Squirrel Nut Zippers' Tom Maxwell in conversation with Chad Radford - A Really Strange and Wonderful Time

Squirrel Nut Zippers' Tom Maxwell in conversation with Chad Radford - A Really Strange and Wonderful Time

Friday, Apr 26, 2024 5:30 PM

Criminal Records
1154-A Euclid Avenue, NE
Atlanta, Georgia 30307

The first biography of the thriving and influential rock scene in Chapel Hill, which gave the world artists like Ben Folds Five, Superchunk, and Squirrel Nut Zippers.

Criminal Records and A Cappella Books are delighted to welcome author and Squirrel Nut Zippers frontman Tom Maxwell for a talk on his new book, "A Really Strange and Wonderful Time: The Chapel Hill Music Scene: 1989-1999," on Friday, April 26, at 5:30 PM. Maxwell will speak with RadATL's Chad Radford, music journalist and author of "Atlanta Record Stores: An Oral History." The talk will be followed by a short, live performance and signing.

This event is free and open to the public. Copies of "A Really Strange and Wonderful Time" will be available for purchase at the store.

About the Book

North Carolina has always produced extraordinary music of every description. But the indie rock boom of the late 1980s and early '90s brought the state most fully into the public consciousness, while the subsequent post-grunge free-for-all bestowed its greatest commercial successes. In addition to the creation of legacy label Merge Records and a slate of excellent indie bands like Superchunk, Archers of Loaf, and Polvo, this was the decade when other North Carolina artists broke Billboard's Top 200 and sold millions of records—several million of which were issued by another indie label based in Carrboro, Chapel Hill's smaller next-door neighbor. It's time to take a closer look at exactly what happened.

"A Really Strange and Wonderful Time" features a representative cross-section of what was being created in and around Chapel Hill between 1989 and 1999. In addition to the aforementioned indie bands, it documents—through firsthand accounts—other local notables like Ben Folds Five, Dillon Fence, Flat Duo Jets, Small, Southern Culture on the Skids, The Veldt, and Whiskeytown. At the same time, it describes the nurturing infrastructure which engendered and encouraged this marvelous diversity. In essence, "A Really Strange and Wonderful Time" is proof of the genius of community.

About the Author

Tom Maxwell is a writer and musician. A product of the fertile Chapel Hill music scene, he was a member of the Squirrel Nut Zippers from 1994 to 1999. Tom's song "Hell" peaked at Number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100, propelling the band to multi-platinum status. His songs have appeared in dozens of movies and television shows, including a Super Bowl commercial, an Academy Award–nominated documentary, and a Tony Award–winning soundtrack. He has also scored for movies, television, and commercials. Maxwell's writing has appeared in Slate, Salon, Longreads, The Bitter Southerner, Our State Magazine, College Music Journal, Southern Cultures, The Oxford American, and The Library of Congress, among other places. He is a member of the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame.