Television (band)

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Television (band)_table_infobox_0

TelevisionTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_0_0
Background informationTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_1_0
OriginTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_2_0 New York City, New York, U.S.Television (band)_cell_0_2_1
GenresTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_3_0 Television (band)_cell_0_3_1
Years activeTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_4_0 Television (band)_cell_0_4_1
LabelsTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_5_0 Television (band)_cell_0_5_1
Associated actsTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_6_0 Television (band)_cell_0_6_1
MembersTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_8_0 Television (band)_cell_0_8_1
Past membersTelevision (band)_header_cell_0_10_0 Television (band)_cell_0_10_1

Television is an American rock band from New York City, most notably active in the 1970s. Television (band)_sentence_0

The group was founded by Tom Verlaine, Richard Lloyd, Billy Ficca, and Richard Hell. Television (band)_sentence_1

An early fixture of CBGB and the 1970s New York rock scene, the band is considered influential in the development of punk and alternative music. Television (band)_sentence_2

Although they recorded in a stripped-down, guitar-based manner similar to their punk contemporaries, Television's music was by comparison clean, improvisational, and technically proficient, drawing influence from avant-garde jazz and 1960s rock. Television (band)_sentence_3

The group's debut album, Marquee Moon, is often considered one of the defining releases of the post-punk era. Television (band)_sentence_4

History Television (band)_section_0

Early history and formation Television (band)_section_1

Television's roots can be traced to the teenage friendship between Tom Verlaine and Richard Hell. Television (band)_sentence_5

The duo met at Sanford School in Hockessin, Delaware, from which they ran away. Television (band)_sentence_6

Both moved to New York, separately, in the early 1970s, aspiring to be poets. Television (band)_sentence_7

Their first group together was the Neon Boys, consisting of Verlaine on guitar and vocals, Hell on bass and vocals and Billy Ficca on drums. Television (band)_sentence_8

The group lasted from late 1972 to late 1973. Television (band)_sentence_9

A 7-inch record featuring "That's All I Know (Right Now)" and "Love Comes in Spurts" was released in 1980. Television (band)_sentence_10

In late 1973 the group reformed, calling themselves Television and recruiting Richard Lloyd as a second guitarist. Television (band)_sentence_11

Their first gig was at the Townhouse Theatre, on March 2, 1974. Television (band)_sentence_12

Their manager, Terry Ork, persuaded CBGB owner Hilly Kristal to give the band a regular gig at his club, where they reportedly constructed their first stage. Television (band)_sentence_13

After playing several gigs at CBGB in early 1974, they played at Max's Kansas City and other clubs, returning to CBGB in January 1975, where they established a significant cult following. Television (band)_sentence_14

Departure of Richard Hell and debut release Television (band)_section_2

Initially, songwriting was split almost evenly between Hell and Verlaine, Lloyd being an infrequent contributor as well. Television (band)_sentence_15

However, friction began to develop as Verlaine, Lloyd, and Ficca became increasingly confident and adept with both instruments and composition, while Hell remained defiantly untrained in his approach. Television (band)_sentence_16

Verlaine, feeling that Hell's frenzied onstage demeanor was upstaging his songs, reportedly told him to "stop jumping around" during the songs and occasionally refused to play Hell's songs, such as "Blank Generation", in concert. Television (band)_sentence_17

This conflict, as well as one of their songs being picked up by Island Records, led Hell to leave the group and take some of his songs with him. Television (band)_sentence_18

He co-founded the Heartbreakers in 1975 with former New York Dolls Johnny Thunders and Jerry Nolan, later forming Richard Hell and the Voidoids. Television (band)_sentence_19

Fred Smith, briefly of Blondie, replaced Hell as Television's bassist. Television (band)_sentence_20

Television made their vinyl debut in 1975 with "Little Johnny Jewel" (Parts One and Two), a 7-inch single on the independent label Ork Records, owned by their manager, Terry Ork. Television (band)_sentence_21

Richard Lloyd apparently disagreed with the selection of this song, preferring "O Mi Amore" for their debut, to the extent that he seriously considered leaving the band. Television (band)_sentence_22

Reportedly Pere Ubu guitarist Peter Laughner auditioned for his spot during this time. Television (band)_sentence_23

Marquee Moon, Adventure and break-up (1977–78) Television (band)_section_3

Television's first album, Marquee Moon, was received positively by music critics and audiences and entered the Billboard 200 albums chart – it also sold well in Europe and reached the Top 30 in many countries there. Television (band)_sentence_24

Upon its initial release in 1977, Roy Trakin wrote in the SoHo Weekly "forget everything you've heard about Television, forget punk, forget New York, forget CBGB's ... hell, forget rock and roll—this is the real item." Television (band)_sentence_25

Critics have since ranked the album number 83 on cable music channel VH1's 2000 list of the 100 Greatest Albums of Rock and Roll and number 128 on Rolling Stone's 2003 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. Television (band)_sentence_26

It was ranked number two in Uncut magazine's "100 Greatest Debut Records" and number 3 on Pitchfork Media's list of the best albums of the 1970s. Television (band)_sentence_27

Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic writes that the album was "revolutionary" and composed "entirely of tense garage rockers that spiral into heady intellectual territory, which is achieved through the group's long, interweaving instrumental sections." Television (band)_sentence_28

Television's second album, Adventure, was recorded and released in 1978. Television (band)_sentence_29

Softer and more reflective than their debut album, Adventure was well received by critics despite modest sales. Television (band)_sentence_30

