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10,000 Maniacs is considered to be one of the most influential American Alternative rock bands of all times. The group has been in the music industry for more than three decades now with varying lineups. The group hails from Jamestown, New York where it was formed back in 1981 by the name of Still Life. The original lineup of the group comprised of Robert Buck, Chet Cardinale, Dennis Drew, Teri New House and Steve Gustafson. Soon after the lineup also saw the additions of The Mill's former member John Lombardo and Natalie Merchant, who at that time was only seventeen years of age. Later in the July of the same year, Cardinale and New House parted its ways from the band, leaving Merchant as the only main singer of the group. With the passing years the group's lineup saw many drummers come and go, and they also changed its name to Burn Victims before finally settling for 10,000 Maniacs.
It was on September 7, 1981 when the group performed first time after renaming themselves to 10,000 Maniacs. At that time the lineup of the group comprised of Gustafson, Buck, Merchant, Drew, Tim Edborg and Lombardo. Soon after, the lineup of the band saw the addition of Bob 'Bob O Matic' Wachter as the new drummer who replaced Edborg. Originally, 10,000 Maniacs started off as a cover band and they grasped fame following the release of their cover of Peace Train by Cat Stevens. But later on as they got bored of doing so they finally decided to write their own music, and Merchant took charge as the key lyricist for the group while Lombardo did the music part. The following year, in 1982, the group finally started recording their first ever EP Album titled Human Conflict Number Five. Following the release, the group performed on several gigs and 10,000 Maniacs tickets were finally up for the grabs.
The following year, Secrets of the I Ching, was released as the debut full length album by the band. The album was released on group's very own record label called Christian Burial Music. The album garnered positive response from most of the critics and also featured a minor hit titled My Mother the War. Their singles garnered massive popularity in United Kingdom, after which the group started touring extensively all through United Kingdom during 1983 and 1984. Also in 1984, the group scored their first major label record deal with Elektra records in the month of November. With Elektra Records, The Wishing Chair was released as the group's second studio release in 1985 and was produced by Joe Boyd. Even though the album didn't enjoy as much success as the previous still it managed to attract quite some attention and positive criticism. Soon after the group went on concert tour throughout the Europe along with REM. After the conclusion of the concert tour the band became a five-piece group as Lombardo parted his way from the band.
The group tasted mainstream commercial success for the first time with the release of their studio album titled In My Tribe that came out back in 1987. The album was produced by Peter Asher and it debuted and peaked at #37 the albums chart. The album featured hit singles such as, Hey Jack Kerouac, What's the Matter Here?, Like the Weather and Don't Talk. The album sold well over two million copies.
More success came to the group's way with the albums like Bling Man's Zoo, Out Time in Eden and Hope Chest: The Fredonia Recordings. With the mainstream popularity coming their way, the group continued with their live concerts all across the globe. In 1997 the group released Love Among the Ruins and The Earth Pressed Flat came out in 1999. With their most recent album in the pipeline for the release in the year 2013, the group is all set for a series of their live performances. So if you wish to catch a glimpse of them live, then grab your cheap 10,000 Maniacs tickets right away.