Scarce

The tragic story of Scarce began in 1993 with singer/guitarist Chick Graning and singer/bassist Joyce Raskin. After the breakup of the Boston band Anastasia Screamed, Graning had moved to Providence, RI, to live with then-fiancee Tanya Donnelly of Belly, and he met Raskin, who attended the Rhode Island School of Design. The two began to write songs together itself in both the Northeast United States and England with their exhausting live shows. While most bands of the time performed in whatever clothes they were wearing that day (that was why it was called grunge, after all), Scarce performed with Raskin in a prom dress and Graning in a black suit or gold lame tuxedo, both energetically bounding across the stage. Scarce quickly became the subject of a major-label bidding war, although their signing was postponed by legal problems Graning had with his previous band's U.K. label. In the meantime, Scarce put out three singles (later collected on the independently released Red EP) before finally signing to A&M in late 1994, around the time Graning and Donnelly broke up their relationship.

Ehrbar then left the group to form his own band, the Space Needle, and Scarce recorded its debut album with Boston session drummer Mike Levesque. The album was released in England in June 1995 with a U.S. release shortly to follow, when Graning failed to show up for practice one day. Raskin and Levesque went to his Providence home, and after kicking the door down, discovered Graning on the floor unconscious. He was rushed to the hospital, where it was discovered that he had suffered a near-fatal brain hemorrhage. The American release of the album was postponed and the single "Honeysimple" was pulled, and Graning then spent the next nine months re-learning how to walk, how to talk, and then how to play his guitar and sing his songs. Once he had recovered, the band added new drummer Joe Propatier and re-recorded much of Deadsexy. When the album was finally released in the United States a year later, it boasted new tracks with Propatier on drums and a new song order. After his hemorrhage, however, Graning found that he and Raskin had drifted apart both musically and emotionally. Shortly after the U.S. release of Deadsexy, in October 1996, the band broke up. Graning later began a solo career. ~ Aaron Schatz