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The Real Kids

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Album Review

In the late '70s through the early '80s, the Real Kids were Boston's original rock & roll slop band. Fronted by John Felice, main songwriter and guiding spirit, the Real Kids ran on equal parts adolescent rivalry, drugs, and as much beer as they could consume. When Felice wanted to tear up a club with his rockin' originals or his favorite rock & roll tunes (equally adept at both), the Kids could be a thing of raw beauty to watch and hear. When Felice wasn't in the mood, he could play pissed-off rock star to the max and the results were desultory at best. This Norton CD, however, catches them early in the ball game, their debut album for the tiny Red Star label with all the great John Felice tunes like "All Kindsa Girls," "Taxi Boys" (which later became the name of an offshoot group that recorded for Dave Pierce's Star Rhythm imprint, the label that also issued the second [or last, depending on how you're keeping score] Real Kids album), "My Baby's Book," and "Better Be Good" along with spirited covers of Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran material just to give you the big picture. Perhaps the Real Kids were just too undisciplined to make it big; maybe the drugs and the booze got in the way of the creativity. Alas, it's an old story, but Felice's reputation over in Europe continues to earn high marks and rumors abound that new material is on the way. In the meantime, check this one out — close your eyes and you'll swear you've been transported back to the late '70s at CBGB's. Like their name, these guys were for real.


Formed: 1972 in Boston, MA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s

First appearing at Boston clubs in the early '70s, the Real Kids would eventually become a local institution by 1977, but a lack of real sales would lead to a breakup, a re-formation, and a more complete breakup -- all within six years. However regional and fleeting the Real Kids' success was, they were pivotal enough to influence many in the Boston rock scene, as well as spin off into a number of other acts, and they gained enough support to garner reunion shows well into the dawn of the 21st century....
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The Real Kids, The Real Kids
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