Tommy Chung, adios!

Selmanaires bassist is leaving ATL for the greener pastures of NYC, it’s the end of an era


  • Tim Song
  • Tommy Chung (left) of the Selmanaires

Bassist Tommy Chung played his last show with the Selmanaires at the Drunken Unicorn on Saturday night (Oct. 16). Chung has been a Little 5 Points fixture for several years, working day jobs at Criminal Records and Aurora Coffee, toured with the Atlas Sound live band and with Adron’s live band as well. Tommy even did a short stint playing with the Black Lips back in the fall of 2007, so his departure feels a bit like the end of an era for this town.

He’s moving to New York at the end of the month to be with his girlfriend and hopefully find work as a writer. What the future holds in store for the Selmanaires remains to be seen, but they are not breaking up. “We are going to try to keep the Selmanaires going and focus on recording,” Chung says. “The boys and I are planning to e-mail GarageBand wav. files back-and-forth and on occasion I will fly back to Atlanta to record, or they will fly up to New York to record with me.”

In the meantime the group is finishing a new single and b-side recorded by Cyrus Shahmir. After that they’ll convene once more to record a cover of Chilean songwriter Victor Jara’s spaced-out number, “En El Rio Mapocho.”

If you missed the Selmanaires show on Saturday, Tommy is making one last stand in Atlanta with the Mathis Hunter band at Whirlyball on October 31, with Judi Chicago and Gentleman Jesse.