (No. 38). Rolling Stone named The Hooters the Best New Band of the Year.
On July 13, 1985, they were the opening band at the Philadelphia Live Aid benefit concert, gaining international recognition for the first time. Bob Geldof has publicly stated (including in the BBC Live Aid Against All Odds documentary) that he didn't see the Hooters as a high-profile band suitable for Live Aid, but that the band was forced on him by the promoter of Live Aid in the United States, Bill Graham. Geldof let his feelings be known during an interview for Rolling Stone saying: "Who the fuck are The Hooters?" The Hooters do not appear on the officially released DVD of the concert. Their first major overseas tour came later that year when they played throughout Australia.
On May 18, 1986, The Hooters participated in “America Rocks”, the concert portion of the 1986 Kodak Liberty Ride Festival that celebrated the restoration of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The three-hour concert was broadcast via satellite to 100 cities and also featured The Neville Brothers, Huey Lewis and the News, and Hall & Oates.
On June 15, 1986, The Hooters participated in A Conspiracy of Hope, a benefit concert on behalf of Amnesty International, at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
On September 5, 1986, The Hooters appeared on the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards, where they were nominated in the category of Best New Artist in a Video for "And We Danced." They performed two songs on the show, "And We Danced" and "Nervous Night."
At Billboard's 8th Annual Video Music Conference on November 22, 1986, The Hooters won two awards: Best Concert Performance for the "Where Do the Children Go" video and Best Longform Program for the full length Nervous Night home video. They also placed in five categories in Billboard's Top 100 of 1986: Top Pop Artist, No. 41; Top Pop Album, No. 23; Top Pop Album Artists/Groups, No. 16; Top Pop Album Artists based on one album, No. 27; and Top Pop Singles Artists based on three singles, No. 3.
In 1987 The Hooters experienced their first major commercial success in Europe. After heavy airplay in the United Kingdom, "Satellite," from the album One Way Home, became a hit single, reaching No. 22, with the band performing on the popular British television show Top of the Pops on December 3, where they would meet one of their musical idols, Paul McCartney. The song itself proved controversial, however, for its satire of the excesses of 'televangelism'. "Satellite" was also featured in an episode of the television show Miami Vice titled "Amen...Send Money", which first aired on October 2, 1987, dealing with two warring televangelists. The accompanying video went even further depicting a young girl and her parents (who resemble the couple from Grant Wood's famous 'American Gothic' painting) attempting to watch 'The Three Stooges' interspersed with The Hooters performing, but being constantly interrupted by transmissions from a Christian show. Although never officially confirmed, the video contained barely concealed parodies of famous Christian televangelists Tammy Faye Bakker, Jerry Falwell, and Oral Roberts. On the tour supporting One Way Home, Fran Smith Jr. (bass, backing vocals) was brought in to replace Andy King.
On November 24, 1987, Thanksgiving night, The Hooters headlined the Spectrum in Philadelphia for the first time. The show was broadcast live on MTV and the Westwood One radio network simultaneously, the second time the two networks had joined forces in producing a concert for one artist, the first being Asia in Asia on December 6, 1983.
1989 saw their final release for Columbia Records. Zig Zag introduced a politically oriented theme, with Peter, Paul and Mary providing background vocals for an updated version of the 1960s folk song 500 Miles, which became an international hit that led the way to another international success for the band.
International success (1990–1995)
As the 1990s dawned, The Hooters' success in the United States began to wane, while their popularity overseas, especially in Europe, reached new heights.
Following a show at The Town & Country Club in London in March 1988, the band had met Roger Waters of Pink Floyd, who told them that he was a fan. This eventually led to their appearance in Waters' staging of The Wall Concert at Potsdamer Platz in Berlin on July 21, 1990.
Violinist/guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Mindy Jostyn (formerly with Joe Jackson, Billy Joel and others) joined the group for a short period during 1992-1993.
1993 saw their debut album for MCA Records, Out of Body. While not a commercial success in the United States, the album found a large audience in Europe, especially in Sweden and Germany where "Boys Will Be Boys" became a huge hit.
The Hooters Live, recorded over two nights in Germany in December 1993, was released in Europe and Asia in 1994, but never saw a release in the United States.
The Hooters continued to tour throughout Europe until 1995 before deciding to take a hiatus to pursue individual projects.
