Originally created 07/11/97

Band splices feel-good rock with some pain-filled lyrics



Penguins have it made, thought Jay Memory, watching the Discovery Channel. They waddle around on the ice, eat a little fish, then go to sleep.

Life's tougher than that for the rest of us, he says. We work, we love, we lust, we hurt, we cry, we die.

So he wrote a song, So Complicated, carried on Memory Dean's new album, Shake it Up, which was released July 1. It has a "we're in the jungle/heading down the highway" feel. Augusta's WRXR-FM played it 30 times last week.

"We've been waiting for this album to come out for so ... long," says Jay Memory's band-mate, Bubba Dean, 27. "Finally, the day has arrived."

Saturday, these native Georgians will be at the Whippin' Post on Washington Road.

Seven years ago, Jay Memory and Bubba Dean were undergraduates at the University of Georgia, playing the bars in Athens. Now they're opening for bands like Bare Naked Ladies.

"The way it came out is rocking," Bubba Dean says. "It's definitely an upbeat, feelgood kind of record."

Yeah, right. It has songs titled Pain and Dying to Live. The lyrics describe lost lovers with "hollow eyes," blood-red suns, girls screaming in the arms of a nightmare. "Funeral flowers fill her lungs."

This is "sunny pop"?

Lots of the lyrics show wounded men feeling hurt. Women dig that.

"We definitely know some bands that are real `girl bands' - their crowd is like 80 percent girls. You can somewhat be jealous of that, but we don't want to be all about goofy wimpy girl music," Jay Memory says. "We don't want to be a death metal guy band, but at the same time we don't want to be Menudo."

Still, they would rather have more girls up by the stage, they say.

"We played some gigs where it's just a bunch of guys right up front. It was just a little awkward singing "I'm lovesick inside, I just can't hide it," he says. "It's always good to have some girls around."

Too bad they both have permanent groupies: They're both married. Sigh.

a couple wanders the rails of Europe longing to be meaningful and deep, but they just don't make it.}

"What's frustrating is everyone is judging this band on one song," says Jay Memory, 29. "It's one tune. Hopefully we'll get to release another 30 songs and four years from now everyone will realize who we are."

"We're not looking to have some big hit and never be heard from again," Bubba Dean says. "We're looking for some longevity."

Show informationOn stage
What: Memory Dean
When: Saturday
Where: The Whippin' Post, 2834 Washington Road
How much: $3
Phone: 733-1944

Sound bite

To hear Memory Dean, call INFOLINE at 442-4444 and press 8102. You'll hear part of the song So Complicated from the album Shake it Up.