If you missed the Nightporters — one of Atlanta's most popular bands in the hedonistic early '80s — or if you're nostalgic about the way things used to be when the scene was dominated by punk and art bands, here's your chance to relive those days. The 'Porters have booked themselves into the Star Bar for this year's reunion of the four original members: guitarist Ray Dafrico (Kickstand, KTO), vocalist/guitarist Andy Browne (Moonbase 5), bassist Tim Nielsen (KTO, drivin'n'cryin') and drummer Paul Lenz.
The band started in '81 when the members were still in high school. Two years later, they were headlining such late and lamented clubs as the Bistro, the Strand, 688, the Metroplex and the Blue Rat. In the old days, the band congregated in the Pershing Point area in Midtown, but now they are spread out all over the country. Drummer Lenz is a concert promoter based in St. Simons, Ga. Atlantan Dafrico has a new project in the works with busy keyboardist Joey Huffman (Satellites, Soul Asylum). Browne stays busy in Philadelphia with the Andy Browne Trio, and Nielsen divides his time between local construction projects and occasional drivin'n'cryin' shows.
Until 2001, they hadn't played a live show since '86, so nowadays when they come together for an annual show, it's an event. "Everyone seems to have a very good time at the reunions," says Browne. "It's just fun playing heartfelt tunes, written in the bliss of youth with your old 'mates, instead of trying to impress some A & R asshole."
"One show a year is better than nothing," laughs Dafrico. "But we really should stop kidding ourselves, write some more songs start ruling the world again!"
The Nightporters play Fri., Dec. 10, at the Star Bar.