For several years the members of The Hooters were active in a variety of fields, both in and outside of music.
Guitarist Eric Bazilian became recognized internationally for being a songwriter, session musician, arranger and producer for numerous artists throughout the United States and Europe. In 1995, he played all those roles except producer for Joan Osborne's debut album Relish, which was nominated for six Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year for the No. 4 Billboard hit "One of Us", which Bazilian wrote. He also released two solo albums: The Optimist in 2000 and A Very Dull Boy in 2002.
Keyboard player Rob Hyman built his own recording studio, Elmstreet Studios, in suburban Philadelphia, while also contributing to numerous musical artists as a songwriter, session musician, arranger and producer, among them being Joan Osborne and Ricky Martin.
Drummer David Uosikkinen, having moved to San Diego, California, launched an independent record label, Moskeeto Records, while also working as a drummer for various artists including Patty Smyth, Cyndi Lauper, Rod Stewart and Alice Cooper. In 1999, he joined a group of technology experts who created an online music portal, MP3.com, which subsequently contributed to a change in the music industry's distribution and consumer listening habits.
Guitarist John Lilley started his own landscape gardening business, Avantgardeners, in the Philadelphia area.
Bass player Fran Smith Jr. joined the original Broadway cast members as Paul McCartney in Beatlemania. He also played the part of Carlo Cannoli in Tony n' Tina's Wedding, the longest running Off Broadway theatre comedy. From his own recording studio, he produced numerous artists, including Joe Piscopo and Flo & Eddie of The Turtles, as well as local artists and bands. In 1995, he released a solo album, For No Apparent Reason.
The Hooters did not play together again until November 21, 2001, when they performed at the Wachovia Spectrum in Philadelphia for a one off show to celebrate disc jockey Pierre Robert's 20th anniversary at local rock radio station WMMR, the first major station to ever play The Hooters back in the early 1980s.
2003 saw a full-time reunion of The Hooters in Germany where they completed a successful 17-city tour. The success of the tour prompted two further tours in 2004 and 2005 where they premiered new unreleased songs and played in additional countries, including Switzerland and Sweden.
On May 11, 2004, The Hooters were presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Philadelphia Music Awards.
November 2005 marked the appearance of The Hooters on VH1 Classic's concert series Decades Live Rock as guests of Cyndi Lauper where they performed "And We Danced" and "All You Zombies."
June 2006 finally saw The Hooters play their first official shows in the United States in over a decade. Over the course of three nights they performed three shows: a homecoming show at Philadelphia's Electric Factory on June 16; a show at The Borgata in Atlantic City, New Jersey on June 17; and finally, an outdoor show at Hubbard Park in Rob Hyman's hometown of Meriden, Connecticut on June 18.
Following these shows, The Hooters entered Hyman's Elmstreet Studios to record their first album of new material since 1993. Time Stand Still was released in September 2007, preceded by a tour of Europe from June through August, with shows in Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Switzerland.
In November 2007 The Hooters returned to Europe for a short tour of Switzerland and Germany, including a show filmed for television in Basel, Switzerland as part the AVO Concerts Series. They then played two shows in their hometown of Philadelphia at the Electric Factory during Thanksgiving week on Wednesday, November 21 and Friday, November 23, with the latter show broadcast by radio station WXPN in 85 markets.
On February 28 and March 1, 2008, The Hooters once again entered Elmstreet Studios to begin work on a new album. Accompanied by Ann Marie Calhoun on violin, the band recorded acoustic rearrangements of 12 of their previously released songs, which resulted in a double-disc set, along with the band's concerts the previous year at Philadelphia's Electric Factory. The album, Both Sides Live, was released in November 2008.
March 2008 saw The Hooters embark on a series of shows in the United States in support of 'Time Stand Still', which saw a Stateside release the previous month, including at B.B. King's Blues Club and Grill in New York City on Thursday, March 6, and The Birchmere in Alexandria, Virginia on Saturday, March 29.
In July 2008, The Hooters launched a European summer tour, playing shows in Norway, Sweden, Germany and Switzerland.
On October 23, 2009, in one of the last concerts at the Wachovia Spectrum, Philadelphia area musicians The Hooters, Todd Rundgren and Hall & Oates headlined a concert titled "Last Call".
All You ZombiesNervous Night · 1985
And We DancedNervous Night · 1985
Johnny BOne Way Home · 1987