Starflyer 59

Starflyer 59

Infobox musical artist
Name = Starflyer 59

Img_size = 200
Landscape =
Background = group_or_band
Birth_name =
Alias =
Born =
Died =
Origin = Riverside, California
Instrument =
Genre = Indie rock
Occupation =
Years_active = 1993 – present
Label = Tooth & Nail Records
Associated_acts =
URL = []
Current_members = Jason Martin
Josh Dooley
Trey Many
Steven Dail

Past_members = Andrew Larson
Eric Campuzano
Jeff Cloud
Wayne Everett
Joey Esquibel
Richard Swift
Frank Lenz
Gene Eugene
Matt Johnson
Notable_instruments =

:"For the Japanese airline see StarFlyer."

Starflyer 59 is an indie rock band from Riverside, California that was founded in 1993 by Jason Martin, brother of Ronnie Martin of Joy Electric. While Jason Martin has written nearly all of Starflyer 59's songs, the band has included a number of different musicians over the years, including Jeff Cloud, Frank Lenz, and Richard Swift.


Starflyer 59 was signed to Tooth & Nail Records, their original and current label, after Jason Martin gave a demo to Brandon Ebel when the two met at a music festival in 1993. Shortly afterwards, Ebel contacted Martin and offered him a record contract. By the end of the year, Starflyer 59's debut album, "Silver", was recorded and released.

In mid-1994, Starflyer 59 released a follow-up EP to "Silver" entitled "She's The Queen". Fans who had purchased Silver and new listeners who were beginning to hear more about the band had begun to say that they "liked the second album more than the first." Interestingly, this somewhat angered Jason Martin, as he did not intend for the EP to be considered any sort of album whatsoever. He felt there was no reason to compare the two pieces of work to each other. Either way, the fanbase for Starflyer 59 was beginning to grow.

In 1995, Starflyer 59 released their second album, "Gold". The sound was similar to their first release, while Jason Martin continued to add layers of guitar riffs to each song. Original response to the album was generally negative. Many who had enjoyed the band's debut were disappointed with the release, partly because the songs had a somewhat depressive tone and continued on for minutes and minutes on end. Eventually, people began viewing "Gold" positively. Sales of the album suddenly jumped and it nearly tripled the sales of Silver.

For Starflyer 59's next album which was released in 1997, "Americana", several changes to the band were made. Bass player Andrew Larson departed, being replaced by Eric Campuzano (The Prayer Chain). In addition, Wayne Everett, also of The Prayer Chain became the band's studio drummer, a role that had previously been held by Jason Martin himself. High tensions in the studio during the recoding of the album led Campuzano to leave the band before it began touring to support the new album. Replacing him was Jeff Cloud, who had been Starflyer's touring manager.

The release of "The Fashion Focus" in 1998 signaled a significant change in the direction of the band's sound, largely due to the influence of producer Gene Eugene. Where previous albums had emphasized guitars and loud rock and roll, "The Fashion Focus" was a significantly softer album. This album featured the introduction of keyboards in the music, which replaced layered guitars. The new sound was more pop-friendly than earlier albums, while not abandoning the signature Starflyer sound. "Everybody Makes Mistakes", released the next year, continued in the same direction as "The Fashion Focus".

On November 21, 2000, Starflyer 59 released "Easy Come Easy Go", a two-disc "best-of" set. The first disc containing some popular greatest hits, while the second disc was a collection of rarities, B-sides, and a number of live performances. 2001 saw the release of "Leave Here A Stranger", Starflyer's next full length album. The band's sound continued to evolve, as "Leave Here A Stranger" would come to be lauded and praised by many music critics as Starflyer 59's best release to date. After the untimely death of Gene Eugene, Martin called on long-time musical hero Terry Scott Taylor to take over production of the new album. In a tribute to the Beach Boys' monumental album "Pet Sounds", "Leave Here a Stranger" was recorded in mono.

