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Big Star (music group)
Alex Chilton's reckless abandon in life and music
Alex Chilton's reckless abandon in life and music

Most musicians would trade their soul for a No. 1 record and go on to carry that success like a trophy. So it's a measure of the late Alex Chilton's craft and personality that he's less defined by "The Letter," the 1967 guitar-pop gem by his band the Box Tops that hit when he was 16, than by the commercial failures that came after. Rather, he's best known as the co-founder of the Memphis band Big Star, whose classic three records released from 1972 to 1978 have grown into some of the most acclaimed of that era. Remembered for songs such as "September Gurls," "Holocaust" and "In the Street," the latter of which served as the theme song to "That '70s Show," Chilton is a stubborn, oft-...

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