One night(Porters) only

A lot of people have heard about us, says Ray Dafrico of the Nightporters, "but they've never seen us."
Atlantans who missed the famed local rock group during its '80s heyday soon will get another chance. The Nightporters have scheduled a one-time reunion show featuring the original members: guitarist Dafrico (Kickstand, KTO), vocalist/guitarist Andy Browne (Moonbase 5), bassist Tim Nielsen (KTO, drivin n cryin) and drummer Paul Lenz (drivin n cryin). This will be the first time the band has performed with that lineup since 1986.
"We started around '81, when we were all in high school," recalls Dafrico, "and by '83, we were playing places like the Bistro, the Strand, 688, the Metroplex and the Blue Rat. We were the first band in town with people our age playing rock, which inspired lots of the others who came along, like the Black Crowes."
Although the Nightporters issued two singles and an EP, they never released an album. They did perform a lot, though, including high-profile gigs opening for the Clash, R.E.M. and the Replacements. They never played with the English Beat, however, so when an Atlanta concert by the Beat's Dave Wakeling recently was announced, Dafrico decided it was time to reassemble the 'Porters.
"Tim's not doing anything with drivin n cryin right now," says Dafrico, "and Andy and I had already been talking about this." Although Dafrico is active with his group Kickstand and Browne is preparing a solo album, they cleared their schedules and began re-learning the old repertoire.
"We used to play really fast and hide our mistakes in the speed," Dafrico says. "I was listening to an old live recording of us from WREK, and it was ridiculous. It's good to play those songs again, now that we really know how to play."
The Nightporters play the Variety Playhouse, Tues., March 13.