So, “Who is Fred?” you ask? “Fred might be the pit bull that bit my ass in the sixth grade”, says Bill White.“It’s open to interpretation. Maybe you’ll never know who it is.” FOF was formed in the fall of 1996 when Bill White (vocals/guitar) found Chris “the Shredder” McGrath (lead guitar/vocals) and Mark “Snoopy” Illiano (bass) through a musician’s ad...that’s right, someone actually reads those things. McGrath and Illiano, friends since high school, spent many years on the LI/NYC music circuit searching for the right musicians to complete an original music project. After months of sifting through a non-stop parade of frustrated wannabes, delusional losers and self-absorbed egomaniacal hacks, they were glad to find Bill White. They clicked immediately with White and began to rehearse frequently while looking for a steady drummer. Soon, they found Matt McCluskey…a talented drummer who was lamenting the break up of some band called Swim. Quickly dubbed “Matt the Angry Drummer” by the band due to his deep set eyes and intense neuroses regarding his drumset, McCluskey was be-dazzled with FOF’s material and quickly fit into the groove. They wrote, rehearsed, and recorded while performing in the Tri-State area to filled rooms (CBGB’s, LeBar Bat, Kenny’s Castaways, Lion’s Den, the Continental, the Downtown, NY Avenue, etc.). The bands Demo, Debut CD, and Live performances quickly received RAVE reviews from all the local music papers (Newsday, Island Ear, Inside Connection, Good Times, LI Entertainment, etc.) and radio airplay from all of the local stations (WLIR, WBLI, WBAB, WRCN, WCWP, WRHU, WUSB, WSIA). Fan and media reaction to FOF’s early tunes was an indication that they had something special and were on the right track…the growing number of stalkers and awestruck groupies was also a good sign. The band distributed the self-produced debut disc to 300 college radio stations through Howard Rosen Promotions. They made it onto the Top 20 CMJ addlist (3/2000) and were put into rotation on 165 college stations across the US. They cracked the Top 30 list on over 25 stations. FOF’s second disc entitled “Another Bad Day” was released during August of 2002. They worked with Jim Sabella on this one. Jim has done production work with Public Enemy, Marcy Playground (Sex & Candy), and Nine Days (Story of a Girl). The disc was promoted through the Planetary Group 9/2002. “Another Bad Day” made it onto the CMJ TOP 20 add list (9/02), debuted @ ..143 on the CMJ TOP 200 CHART and received frequent spins at local commercial stations WLIR, WBAB, & Q104 in NY, and over 175 U.S. College stations. The band conducted a significant amount of appearances, interviews and performances on commercial and college radio stations after the release of the disc. FOF has a loyal following in the Tri-State Area and a reputation for drawing large crowds of self-proclaimed “Fred-Heads” to their energetic and entertaining live shows. FOF’s noteworthy gigs include opening act slots at the Tommy Hilfiger/Jones Beach Concert Theater in NY with Bad Company, Styx, and Billy Squier 7/01. Clear Channel reps were impressed and also granted them an opening slot for Huey Lewis & the News, 8/4/01. They’ve also appeared at NY venues as an opening act for the Alarm, the English Beat, General Public, Antigone Rising, Dramarama, Nine Days, etc. The band has also successfully participated in many competitions, showcases and events sponsored by NY Commercial Radio Stations and other media including WBAB, WLIR, WBLI, Newsday, Inside Connection Magazine, Long Island Fall Festival at Heckscher Park Ampitheater, Freeport Nautical Mile festival, etc. During 2003 & 2004, MTV featured FOF songs in their reality shows “Sorority Life” and “Fraternity Life”. 14 FOF songs were used during the two seasons. FOF has just completed a brand new disc. They are particularly excited about the crowd favorite title track…“Girls on Reality TV”… a unique blend of high powered pop-punk and a story of a lovable loser’s fascination with the “Boob” tube. The band is poised to acheive its goal of spreading FEAR...of FRED to all modern rock fans.
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