Music News

The Smart Studios Story: A Film About the Rise of Alt Rock in the Midwest US at Butch Vig’s Madison WI HQ

Beginning on Thursday, September 29, The Smart Studios Story begins a screening tour across the United States as a precursor to the DVD and accompanying vinyl release on Friday November 25, Record Store Day Black Friday. This official film of Record Store Day traces the roots and rise of independent music in the US to an early recording hub in the Midwest’s underground scene, Smart Studios. The legendary studio, founded by Butch Vig and Steve Marker, became a pillar of the global alternative rock sound.

The film’s companion vinyl, American Noise Volume 1, is the first of a series with each vinyl release including artists featured in the film. This vinyl features iconic tracks recorded at Smart Studios such as early works by Killdozer, Tar Babies, and Die Kreuzen, as well as Vig’s first band, Spooner.

The Smart Studios Story draws on in-depth-interviews with musicians and producers, never-before-seen archival footage and a powerful soundtrack. It tells the story of the Midwestern US link to the global rise of alternative rock in the 1990’s and the recording studio in Madison, Wisconsin at the heart of it all.

You can watch a just-released clip featuring Billy Corgan here, from the Rolling Stone.

For more information and to buy tickets visit The Smart Studios Story website.

Principal Cast
Butch Vig
Steve Marker
Dave Grohl
Billy Corgan
Shirley Manson
Donita Sparks
Jimmy Chamberlin
Doug “The Duke” Erikson
Chris Walla
Tom Hazelmyer

Tour Dates
9/29: Milwaukee, WI @ Oriental Theatre
10/3: Cleveland, OH @ The Grog Shop
10/4: Athens, OH @ The Union
10/5: Columbus, OH @ Gateway Film Center
10/6: Chicago, IL @ Brew & View at The Vic
10/7: Detroit, MI @ El Club
10/17: Austin, TX @ The North Door
10/18: Houston, TX @ The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
10/19: New Orleans, LA @ Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center
10/20: Hot Springs, AR @ Low Key Arts
10/22: Los Angeles, CA @ Echoplex
10/23: Dallas, TX @ The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
10/23: Long Beach, CA @Frida Cinema
10/24: El Paso, TX @ The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
11/11: Boston, MA @ Brattle Theater
11/13: Brooklyn, NY @ St Vitus
11/14: Washington, DC @ Black Cat
11/15: Philadelphia, PA @ MOCCA
11/22: Durham, NC @ Motorco (Tentative)
11/27: Madison, WI @ Sundance at Hilldale

American Noise Volume 1 Track Listing
Side One
1) Appliances – “Bob Hope”
2) Killdozer – “Ed Gein”
3) Tar Babies – “Wasted Words”
4) Die Kreuzen – “Holes”
5) Cattleprod – “Don’t Mind Walking”
6) Poop Shovel – “One Pass Away”
7) Rectal Drip – “Naïve Folk Singer”
Side Two
1) Ivory Library – “Through You”
2) Fun With Atoms – “Last Cigarette”
3) Other Kids – “Madtown”
4) Spooner – “Borderline”
5) The Weeds Easy – “On The Eye”
6) Singing Irishman – “Thanks a Million”

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