"We were 25 years ahead of our time. We're playing now to see if anyone has caught up," laughed Dave Fulton, founding member of The Last Four (4) Digits.
Pioneers of the New Wave scene in Indiana, writing their own songs and playing music like no one had heard before, The Last Four (4) Digits morphed out of the late '70s punk band Joint Chiefs of Staff. Second Time Around Record Store in Broad Ripple was their home base, but they played wherever they could, including gigs at fraternity parties - a 1980 Sigma Nu House show at Purdue is dubbed the Sigma Nu-wave House show.
The Last Four (4) Digits broke up, but later reunited as The Last Four (5) Digits. An East Coast tour in 1982 found them playing CBGB, scoring the slot by winning the talent night contest. For the show, which fell on the night of Saint Valentine's Day, the band modified the lyrics to "Coughing Up Blood (On Your Birthday)" to include the much more romantic line, "Coughing up blood on Valentine's Day." What's more, Marky Ramone was in the audience that night.
Last Four (5) Digits wrapped up the successful tour (if you don't count a purse snatching at a pizza shop in NYC and a wrecked car on the turnpike on the way home) by headlining a show at the Vogue. A punk show at the Vogue was so noteworthy that a local TV station sent reporters to cover the event live from the sidewalk. The group celebrated the show by disbanding, eventually coming back together as Weird Jimmy Hoffa.
The Last Four (4) Digits will be playing as The Last Digit with four of the original members: Fulton, Mike Sheets, Julie Huffaker and John Koss. Not resting on their formidable reputation, the group has been working on new material, including a live mash-up of the E-In Brino (Paul Mahern, Marvin Goldstein, Bam Bam and Spliff) song "Indianapolis" and The Last Four (4) Digits song "City Streets."