My Little Red Book

Don't All Thank Me at Once: The Lost Pop Genius of Scott Miller

Brett Milano

My Little Red Book

Scott Miller's tale serves as a case study for the imbalance of imagination and economics. The computer programmer and hardcore music nerd led his Eighties act Game Theory to college rock glory and his Nineties band the Loud Family to critical acclaim. The former's masterpiece, 1987's Lolita Nation, layered pop hooks with found sounds, distortion, and cut-and-paste techniques, inspiring devotees/descendants including Aimee Mann, Guided by Voices, New Pornographers, and Okkervil River. Even so, Miller never even whiffed the charts. Veteran journalist Brett Milano's biography coincides with reissues of its subject's long out-of-print catalog and makes a case for two decades of genius through interviews with bandmates, friends, and family members. His no-nonsense narrative never bogs down in unrelated anecdotes or overanalysis, letting the work drive Don't All Thank Me at Once. Miller, a California native, committed suicide in 2013 at the age of 53.


Don't All Thank Me at Once: The Lost Pop Genius of Scott Miller

by Brett Milano
125 Records, 180 pp., $15.99 (paper)

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Jimmy Buffett: A Good Life All the Way
Jimmy Buffett: A Good Life All the Way
The Parrothead behind the empire

Doug Freeman, July 21, 2017

All Over the Map, True Heroes of Texas Music
All Over the Map, True Heroes of Texas Music

Kevin Curtin, June 16, 2017

More by Michael Toland
Texas Platters
Grivo / Single Lash / Future Museums
Elude, Providence, Rosewater Ceremony Part II: Guardian of Solitude (Record Review)

Nov. 9, 2018

Texas Platters
Immortal Guardian
Age of Revolution (Record Review)

Oct. 26, 2018

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Scott Miller, Summer Reading 2016, Game Theory, Loud Family, Aimee Mann, Guided By Voices, New Pornographers, Okkervil River

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle