by Kale Samford, Editor, Torque Ramada Times
The Eddy Band roared out of Texas in the mid-nineties on the strength of hits like the downbeat highway anthem “Shreveport” and the psychobilly-meets arena-rock of “Sin Crowd.” To the cognoscenti, it was always simply Eddy, also the name of the nomadic character at the center of the band's songs.
By 1996, the band had reached critical mass. The lineup featured Hix (whose erratic behavior included going AWOL for a number of important dates), band founder, singer and guitarist Bob Hate, guitarist Stephen Thomas, and bass player Buck Rudo. But precisely at the point when the band was wowing audiences and music scribes, The Eddy Band disappeared.
“We'd crossed the Rubicon,” Hix said. “There's a line, and, once you've crossed it, you're just cashing in. It wasn't about the music anymore. We were all out of our minds a little bit. Success is a hell of a drug.”
For 15 years, the band released no new music.
“We weren't exactly speaking to each other,” Hix said. “I don't really know what the rest of the guys were doing [during that time]. Once I heard Buck was flying
planes for the CIA. That sounded about right.”
Then, to the astonishment of the music world, The Eddy Band reemerged in 2011 with “Six Foot Length of Rope,” a startling collection of new material and greatest hits. Somehow, the band had managed to pick up where it left off without losing a step.
The reunion was also notable for its turbulence.
“Everyone had a score to settle,” Hix explained. “You've got open sores that festered for 15 years, right? There was lots of [expletive]-talking going on in the studio. And that got out of hand. We just went to our corners, so to speak,after that, and then gradually we started working again, but long distance.”
Again, against all odds and reason, the band has reportedly finished a new disc, tentatively titled “Spanish for Medicine.” Hix confirmed that it will be The Eddy Band's swan song. “It's all new material, I think,” Hix said. “I never know what the tracks are going to be until it's out. I’m just happy when I recognize a few tunes.
During the band's long hiatus, the internet arrived in full force, making new fans for the band around the world.
“In Belgium, we're pretty much gods,” Hix pointed out. “Fiji, Kenya, you name it. We're like the Stones in Norway. The downloads add up.”
So why is The Eddy Band calling it a day, now that the band's popularity is at an all-time high?
“Ask Bob,” Hix said. “There's no Eddy without Bob. We spoke a few times about it, but his mind's made up. I wish him the best. I mean, the guy saved my life in 28 states. We’ve got our [expletive]-you money. I've done all right for a guy who was living in a bus station 20 years ago.”
Bob Hate was unavailable for comment.
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