From 2003 to 2006 Starflyer 59 released one full-length album a year; all of them self-produced. The first of these albums was "Old". "Old" maintained a more pop-oriented sound that had begun with The Fashion Focus, but was also more guitar-oriented than "Leave Here A Stranger". However, the music of Old was still significantly softer than the band's early work. In 2004, "I Am the Portuguese Blues" was released. With this album, Starflyer 59 returned to the heavy guitar format that was so prominent on their early albums "Silver", "Gold", and "Americana", as well as the monochromatic album covers that had characterized these albums. "I Am the Portuguese Blues" was not a true follow-up to "Old", but instead was a set of older songs that Jason Martin had written for a follow-up album to "Americana". The material was originally shelved when the band shifted gears and instead recorded "The Fashion Focus". This was a treat for fans of Starflyer 59's older material, but confused many newer fans and critics who were familiar with Starflyer 59's more recent pop-friendly work.

2005's "Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice" saw the band change their sound yet again, to a style that seemed a more natural follow-up to "Old" than "I Am the Portuguese Blues" had been. The album took on somewhat of an 80's feel. For this album, Starflyer 59 was cut down to two members: Jason Martin and drummer Frank Lenz. It would be the first studio album since "Americana" to be recorded without bassist Jeff Cloud. Despite having only two band members, the songs on "Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice" have a full sound. This is largely due to the inclusion of guest string players on many of the albums tracks. Also in 2005, Starflyer 59 re-issued digitally re-mastered versions of "Silver" and "Gold" with bonus tracks. The re-issue of "Silver" came with the tracks of the band's follow-up EP, "She's The Queen". "Gold" was reissued with the "Goodbyes Are Sad" 7 inch single and three of the four tracks from the "Le Vainqueur EP". Many of these extra tracks, however, had been included on the 2-disc set Easy Come, Easy Go.

The band released their follow up to "Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice" titled "My Island" September 12, 2006 along with a music video for the song "I Win" off the album soon after. As the years go by, Starflyer 59 continue to release albums that seem to be a natural progression of the previous album, with the exception of I Am the Portuguese Blues. In 2007, Starflyer 59 had a special promotion among the most devoted fans, where they would release a total of 10 7-inch vinyl records over a period of months. Each 7" would contain a song from the forthcoming record, as well as a B-side that would be released only for the promotion. Jason Martin has recorded his 11th album, and is currently awaiting the release of "Dial M" worldwide on October 28, 2008.

ide Projects

Jason Martin's side projects include Bon Voyage, Pony Express, Enemy Ships (formerly known as The Emergency), Neon Horse, and The Brothers Martin. He has also produced albums for Fine China and MAP and performed work as a studio musician and guest musician on several albums.


Tooth and Nail (1994)
Reissued in 2005

Tooth and Nail (1995)
Reissued in 2005

Tooth and Nail (1997)

The Fashion Focus
Tooth and Nail (1998)

Leave Here a Stranger
Tooth and Nail (2001)

Tooth and Nail (2003)

Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice
Tooth and Nail (2005)

My Island
Tooth and Nail (2006)

Dial M
Tooth and Nail (2008)

= EPs =

* "She's the Queen" (1994)
* "Le Vainqueur" (1995)
* "Fell in Love at 22" (1999)
* "Can't Stop Eating" (2002)
* "Old Demos (2003)
* "The Last Laurel" (2004)
* "I Win" (2006)

Live Albums

* "Plugged" (EP) (1996)
* "Live at the Paradox" (EP) (2002)
* "Live at Schubas" (2003)
* "Live At The SpinCycle" (2003)
* "Live At The Loft" (2004)
* "Never Play Covers" (2005)
* "Live At The Green Door" (2005)
* "Live at Schubas II" (2006; offered only on

