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We're Not Listening

Shooting Stars - Put'emup, Put'emup, pt. 1

The story of Put’emup, Put’emup is a weird one. Well, to be honest, it only gets weird after they release their first full-length album – but you could probably write 100,000 words about the crazy shit they pulled as that record rocked the charts, and this is just their origin story.

This Chicago-based quartet has humble beginnings like the other bands that formed before them, and at the very heart of their pop-punk jams is the dynamite duo known as Andy Allen and Anthony Alvarez. With their repetitive initials, it seemed like a sort of fate that they would end up inseparable, and what sealed the deal even further was the odd chemistry they shared – it sparked in their freshman year of high school, and it’s been burning to this day.

Well…give or take a few fistfights and arguments that range from petty to monumental.

See, opposites attract, but only sometimes. Half the time they spent in each other’s company was spent bickering over the dumbest things, and a lot of it was due to the fundamental differences in their ways of thinking: Andy tries his hardest to make people happy, Anthony is a raging pessimist and puts his own comfort first, except when it comes to the rare panic attacks that strike Andy every so often. Andy came from a broken family – an alcoholic single dad, to be exact – and Anthony’s parents and sisters supported any endeavor he took on. When one of his sisters, Catalina, was killed in a car accident, Andy stepped in and held his hand all throughout the grieving process.

And as was said before, they had an odd sort of chemistry. It shows up in the music they create with the other two young men they banded together with, how Andy’s vocals are deep and strong while Anthony’s voice is high and controlled. When they duet, their lyrics interact with each other, like it’s always been their intention to speak through music.

Andy had his chunky fingers in two things – chorus and art. For their entire freshman year of high school, he’d been trying to get Anthony to join the school choir with him just so he wouldn’t be alone, and also because Anthony didn’t have a half-bad singing voice. When they were sophomores, he finally gave in, and although they were far from choirboys, Andy’s tenor and Anthony’s alto had found places to develop, and the techniques they learned would be carried around for life.

In two other places in Illinois, there were two other guys existing in their own worlds. One of these dudes happened to live in Joliet, the other residing in Champagne, and all four of them united at the University of Chicago in 2005.

The Joliet native was a jolly fella who was named Mick Magellan. He grew up wanting to be a teacher, and anybody he ever crossed paths with would only be treated with kindness. In 2003 he packed his bags and went to UChicago to get his teaching degree, leaving his drum kit at home under the assumption that his hobby probably wouldn’t come in handy where he was going.

Chance Chauncey, hailing from Champagne, had always found himself messing around with one instrument or another. Music came naturally to the tall blond, his fingers sounding out scales along the frets of his Les Paul, and in 2004, he ended up at UChicago in hopes of studying music. It was that year that he accidentally crossed paths with Mick – though, “crossing paths” probably isn’t the right term to use, since it only implies one meeting.

The drummer and guitarist ended up becoming roommates in a random selection process, but to say that they hit it off would be an understatement. Despite Mick’s unwavering friendliness, he never had a real “best friend,” and even though Chance could go an entire day without uttering a single word, they found solace in each other’s company. Long days in strenuous classes would end with a movie marathon complete with microwave brownies courtesy of Mick, and well, it beat going to frat parties and waking up hungover.

They went to their homes in that summer of 2005 and kept in touch via email, unbeknownst to the storm that was about to revive the music-related dream that they both kept hidden.

The storm? It was a tornado. It was Anthony and Andy alternating between fighting and being best friends, and in the fall of 2005 they were crashing the university.
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And so we start the last band's saga! (Well, okay, they're not the "most recent" band to get signed to Not Listening in this universe's timeline, but I have a four-part novel series detailing the newest band's journey.)

There will be lampshade hanging, and lots of it. xD