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Crazy 8's

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The Crazy 8's were one of the most hard-working and energetic American ska groups in the '80s; however, they broke up a few years before record labels probably would've finally seen their commercial potential. Formed by Todd Duncan (vocals) in Corvallis, OR, in 1984, the Crazy 8's released their debut album, Law & Order, on their own label, Redrum. The Crazy 8's gigged constantly in the Pacific Northwest, especially in Portland, OR, and Seattle, WA. "Johnny Q" and "Law & Order" began receiving massive airplay on college radio stations; however, the band's rollicking blend of ska, punk, and funk generated little interest from major labels. Two of the most popular ska revivalists, the Specials and the English Beat, had already fallen by the time the Crazy 8's joined the party. The group's second full-length, 1985's Nervous in Suburbia, further expanded the band's cult following. Nevertheless, throughout the '80s the Crazy 8's were never given the opportunity to transform their regional popularity into national stardom. In 1993, the Crazy 8's turned off the lights and closed the door. But after the Top 40 success of No Doubt introduced a new generation of listeners to ska in the mid-'90s, people started discovering their records. In the late '90s, the Crazy 8's played a number of farewell concerts and compiled their catchiest tracks on Still Crazy After All These Beers. ~ Michael Sutton

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