FIVE FIRSTS: Stephen Clair
NAME: Stephen Clair
BAND AFFILIATION: Stephen Clair & the Millionaires
1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … The Beatles’ Second Album — at Jamesway. I was in fourth grade. At the beginning of that school year, a new family had moved in across the street from me. The parents looked and acted nothing like my parents. They had Beatles posters in every room of the house. Who were these Beatles? That’s where it started for me. So, in fourth grade I proceeded to buy every Beatles album. Mostly at Jamesway. Some at Barkers.
2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … I don’t know. It could have been the Beach Boys or Liza Minnelli or Barry Manilow with my mother. I can tell you the concert experience that changed my life forever. When I was 15, a friend brought me to see Talking Heads (a band I had never heard of) and while I watched them perform from the SPAC lawn my brain was disassembled and then put back together in a way that made more sense than ever before. Yes, it was religious.
3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … After the badminton-racquet air guitar and the ukulele, which I smashed after seeing Pete Townsend on TV, my mom took me to the Only Guitar Shop in Clifton Park. This is when the OGS was in a little cottage and the sole person who worked there was the owner Dave Triller, who not long before that had been stocking shelves in my stepfather’s grocery store. That day, I came home with a Strat knockoff and a Fender Champ, all for 75 bucks. If only I still had that amp.
4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … “Summer Breeze,” Seals and Crofts.
5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … Indecision. That was the name of the band. We played songs by XTC and Loverboy at the Saratoga YMCA. How messed up is that?
A longtime fixture on the Albany music and poetry scene in such bands as Glaze, Wag, Cactus Loveseat, Sabotage & the Wrecking Crew and more, Stephen Clair straps on his guitar to lead his band the Millionaires (featuring drummer Todd Giudice and bassist Christopher Peifer) for a homecoming gig at the Steamer No. 10 Theatre in Albany at 8pm on Saturday (November 15) in support of Clair’s latest CD, “Love Makes Us Weird.” And if that’s not enough for ya, Bryan Thomas will be sharing the bill. Tickets are $13 in advance; $15 at the door.
BUT WAIT… Have we got a deal for you! We’re giving away a pair of FREE TICKETS to the show. To enter, just post a comment below. Please leave your email address, too. We won’t publish it, but we’ll use it to contact you if you win. The deadline to enter is 12noon on Friday (November 14), and the winner will be selected at random and notified on Friday afternoon. Don’t delay, enter today! And good luck! Congratulations to the winner, who has been notified by email.