FAT OPIE featuring Scott Mickelson
This year San Francisco band FAT OPIE celebrates twenty years and more than five full-length records. Lead by singer/songwriter Scott Mickelson, they continue to paint both musical and lyrical portraits of contemporary life as an American. Known for varied instrumentations, and far-reaching production they continue to have a finger on the pulse of the fragmented culture here in the US. This is most evident in their latest release Victoryville already being hailed as their most important record.
Their debut CD Biscuits was recorded and mixed at The Plant Studios during the Thanksgiving weekend of 1994. This grunge rock record gained them a management deal with Lookout Management (Neil Young). The follow up release Hipsters, Freaks, Fags & Homeboys (1995) introduced the banjo, which is now a significant part of their sound. This, combined with their rock sensibility, brought FAT OPIE well deserved national recognition. The alternative rock CD Airstream (1999) triggered some of their biggest successes including the song "Bullets in My Briefcase" which won a national band search sponsored by 7UP/Sonicnet (MTV). This included a prize of $15,000. Also the song "Mouth Like a Trucker" was featured in the motion picture Along The Way. In 2002, the band downsized to the trio we see today and they released the stripped-down, acoustic CD Otis.
Then the music stopped for several years when singer/songwriter Scott Mickelson became seriously ill. During that time bassist Robin Hildebrant began building his own home recording studio. In 2008, Mickelson, Hildebrant and Tavel tracked two new singles the first of which "New Orleans", led to an international distribution deal and a re-release of their growing catalogue. In 2010 they began performing again and began the work on Victoryville.