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Big Star to be feted by members of REM, Posies, Aimee Mann, others

Big Star (music group)
Big Star's "#1 Record" and "Third" to be performed by band including members of REM, dBs, Posies, Aimee Mann
Big Star tribute at Wilshire Ebell to feature all star band, singers, Alex Chilton-esque grimness

With each passing year, the legacy of Memphis guitar pop band Big Star grows as new generations get tipped to, and inevitably fall in love with, the band's classic three albums. Records that resonate as much today as when released in the 1970s, "#1 Record," "Radio City" and "Third/Sister Lovers" are lovely, sweet post-Beatles guitar pop records driven by a central tension: Collaborators Alex Chilton and Chris Bell were both battling, and driven to explore, thematically dark places while longing for first-crush exuberance.  

Those who never saw Chilton play Big Star songs before his death in 2010 have a chance for a close brush on Saturday, September 27, when Big Star co-founder Jody Stephens, Big Star touring members Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow of the Posies, the dBs' Chris Stamey, guitarist Mitch Easter (Let's Active, "Murmur" producer) and others team to perform two of the band's albums, "#1 Record" and "Third" in their entirety.

Joining said backing band will be a wildcard's worth of guest vocalists including Aimee Mann, Dan Wilson, Pete Yorn, Dean Wareham, actor/musician Jason Schwartzman and members of Grouplove and the Bangles. Adding the essential, minor key strings will be the Section Quartet. 

The show, which will take place at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre, is a benefit for the Autism Thinktank, and is presented by Trunkworthy and Wild Honey. Ticket information can be found at the Wilshire Ebell's website. 

Your advance reading: Holly George Warren's fantastic, heartbreaking recent Alex Chilton biography is called "A Man Called Destruction," and is well worth your time. 

Follow Randall Roberts on Twitter: @liledit

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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