2012 WNCX Hall Of Fame Inductee – Boston

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Boston

Band Members:
Tom Scholz (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards, percussion)
Gary Pihl (rhythm and lead guitar, keyboards, backing vocals)
Barry Goudreau (guitars and backing vocals)
Brad Delp (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards, percussion)
Jim Masdea (drums, percussion, keyboards)
Sib Hashian (drums, percussion, backing vocals)
Fran Sheehan (bass guitar)

Years: 1976–Present

Top 40 Singles (US):
1976: “More than a Feeling” #5
1977: “Peace of Mind” #38
1977: “Long Time” #22
1978: “Don’t Look Back” #4
1986: “Amanda” #1
1987: “We’re Ready” #9
1987: “Cant’cha Say (You Believe In Me)/Still In Love” #20

About:
Founding member, Tom Scholz, began writing music in the late 1960s while seeking a master’s degree at MIT. Scholz met guitarist Barry Goudreau, vocalist Brad Delp and drummer Jim Masdea during his stint with the band “Freehold.” The quartet recorded professional in-studio demo tapes which initially received rejection from record companies.

Scholz self-designed guitar pedals in order to create a desired, signature sound. This innovative new demo tape attracted promoters Paul Ahern and Charlie McKenzie. Masdea left the group around this time which left Delp and Scholz to sign a deal with Epic Records as a duo. To finalize the record deal, Scholz and Delp needed a full band for an audition. The duo enlisted guitarist Barry Goudreau, bassist Fran Sheehan, and drummer Sib Hashian in order to effectively perform Scholz’s rich layering live on stage. This showcase was a success and the group agreed to ten albums over the next six years.

Boston’s self-titled debut release dropped on August 8, 1976 and was instantly an enormous success. Record rankings prove Boston to be the best-selling album in U.S. history by going seventeen times Platinum and selling over 17,000,000 copies. The album peaked at number three on the Billboard Top 200 and remained there for 132 weeks. Three singles came from the debut: “More than a Feeling,” “Peace of Mind,” and “Long Time.” After opening for Black Sabbath, Blue Öyster Cult, and Foghat, Boston embarked on a headlining tour in the winter of 1976 and spring of 1977 in order to support this new album.

Boston’s sophomore album, Don’t Look Back, was released in August of 1978 with recording production done at the hands of Scholz alone. Two years after Boston’s drop, Scholz reluctantly released Don’t Look Back stating the album was too rushed. The second album did about half as well as the debut, only selling just over seven million records. The album gained more recognition after its supporting tour, but despite the success of the group, Scholz’s relationship with manager Paul Ahern had almost completely deteriorated.

The late 1970s through mid-1980s was detrimentally tumultuous for Boston. Scholz demanded to write new material, however, at his own pace and not that of management or record label restriction. This personal artistic demand spawned a $60 million lawsuit from CBS against Scholz for breach of contract and failure of an album release on time. Legal troubles slowed future album production, leaving a six year gap before the third album, Third Stage, was dropped on September 23, 1986.

Upon producing Walk On, Boston’s fourth studio album, Delp departed in the spring of 1990 to concentrate on other projects which left Scholz as the only remaining original member. Walk On released in June of 1994 and was certified Platinum. It was the first album not to break Billboard’s Top 5, like all the other previous releases. In late 1994 Delp reunited with Boston.

Corporate America is Boston’s fifth studio album released in November 2002 featuring the largest group line-up ever. New members included Anthony Cosmo on rhythm guitar, Jeff Neal on drums, and Kimberley Dahme on bass and vocals. National touring in support of the album ensued in 2003 and would carry throughout 2004. Brad Delp committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning at his New Hampshire home on March 9, 2007. A concert in his memory, Come Together: A Tribute to Brad Delp, took place in Boston on August 19, 2007 at the Bank of America Pavilion. Scholz debuted a new Boston Line-up in the spring of 2008 with a subsequent North American tour, playing 53 dates in 12 weeks with Styx. Boston is still active with a 2012 North American tour and hopes for a new album sometime in 2013.

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