Ed Kowalczyk’s playlist
All four original members have come together again for the first time in 7 years and made the promise of new music and a world tour.
Of Live’s 7 hit albums featuring Ed as the lead vocalist and songwriter, 1994’s Throwing Copper stands to be the band’s most outstanding, successful recording.
This massive monument in the history of alt-rock has sold over 8 million copies in the US alone and gave rise to the No. 1 radio hits “Lightning Crashes” and “Selling the Drama,” and the Top 10 charting singles “All Over You” and “I Alone.”
“I knew it was special,” Ed says when I called him up to reminisce. “But I couldn’t have known it would spawn the success that it did.”
Throwing Copper launched Live to the forefront of the alternative rock scene and there they reigned like kings of the scene for two decades. Strapping singles like “Lakini’s Juice,” “The Dolphin’s Cry,” “Run to the Water” and “Overcome,” combined with the amount of over 20 million records sold worldwide reinforced Live’s rule.
And now they’re back.
Recalling his glorious career with Live, Ed made a personal playlist of the most significant songs from the band’s catalog.
“I remember coming home with the mix of Throwing Copper on a cassette. I sat outside my apartment and played the record from top to bottom for the first time after recording it. I remember feeling something with ‘Lightning Crashes’ in particular. I remember thinking something special happened there. Not just the writing of the song, but also the way it was recorded. There are some really deep emotions there and it felt like magic.”
“I feel ‘The Distance’ is one of the finer lyrical and melodic moments of my career and it’s one of my favorite songs from the 90s. There’s a harpsichord solo on it and it came out in 1998, 20 years or so after The Doors. If that doesn’t make you want to put it on right now, I don’t know what will.”
Face and Ghost (The Children’s Song)
“‘Face and Ghost’ is also on the album The Distance to Here. There are a few moments on this record where I feel I reached out, passed and hit a different level for myself as an artist. I think it’s quite special.”
“‘T.B.D.’ is off Throwing Copper. It was all about a mood and it was made for no other reason than to be a statement. It was a time period where there was such an explosion of rebellion. There was this tremendous roar. After bands like R.E.M. and Nirvana broke, there was this sense of permission to be who you are and to be authentic. ‘T.B.D.’ wasn’t written to be a single and there is no typical structure. I haven’t done much like this since then, but I’d like to. There’s a lot of freedom in that.”
“I love the video because it’s so strange. Watch it if you haven’t seen it. There isn’t too much out there like it. There were moments in Live’s trajectory when we had total creative freedom to do anything we wanted and that was one of those moments. We were so lucky to have been on Radioactive Records. Gary Kurfirst, God rest his soul, signed our first recording contract and he had the same attitude. It’s a beautiful time in my career that I look back at fondly.”