As I work toward bringing together the reissue of Roger C. Reale’s Radioactive and its unreleased followup LP, I’m reminded of this CD I compiled way back in 2001. There are similarities – both Connecticut acts recorded at Trod Nossel studios, both had catalogs mired in hard feelings and missed opportunities. As a third party, my job in both cases was to acknowledge the issues that kept the music locked away, but to find a way to transcend those issues and get the music out there.
I first heard The Wildweed’s hit No Good To Cry via The Reducers. We were recording what would become their Shinola LP at Trod Nossel. Not aware of all the studio history, the band mentioned that one of the song’s they were recording took its rhythmic inspiration from The Wildweeds track, recorded in the very same room. I investigated and soon after started collecting all of The Wildweeds original 45s I could find. Later on I realized the 45s would compile into a great LP, unaware that there was a treasure trove of unreleased material that would eventually fill out the compilation CD.
In 2001 I pitched the idea of a Wildweeds compilation to Michael Shelley, who was starting up a record label with Dean Brownrout, of Big Deal Records fame. In the case of The Wildweeds, the timing was right to license the music for release, but thirty year old grudges kept us from getting access to images, interviews and cooperation of the band members. Persistence, patience and a genuine desire to present the music in its best possible light paid off. Michael and I set up a sit-down reunion with the band and they shared plenty of laughs and many, many stories. Along with their terrific music, the package we put together presented their story, pictures and memories with the honesty and integrity The Wildweeds deserved.
Unfortunately the Confidential Wildweeds CD is now out of print. I’ve made overtures to put out another issue of The Wildweeds tracks but as with all things, patience, persistence and maybe a little luck will win out.