Once upon a time, a local band called Sweet F.A. rose to the top of the Aqua Net hair metal game, signed to MCA records and lived the rock star life for a few years. Their debut, Stick to Your Guns, garnered them a national audience, a tour and an appearance on MTV. But by the time of their follow-up, Temptation, the nation was in the midst of the grunge explosion, and the glory days were over for metal bands.
Fifteen years later, when Sweet F.A. put up a MySpace page, they almost immediately received several thousand hits from all over the country. Soon, a full-fledged Sweet F.A. Web site was up and running, and requests for live shows started pouring in. So, the original lineup of vocalist Steve DeLong, guitarist James “JT” Thorpe and the baddest rhythm section ever to walk the streets of Indy — including bassist Jim Quiggins and drummer Tricky Lane — decided to book a couple reunion shows. The first of these gigs will take place at Spin in Broad Ripple Nov. 23.
NUVO recently asked Sweet F.A. lead singer Steve DeLong about the upcoming reunion. “A lot of people in the late ’80s/early ’90s — the pre-grunge days — got into music for the same reasons,” he says. “They wanted to escape the shittier side of life. [Then] grunge came along [and] anger and bitterness became the trend. Don’t get me wrong, [there were] lots of great bands and music, but where the fuck did all the fun go? We are going to bring the fun back.”
Coinciding with these reunion concerts is the release of The Lost Tapes, which, as Thorpe explains, “is very much like our first album. It’s actual master tracks from that time that we recorded with [local producer] Jeff Diehl. So they really are ‘lost tapes.’”
“It was an exciting bunch of chaos, done very quick,” DeLong adds. “We didn’t spend a lot of time developing and re-arranging these songs, and I think the simple chaos of those times is audible.”