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The Shivvers

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The roots of Milwaukee power pop outfit the Shivvers lie in In a Hot Coma, one of a series of local bands pairing bassist Scott Krueger and drummer Jim Richardson -- Krueger's girlfriend, aspiring singer/songwriter Jill Kossoris, also played keyboards with the group in its final months. After In a Hot Coma split in 1978, Krueger formed the Orbits while Richardson signed on with local punk unit the Lubricants -- meanwhile, Kossoris teamed with guitarist Mike Pyle to form the Shivvers, and when their respective bands dissolved, Krueger and Richardson joined the lineup as well. Guitarist Jim Eannelli completed the Shivvers' roster, which honed a repertoire of pop classics both familiar and obscure -- Kossoris' originals rounded out the set list, and the group soon entered the studio to record her "Teen Line," issued on the Fliptop label in 1980. In addition to gigs in support of the Romantics and Iggy Pop, the Shivvers earned the endorsement of one of their heroes, ex-Raspberries frontman Eric Carmen, who even expressed his desire to produce their planned LP. After Eannelli resigned, former Orbits guitarist Breck Burns signed on in time for readers of the Milwaukee Journal to name the Shivvers' the city's best band of 1982 -- at this point the group began mulling a move to a larger market like New York or Los Angeles, ultimately settling on Boston instead. After a handful of final hometown gigs, Pyle and Richardson packed up and relocated, but Kossoris began suffering health issues, and after Krueger opted to enlist with L.A. combo the Wigs, the Shivvers disbanded. Kossoris, Krueger, Richardson and Burns reunited in 1989 to record one more single, "Remember Tonight" -- not long after the session, Burns was diagnosed with leukemia, and the disease claimed his life in 1993. Kossoris later relocated to Nashville, working as a songwriter and in 2001 issuing a solo LP, Invisible; in 2003, the Hyped to Death label issued the Shivvers retrospective Til the Word Gets Out. ~ Jason Ankeny

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