Dandy Warhols self-written pre-...The Dandy Warhols COme Down autobiography

The Dandy Warhols
by The Dandy Warhols

Dear Friend,

The release of our debut CD, Dandy's Rule OK (Tim/Kerr, 1995), is where the whole big hype thing began. Until then we were a little band playing around Portland, Oregon (that's the USA) and practicing in Courtney and Pete's crappy little basement. Our local indie label Tim/Kerr Records (Everclear, Poison Idea, etc.) plucked us like a big ripe cherry to do our CD. It turned out great and even though the critics thought we were trying to sound British, we felt it was more Velvet Underground/ T Rex-ish with 60's harmonies and a dose of good old fashioned NW rock. We like melodies and psychedelia.

So at the time of ...Rule OK's release there was this big industry buzz about the NW and we got swept up by it. The first single, "TV Theme Song," was added on a lot of radio stations and even MTV. We were pleasantly surprised, especially when this was done with Tim/Kerr's one person promotion department. After that we had every major label A + R person and their mom following us around. If you know us, you know that we can be excessive and big moochers, so naturally we rode this pony for everything it was worth; free meals, plane rides, hotel rooms, and much, much more. Eventually we ran out of A + R people willing to fund our entertainment so we chose the best record label we could find to sign with, Capitol Records. They gave us loads of cash and it was a big party. We all have healthy egos anyway but at this point we thought we could do no wrong. We had our picture in Rolling Stone, we toured the world, and everyone wrote about us saying that we were the next big thing. Of course we fucked it up.

When it came time to do the big record it all fell apart. The songs weren't quite ready, the studio wasn't quite right, Courtney and Eric started fighting, and when Capitol heard the tracks they said "there's no songs!" "Songs? Oh, we thought you wanted something new." We thought it couldn't get any worse when our high profile accountant told us that we were broke and that our personal savings had been used to fund everything. The press went crazy with speculation, our new friends stopped calling, and we felt like dumb-asses. It was a wakeup call. We moved all our gear back to Courtney and Pete's crappy basement, Courtney wrote a bunch of songs, and we went back to the studio with Tony Lash to have another try (Tony co-produced our first record, along with doing Eric Matthews and Heatmiser).

As well as being screw-ups, we also happen to be the luckiest band in the world. When Capitol heard our new record, ...The Dandy Warhols Come Down (1997), they said "it's like great songs but new." Now everyone is excited, we are glad to have it done, and are ready to play out again. Now you ask if we have learned any humility from when we started out in that crappy basement? Not really, we acted like rock stars then and we act like rock stars now. Have a nice year and we hope to see you soon.

The Dandy Warhols, 1997