(GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass.) – One of the original and longest-running alternative rock bands, They Might Be Giants – formed as a duo by John Flansburgh and John Linnell nearly 30 years ago in 1982 – will perform at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center on Friday, September 9, at 8, in support of their new album, Join Us. An announcement of on-sale ticket date is forthcoming and will be fed through the Rogovoy Report’s website and social media feeds on Facebook and Twitter.
Longtime college favorites due to the group’s witty songwriting celebrating nerdy subjects such as particle physics, American history, geography, grammar, philosophy, cultural criticism, and music itself, the creative core of the group, Flansburgh and Linnell, have been performing as a full band for over 20 years, along the way garnering popularity as Grammy Award-winners, TV and move theme composers, and for their children’s music albums (which, to some, is hardly much of a stretch from their non-children’s albums, which have always boasted a childlike whimsy, making their venture into the children’s market seem obvious if not redundant).
The two Johns, as they are called, grew up and attended high school together in Lincoln in eastern Massachusetts, although they did not form a creative partnership until after they went separate ways for college. They reunited post-college when they both lived in Brooklyn. Years before bands posted new and unfinished songs on the Internet for free downloads, They Might Be Giants anticipated the trend with their novel “Dial a Song” setup, whereby fans were given a phone number to call which reached an old-fashioned tape answering machine on which they duo posted new work daily.
Although the group has never had a huge pop hit, they have a loyal following for such cult classic tunes as “Particle Man,” “Birdhouse in Your Soul,” “Your Racist Friend,” “Istanbul (Not Constantinople),” amd “I Palindrome I.” The group’s musical style has always been hard to pin down; the two Johns are fleet, versatile composers who can seemingly toss off catchy melody and arrangements in an eclectic range of styles ranging from the Beatles to James Brown to electronica to pre-rock pop to anything a song requires.
For many years, a higlight of the group’s live shows was an all-audience conga line.