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After extended hiatus, Was (Not Was) is again
After more than a decade of dormancy, eclectic Detroit funk act Was (Not Was) is preparing to re-emerge with a December/January club tour, a best-of album and a new studio set.
The brief tour gets underway Dec. 27 in Southern California, and so far is scheduled to visit nine cities. According to the group’s publicist, the lineup will include Don Was, David Was, vocalist Sweet Pea Atkinson, sax player David McMurray, guitarist Randy Jacobs and a drummer to be determined.
The outing, dubbed the Life After Meth tour, will help pave the way for the planned spring 2005 release of a new Was (Not Was) album, tentatively titled “Boo!”, as well as the best-of collection. Release dates haven’t been announced for either set.
Was (Not Was) issued its self-titled debut album in 1981, and followed it with 1983’s “Born to Laugh at Tornados,” which featured guest vocals from both Mel Torme and Ozzy Osbourne.
The group’s most commercially successful album was 1988’s “What Up, Dog,” which spawned the hits “Walk the Dinosaur” and “Spy in the House of Love.” It was followed by 1990’s “Are You Okay?”
Don Was (Don Fagenson) and David Was (David Weiss) went their separate ways in 1993. Don went on to produce Bonnie Raitt’s Grammy-winning “Nick of Time” album, and also worked with Elton John, Kris Kristofferson, the B-52’s, Elton John and others. David produced two soundtracks for “The X-Files” and scored two network dramas.
The pair began working on new Was (Not Was) material in 2002, and the live band re-formed for a gig at the Sundance Film Festival in the winter of 2004.