Shivvers – Teen Line ….Power Pop Friday

I featured a song by The Shivvers a couple of years ago. Most of the songs I heard from them are very good. It’s a shame they couldn’t get a big label interested in the early 80s.

The Shivvers were a power pop band from Milwaukee, active from 1978 to 1982. Milwaukee was not exactly the center of the rock universe at the time. They had their roots in the 60s music, They were more new wavey than punk but retained from the latter a sense of urgency that could be heard in their sole single “Teen Line” released on the Fliptop independent label in 1980.

They thought about moving to LA or New York in the 80s but decided not to. It’s a shame because they did have some famous fans that included Lou Reed and Eric Carmen. In 1993, Kossoris moved to Nashville, where she worked with The Mavericks among others, and recorded a record, “Invisible,” released in 2001.

The Shivvers were Jill Kossoris (vocals), Jim Richardson (drums), Mike Pyle and Jim Eannelli (guitars) and Scott Krueger (bassist/songwriter).

Jill Kossoris:  I’ve been influenced by so many different kinds of music. My parents listened to everything. My sister listened to everything. They were all into power pop like Badfinger, Big Star, the Flamin’ Groovies, Motown music. I liked really catchy, soulful, well-written songs.

Jill Kossoris: You can always look back and see how you could have improved your life in a lot of ways. But at one point, we were just so frustrated that we kind of imploded. You can really get stuck in that whole “bar band” thing. Back in those days, most bands played AT LEAST three- or four hour-long sets. Not to brag, but we were all pretty tight before we started doing that. We were all pretty seasoned musicians. Our time was there. We were ready. Everybody doesn’t get better by grinding it out on the club circuit for five years.

Teen Line

Last night I got a call on the telephone
As long as it can ring I am not alone
And the night don’t seem so far away
It’ll be alright someday
And the sun don’t have to shine
Because my heart’s on a teen line

All you do is call in this love on a teen line

You say feel so fine, you’ve got everything
You’ve got a big black car and bird that sings
And it’s right, ’cause you called me yesterday
And I had so much to say
And the sun don’t have to shine
Because my heart’s on the teen line

All you do is call in this love on the teen line
Nothing matters at all (not at all)
Give us just a little and call on your teen line
Say that you love me and that you’ll think of me tonight

If we were older, we wouldn’t have to wait so long
But as long as you love me, nothing really matters at all

Last night I didn’t know, I was wondering
I sit by the phone waiting for your ring
And the sound makes my heart beat fast
‘Cause you had so much to say
And I know this love will last
‘Cause my heart’s on the teen line

All you do is call in this love on a teen line
Nothing matters at all
Give us just a little and call on your teen line
Say that you love me and that you’ll think of me tonight

Love on the teen line makes me feel loved
Love on the teen line
Love on the teen line
Love on the teen line
Love on the teen line

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

20 thoughts on “Shivvers – Teen Line ….Power Pop Friday”

  1. Not bad… I hear potential there. the record itself wasn’t all that, in terms of playing or production, but it had a pretty decent song there & maybe could have been a whole lot more with a little big label help. Milwaukee doesn’t seem like it produces a lot of acts – Violent Femmes are only one that comes to mind quickly to me. Maybe because of the proximity to Chicago – promising Mil. bands just move 80 miles south to be in the bigger market?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Not a bad tune. It’s got a nice ’60s vibe. Perhaps their timing was off?

    You gotta love the subtitle of the album pictured in the second clip: “Lost hits from Milwaukee’s first family of powerpop: 1979-1982”. I wonder how many other powerpop bands Milwaukee had at the time?

    When I hear the name Milwaukee, the first thing that comes to mind is beer. Frankly, I would never have associated it with music. Of course, it may be ignorance.

    Liked by 1 person

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