The Last Goodnight
Enfield, Connecticut isn't exactly a musical mecca, but the tiny New England city has spawned pop rock act the Last Goodnight, who have just scored their first ink on the Billboard charts.Enfield, Connecticut isn't exactly a musical mecca, but the tiny New England city has spawned pop rock act the Last Goodnight, who have just scored their first ink on the Billboard charts. With their major label debut on the horizon, the six-piece troupe's "Pictures of You" advances 40-37 this week on the Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks tally.
"We grew up close to both Boston and New York," frontman Kurtis John says of Enfield. "Not only were we one of the few bands in town that played original music, but we could drive either place to find shows. We'd save our pennies from our dumb day jobs and hit the road." Eventually the group signed to Capitol/Virgin allowing John to quit his gig at TGIFriday's entirely.
The Last Goodnight, whose size contributes to its epic sound, grew out of high school friendships between John (piano, vocals) and fellow Enfield natives Mike Nadeau (guitar), Leif Christensen (bass) and multi-instrumentalist Anton Yurack. Drummer Larone McMillan and keyboardist Ely Rise round out the large group.
"I don't think it's a 'too many cooks in the kitchen' scenario," John says. "I'm the primary songwriter and Mike and Ely help flesh those ideas out. At the end of the day, we all punch in our contributions. We have a job to do, so it helps that we're all friends with each other."
The band's "job" over the last year has been completing "Poison Kiss." Due Aug. 28, the album is comprised of 12 tracks whittled down from an "organized chaos" of 120 songs, many of which were composed on piano. John adopted an affinity for the instrument from his father, a musician who picked up tunes by ear for a very specific reason. "My dad was blind starting from before I was born," John explains. "Other kids bonded with their dads playing sports. He and I would just listen to records and jam together."
John's soulful, melodic vocals can also be attributed to his upbringing, pouring over records from Etta James to Guns 'N Roses.
As "Poison Kiss" nears release, the Last Goodnight are out on an extensive North American tour, which runs through early September. Dates can be found at the band's Web site. Fans can also look forward to a tour with a "pretty big-name act" this fall.