Led by Jonathan Richman, the protopunk band "The Modern Lovers" came out of Massachusetts in the early 1970s. Their classic debut album contained heartfelt songs about dating awkwardness, growing up in Massachusetts, and love of life. Many feel their best work is the first album and the outtakes from those sessions. The sound of the band owed a great deal to the influence of The Velvet Underground, but also pointed the way towards much of the punk, New Wave and indie rock of the following decades.
Richman became enamored with the Velvet Underground while he was still in high school, and after graduating in 1969, he moved to New York City where he became personally acquainted with the band. Richman spent a couple of weeks sleeping on Velvets manager Steve Sesnick's sofa before moving into the Hotel Albert, a residence known for its poor conditons. After nine months in New York, Richman moved back to his native Boston and organized a band modeled after the Velvets. Christening themselves "the Modern Lovers," the group included Richman's childhood friend John Felice as guitarist, David Robinson on drums, and Rolfe Anderson on bass. The Modern Lovers played their first date in ...