Music / Live

Itís the sun that burns, Itís the wheel that turns.
Itís the way we sing that makes 'em dream.
— "Selling the Drama"

Live is a Alternative Rock band from York, Pennsylvania. Originally formed as Public Affection, the group changed its name to Live after the release of one album. After the modest success of their first album as Live, the group skyrocketed to popularity in 1994 with Throwing Copper, on the strengths of the singles "Selling the Drama", "I Alone", "All Over You", and "Lightning Crashes". Their next two albums were well-received but not as successful, and with their subsequent albums, they slowly dwindled in popularity. Singer Ed Kowalczyk split from the group rather acrimoniously in 2009, and it reformed in late 2011 with new singer Chris Shinn, formerly from Unified Theory.

  • Chad Taylor - Lead guitar, backing vocals
  • Patrick Dahlheimer - Bass
  • Chad Gracey - Drums
  • Chris Shinn - Vocals

Former members
  • Ed Kowalczyk - Vocals
  • Adam Kowalczyk - Rhythm guitar, backing vocals (Unofficial member)

Discography (to date)
  • The Death of a Dictionary (1989, as Public Affection)
  • Four Songs (EP) (1991)
  • Mental Jewelry (1991)
  • Throwing Copper (1994)
  • Secret Samadhi (1997)
  • The Distance to Here (1999)
  • V (2001)
  • Birds of Pray (2003)
  • Songs from Black Mountain (2006)
  • Radiant Sea: A Collection of Bootleg Rarities and Two New Songs (2007)
  • Live at the Paradiso Ė Amsterdam (2008)
  • The Turn (2014)

This band provides examples of the following:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: From "White, Discussion":
    And if the decibels of this disenchanting discourse / Continue to dampen the day
  • Adorkable: Patrick Dalheimer comes off as bit of a goofball in the outtakes. Chris Shinn's "tough" act on stage is sometimes a bit undermined as he overbalances, or gets his feet tangled in the wires, all of which he takes in the stride.
  • All Drummers Are Animals: Chad Gracey's wife calls his on-stage persona "Walter", because he seems to become a completely different man behind the drum-set. While he's big and imposing, he's also currently the most clean-cut looking member of the band.
  • Badass Beard: Chad Taylor and Chris Shinn sport sharply cut, pointed beards that make them look pretty fierce. Patrick Dalheimer has a regular beard.
  • Bald of Awesome: Ed Kowalczyk started shaving his head around the time Throwing Copper was released, which in combination with his dark, heavy eye-brows gave him a stern appearance and made him look much older than he was. Chris Shinn has part of his head shaved, leaving a slicked-back "mohawk" which wouldn't be out of place in a Mad Max film.
  • Chronological Album Title: Vnote 
  • Cluster F-Bomb:
    • "Shit Towne" repeats "Gotta live, gotta live in shit towne" twice in each chorus.
    • "Waitress", while not vitriolic, has enough cursing that it's a wonder it didn't earn Throwing Copper a Parental Advisory sticker.
  • Double Entendre: The first verse of "The Dolphin's Cry".
    The way you're bathed in light reminds me of that night
    God led me down into your rose garden of trust
  • Everyone Went to School Together: The original line-up all did, in York, Pennsylvania. Nowadays, it's everyone except Chris, who's from Ohio.
  • Fanservice with a Smile: ZigZagged in "Waitress":
    Come on baby, leave some change behind
    She was a bitch, but I don't care
    She brought our food out on time
    Wore a funky barrette in her hair
  • Hated Hometown: Patrick, the Chads and Ed all grew up in York, Pennsylvania, in a rather rough neighbourhood with many "crack-heads." Ed in particular was known to constantly badmouth it. York is the Shit Towne being described in that song.
  • Hidden Track:
    • "Horse" on Throwing Copper
    • An untitled track on V, which is essentially a remix of "Deep Enough"
  • I Call It "Vera": Chad Taylor has a Fender Jazzmaster named "Ruby Lou", after his daughter. He's got another guitar named "Scarlet", which is red.
  • Important Haircut: Kowalczyk shaving his head down to a single braid in between the videos for "Selling the Drama" and "I Alone". From then on, their videos started getting really trippy and artsy, at least through the songs from The Distance to Here.
  • Long Runner Line Up: The original four members played together for 20 years, from 1989 to 2009. There were sometimes additional musicians touring with them, but none of these were official members of the band.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Can vary quite a lot, from 1 ("Mirror Song", "Overcome") to 6 ("Stage", "Lakini's Juice").
  • Performance Video: All of their videos to one degree or another.
  • Precision F-Strike: "Stage", "Freaks", "Voodoo Lady", and "People Like You" all drop one or two pointed F-bombs, although in all but "Voodoo Lady" (where the lyric is a quote from her), they're rather gratuitous and out-of-the-blue.
    • Ed would also regularly insert the f-word in live performances of "Lakini's Juice".
  • Reincarnation:
    • "Lightning Crashes" strongly implies that the 'old mother' who has just died has been reincarnated as the baby just born 'down the hall'.
    • The band itself has been "reincarnated" with Chris Shinn taking over as the lead singer, and the return to the rougher sound of their early days.
  • Surreal Music Video: "I Alone", "Lakini's Juice", "Freaks" and the alternate version of "Turn My Head".
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Ed Kowalczyk was very fond of either wearing open shirts or no shirt at all.
  • War Is Hell: "What Are We Fighting For?"
    The world got smaller but the bombs got bigger
    Holocaust on a hairpin trigger
    Ain't no game so forget the score
    What are we fighting for
  • A Wild Rapper Appears: Tricky contributes a rapped breakdown to "Simple Creed" - around the same time, Ed Kowalczyk sang on Tricky's "Evolution Revolution Love".
  • Word Salad Lyrics: Several songs, especially on Secret Samadhi.
    • Word of God has said that they wrote the lyrics while in Jamaica after they "got a little friendly with the local gardener". This could be true for most of the songs; however, not for "Freaks" as it was performed live as early as 1994, a whole 3 years before the album was released.
  • Younger Than They Look: As of 2015 the band members are only in their early- to mid-fourties. Patrick Dalheimer and Ed Kowalczyk looked older than they were from the beginning, while Chad Taylor has aged himself with a Badass Beard.