The members' independent and strongly held artistic visions, along with Richard Lloyd's drug abuse, led to the band's break-up in July 1978. Television (band)_sentence_31

Both Lloyd and Verlaine pursued solo careers, while Ficca became the drummer for the new wave band The Waitresses. Television (band)_sentence_32

Reformation (1992–present) Television (band)_section_4

Television reformed in 1992, released a self-titled third album and have performed live sporadically thereafter. Television (band)_sentence_33

Since being wooed back on stage together for the 2001 All Tomorrow's Parties festival at Camber Sands, England, they've played a number of dates around the world and continue to perform on an irregular basis. Television (band)_sentence_34

In 2007, Richard Lloyd announced he would be amicably leaving the band after a midsummer show in New York City's Central Park. Television (band)_sentence_35

Due to an extended hospital stay recovering from pneumonia, he was unable to make the Central Park concert. Television (band)_sentence_36

Jimmy Rip substituted for him that day and was subsequently asked to join the band full-time in Lloyd's place. Television (band)_sentence_37

On July 7, 2011, the new lineup performed at the Beco 203 music festival in São Paulo, Brazil. Television (band)_sentence_38

In an MTV Brazil Television interview, the band confirmed that an album with about ten new tracks was close to being finished, but as of 2020, that album has not surfaced. Television (band)_sentence_39

Musical style and influences Television (band)_section_5

As with many emerging punk bands, the Velvet Underground was a strong influence. Television (band)_sentence_40

Television also drew inspiration from minimalist composers such as Steve Reich. Television (band)_sentence_41

Tom Verlaine has often cited the influence of surf bands the Ventures and Dick Dale to Television's approach to the guitar, and he has also expressed a fondness for the bands Love and Buffalo Springfield, two groups noted for their dual-guitar interplay. Television (band)_sentence_42

Television's ties to punk were underscored by their late '60s garage rock leanings, as the band often covered the Count Five's "Psychotic Reaction" and the 13th Floor Elevators' "Fire Engine" in concert. Television (band)_sentence_43

Lester Bangs heard in Television's music the influence of Quicksilver Messenger Service, noting a similarity between Verlaine's guitar playing and John Cipollina's. Television (band)_sentence_44

Tom Verlaine has downplayed the comparison, citing the Ventures as a more apt reference point. Television (band)_sentence_45

Though Verlaine and Lloyd were nominally "rhythm" and "lead" guitarists, they often rendered such labels obsolete by crafting interlocking parts, where the ostensible rhythm role could be as intriguing as the lead. Television (band)_sentence_46

Al Handa writes, "In Television's case, Lloyd was the guitarist who affected the tonality of the music more often than not, and Verlaine and the rhythm section the ones who gave the ear its anchor and familiar musical elements. Television (band)_sentence_47

Listen only to Lloyd, and you can hear some truly off the wall ideas being played." Television (band)_sentence_48

The opening of the song "Marquee Moon" from the album of the same name displays the band's characteristic interlocking melodic and rhythmic guitar lines. Television (band)_sentence_49

Members Television (band)_section_6

Current Television (band)_sentence_50

Television (band)_unordered_list_0

  • Tom Verlaine – vocals, guitar, keyboards (1973–present)Television (band)_item_0_0
  • Billy Ficca – drums (1973–present)Television (band)_item_0_1
  • Fred Smith – bass, vocals (1975–present)Television (band)_item_0_2
  • Jimmy Rip – guitar (2007–present)Television (band)_item_0_3

Former members Television (band)_sentence_51

Television (band)_unordered_list_1

  • Richard Lloyd – guitar, vocals (1973–2007)Television (band)_item_1_4
  • Richard Hell – vocals, bass (1973–1975)Television (band)_item_1_5

Discography Television (band)_section_7

Studio albums Television (band)_sentence_52

Television (band)_unordered_list_2

  • Marquee Moon (1977) #92 AUS, #23 Sweden, #28 UKTelevision (band)_item_2_6
  • Adventure (1978) #7 UKTelevision (band)_item_2_7
  • Television (1992)Television (band)_item_2_8

Live albums Television (band)_sentence_53

Television (band)_unordered_list_3

  • The Blow-Up (1982)Television (band)_item_3_9
  • Live at the Academy, 1992 (2003)Television (band)_item_3_10
  • Live at the Old Waldorf (2003)Television (band)_item_3_11

Compilation albums Television (band)_sentence_54

Television (band)_unordered_list_4

  • The Best of Television & Tom Verlaine (1998)Television (band)_item_4_12

Singles Television (band)_sentence_55

Television (band)_unordered_list_5

  • "Little Johnny Jewel, Part One" b/w "Little Johnny Jewel, Part Two" (1975)Television (band)_item_5_13
  • "Marquee Moon Part 1" b/w "Marquee Moon Part 2" (1977) #30 UKTelevision (band)_item_5_14
  • "Marquee Moon (Stereo)" b/w "Marquee Moon (Mono)" (1977)Television (band)_item_5_15
  • "Prove It" b/w "Venus" (1977) #25 UKTelevision (band)_item_5_16
  • "Foxhole" b/w "Careful" (1978) #36 UKTelevision (band)_item_5_17
  • "Glory" b/w "Carried Away" (1978)Television (band)_item_5_18
  • "Ain't That Nothin'" b/w "Glory" (1978)Television (band)_item_5_19
  • "Call Mr. Lee" (1992) #27 Billboard Modern Rock TracksTelevision (band)_item_5_20

Filmography Television (band)_section_8

Television (band)_unordered_list_6

Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: (band).