New wave pioneer Chris Butler will visit Rodman’s Vinyl Club

Described as a seminal new waver, Chris Butler is a musician best known for a few 1980s hits, but he still writes and records with many unique works to his credit.

The Akron-area native will visit the Rodman Public Library on November 16 as a special guest of the Alliance Vinyl Club. Open to all music lovers, the meetup will take place at 6:30 p.m., and Butler will spin some of his favorite records and talk about his career and his music.

Butler, a sociology student at Kent State University, was among a mob of students shot by the Ohio National Guard on May 4, 1970 and was a friend of Jeffrey Miller, one of four students killed that day -the. Butler appeared in several films by KSU film professor Richard Myers and was active in the Kent music scene which spawned bands such as The James Gang, Devo and Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders. Butler played guitar with blues band City Lights, bass with The Numbers Band (aka 15-60-75) and guitar for Tin Huey, before going big with his own musical project – The Waitresses.

Butler was the driving force behind the success of The Waitresses, who recorded two albums, including ‘Wasn’t Tomorrow Wonderful’ and ‘Bruiseology’, as well as two EPs, including ‘I Could Rule the World If Only I Could Get the Parts’ . and “Make Time”. He was the songwriter, producer and guitarist for all of the group’s hits, including “I Know What Boys Like”, which reached No. 23 on the “Billboard” Top Tracks chart and #62 on the “Billboard” Top 100 in 1982. The group is also known for “Christmas Wrappings” and for recording the theme song for the TV show “Square Pegs”.“, which starred Sarah Jessica Parker and aired from 1982 to 1983.

After the Waitresses disbanded in 1984, Butler spent the rest of the decade producing (Freedy Johnston, Scruffy the Cat, Joan Osbourne) and songwriting in hard-earned obscurity, playing drums and writing in freelance for technical and musical magazines.

Butler returned to the music scene in the 1990s with a series of 45s recorded on vintage audio equipment using Edison wax cylinders, 1940s wire recorders, and 1930s home record cutters. .

In 1996 he released “The Devil Glitch”, a 69 minute song with over 500 verses which is listed in the 1998 “Guinness Book of World Records” as the longest pop song in the world.

In 1997 he released “I Feel A Bit Normal Today”, a bent pop CD.

In 2001, Butler released “Un Petit Goûter – The Best of Kilopop!” The original work was a fake “best of” album by a non-existent euro pop band.

In 2002 he released “The Museum of Me”, a collection of audio experiments using old and obsolete recording equipment conducted over 10 years.

In 2014 Butler released “Easy Life” plus “alt.easylife.cd”, a take-home CD. The work was a song cycle based on the murder of four Kent State University students in 1970.

In 2018, Butler collaborated with Ralph Carney (Tin Huey, Tom Waits, B-52s) on “Songs For Unsung Holidays” (Smog Veil), a recording of songs celebrating quirky holidays like Gorilla Suit Day and Salami Appreciation Day.

Butler’s most recent projects include writing and producing two short films, and the new CD titled “Got It Togehter!” He explains that the misspelling of the title is intentional and like… you know… ironic.

Alliance Vinyl Club generally meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month, but meets on the third Wednesday in November due to the Thanksgiving holiday and will meet on the second Wednesday in December due to the Christmas holiday.

Although it’s called a club, there is no formal membership – and no registration required – to participate in group meetings, which provides the opportunity to hang out, listen to music, have good conversation and making new friends.

For more information about Vinyl Club, call 330-821-2665, ext. 216.