Capitol Records Biography
Source: Capitol Records Fall 1992
Billy Ficca - drums
Richard Lloyd - guitar
Fred Smith - bass
Tom Verlaine - guitar and vocals
Tom Verlaine, Billy Ficca and Richard Hell were in a band called the Neon Boys until around 1973. This group evolved into Television with the addition of Richard Lloyd.
Richard Hell soon left, and, to replace him, Fred Smith was recruited from the ranks of Blondie to become Television's new bass player.
In 1975, they released a single, "Little Johnny Jewel", which has often been cited as one of the turning points in contemporary New York music. Their first LP, Marquee Moon, released in 1977, has been voted one of the best rock records of all time by many magazines including Rolling Stone, Sounds, NME and Spin.
A second LP, Adventure, was released in 1978, and in 1979, soon after the band made the decision to record their third album in 1992, they decided to take a well-earned sabbatical as a group until they started recording again.
All the members started solo careers and Tom and Richard both released albums under their own names. Fred and Billy have been very active with various bands. They have not played together as a group since they decided to take a break from recording as Television although Tom and Fred worked together on many of Tom's records and Billy played on Tom's last album.
Now that 1992 is here and they have re-united and recorded their third album, the next move was to start playing live concerts. The first places they played in 1992 were the festivals in Europe at Glastonbury, Lille and Roskilde.
The self-produced third LP, or rather compact disc, Television, features just the four members of the band with no guest musicians or vocalists.
All the songs were written by Tom with the whole band composing the music.
There is no comment that can be made about the songs included in Television except to say that they retain the original sense of humor, the paranormal, deadly seriousness and the absurd all combined in each song.