Adam 12

11am - 4pm

June 2, 1992: Boston alt-rockers the Lemonheads release their breakthrough fifth studio album, It’s a Shame About Ray.

 

This one’s a bit of a classic in the Boston rock pantheon and it also happens to be a personal favorite of mine. So let’s take a walk back through the album together. Fair warning: the journey will be led by the 15-year-old version of Adam 12 who bought the album on cassette back in ’92 and played the absolute mess out of it.

  • "Mrs. Robinson"

    Betcha didn’t know the Lemondheads cover of the Simon & Garfunkel song wasn’t even on the original pressing of It’s a Shame About Ray. It was added to later pressings, and good on Atlantic Records for making that call. The song was a huge hit for the band 30 years ago and continues to be, for better or for worse, their best-known tune.

  • "It's a Shame About Ray"

    I’d love to say I was a Lemonheads fan from their Taang! records releases in the ’80s, but I was in grade school and middle school for those and wasn’t nearly cool enough to know better. It’s a Shame About Ray was my entry point to the group, and the title track to the album quickly became one of my favorite songs.

    When my childhood friend Andy was killed by a drunk driver after moving from Massachusetts to Tennessee when we were in high school, I attached this song to my memories of him. I actually went so far as to learn the song on guitar so I could play it in his honor at our Senior Show.

  • "Confetti"

    I was finishing my freshman year at Wakefield High School in the spring of ’92 and working part-time at the Little Caesar’s pizza down the street from my house in Greenwood. I grew up on the Melrose line, so we had a bunch of Wakefield and Melrose kids working at the shop. My buddies Chris and Craig were into the Lemonheads too, so when it was the three of us in the shop, this was cranking on the cassette deck of the boombox we kept by the pizza-making station.

  • "My Drug Buddy"

    Do you remember your first rock & roll crush? I think mine was Juliana Hatfield. Again, I was too young to know about her work in Blake Babies, but everytime her harmonies would kick in on a Lemonheads song, I’d get a flutter. It totally bummed me out when this video dropped after she left the band, because it’s her singing but Nic Dalton on bass. I don’t wanna see Nic Dalton! I wanna see Juliana!

  • "Rockin Stroll"

    Studies show that an average person’s musical tastes are shaped during their early-to-mid teens. In other words, the music you discover during those years tends to be the music that stays with you throughout your life. That tracks, because putting this album on 30 years after first hearing it takes me back 30 years. I’m 15 again, on the cusp of my first high school summer, I smell like pizza, and Evan Dando is soundtracking it all for me. What a time to be alive.