Tickle Me PinkView in iTunes
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Tickle Me Pink were formed in Fort Collins, CO, in 2005, but each of the members had extensive musical experience prior to coming together as a group. Sean Kennedy (vocals, bass, guitar) played music for 11 years before founding Tickle Me Pink, studying opera and piano as well as training with classical guitarist Dave Beegle. (Kennedy also released an acoustic solo album in 2006.) Johnny Schou (bass, guitar, vocals) spent time as an assistant engineer at the Blasting Room recording studio and began working with producer Bill Stevenson at the age of 17. Kennedy and Schou recruited drummer Stefan Runstrom, who had played percussion since he was 12, after watching him win a battle of the bands competition. Drawing inspiration for their sound from Third Eye Blind, Brand New, and At the Drive-In, the trio began playing local and regional gigs before bringing aboard a new member. (The decision to round out their sound came after an opening gig for Social Distortion.) Like the other members of Tickle Me Pink, newcomer Steven Beck also had considerable musical experience -- not only had he studied guitar from the age of six, but he also taught at the Academy of Guitar in Fort Collins. After the group independently released the If Only We Were Twenty One and Up and Half Seas Over EPs in 2005 and 2006, Denver radio station KTCL added one of Tickle Me Pink's songs to its rotation, subsequently generating widespread interest in the band. In 2008, Tickle Me Pink signed with Wind-Up Records and issued their debut full-length album, Madeline. Tragically, Johnny Schou was found dead in his Colorado apartment on the morning before Madeline's release. ~ Katherine Fulton