12 inch vinyls

* "Gold" (12") (1995, Tooth and Nail Records)
* "Americana" (12") (1997, Tooth and Nail Records)
* "The Fashion Focus" (12" + bonus 7") (1999, Burnt Toast Vinyl)
* "Everybody Makes Mistakes" (12" + bonus 7") (1999, Burnt Toast Vinyl)
* "Leave Here a Stranger" (12") (2001, ABC Group Documentation)
* "Portuguese Blues" (1-sided 12") (2004, Burnt Toast Vinyl)
* "The Last Laurel" (12") (2005, Republic of Texas Recordings)
* "Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice" (12") (2005, Burnt Toast Vinyl)

Singles (7″ vinyl)

* "The Drop" (1993)
* "Goodbyes Are Sad" (1995)
* "Bonus 7″ w/The Fashion Focus 12″" (1999)
* "Bonus 7″ w/Everybody Makes Mistakes 12″" (1999)

Box Sets

* "Easy Come Easy Go" (2000)
* "Ghosts of the Future" (2007) (10-record 7" vinyl box set, released on Burnt Toast Vinyl)


*"" (CD) (1994, R.E.X. Music)
*"Happy Christmas" (CD) (1998, BEC Recordings)
*"" (1999, Ferris Wheel)
*"Plastiq Musiq: Electric Music Comp.1" (CD) (1999, Plastiq Musiq)
*"Happy Christmas Vol. 2" (CD) (1999, BEC Recordings)
*"" (CD) (2001, BEC Recordings)
*"Happy Christmas Vol.3" (CD) (2001, BEC Recordings)
*"A Live Tribute Recording For Gene Eugene" (CD) (2001, Northern Records)
*"X 2003: Experience the Alternative" (2xCD) (2003, BEC Recordings)
*"Neverending White Lights: ACT 1, Goodbye Friends of the Heavenly Bodies" (CD) (2005, Daniel Victor)
*"Happy Christmas Vol.4" (CD) (2005, Tooth and Nail Records)
*"You Cant Handle The Tooth!" Vol. 01 (2006, Tooth and Nail Records)


*"When I Learn To Sing" (Songbook/Fake book) (2005)


Current members

*Jason Martin - Guitar, Vocals
*Josh Dooley - Guitar, formerly keyboards
*Trey Meny - Drums (Velour 100 & His Name is Alive)
*Steven Dail - Bass (Project 86 and Crash Rickshaw)

Former Members & Players

*Andrew Larson - Bass (Silver - Gold)
*Eric Campuzano - Bass (Americana)
*Jeff Cloud - Bass (The Fashion Focus - Everybody Makes Mistakes - Leave Here A Stranger - Old - I Am the Portuguese Blues)
*Dan Reid - Drums (Silver)
*Ed Giles Benrock - Drums (Gold)
*Wayne Everett - Drums (Gold - Americana - The Fashion Focus - Everybody Makes Mistakes)
*Joey Esquibel - Drums (Leave Here A Stranger)
* Richard Swift - Keyboards (Old)
*Frank Lenz - Drums (Old - Talking Voice vs. Singing Voice)
*Gene Eugene - Keys, Mixing and Production (Gold - Americana - Everybody Makes Mistakes)


*Prior to Starflyer 59, Jason Martin played in the group Dance House Children with his brother Ronnie.
*The original name for Starflyer 59 was Starflyer 2000. This name was later used for a short-lived collaboration between Jason Martin and Leigh Bingham.
*In a mid-1990s advertisement for Cornerstone Festival in CCM Magazine, the band was referred to as Starflyer 69.
*Jason Martin's wife Julie stars opposite Martin in the video for "A Housewife Love Song".
*Starflyer 59 covers "Sin For A Season" on the "" tribute to Steve Taylor.
*Original copies of the "Plugged" EP have sold for several hundred dollars on eBay.

External links

* [ Starflyer 59]
* [ Official Purevolume]
* [ Official MySpace]
* [ Jason Martin's 2001 guitar rig on]
* [ Fan Based Forums]
* [ Trouser Press entry]
* [ Joe Wallace interviews Jason Martin for]

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