We would ride the record/tour/record/tour merry-go-round for a decade and experience many of the same ups and downs as our peers and heroes, the same major-label woes and music-industry insanity. That we've stuck together so long might have to do with our particular personal chemistry: Chris Colbourn and I, the ice and fire to Tom's self-described (via Spinal Tap) "lukewarm water." We took breaks to raise families and, yeah, even find other ways to make enough money to support them. We even played T.T.'s — in our 40s! And, mercifully, despite my less-than-prudent earlier request, no one shot me.

But all that was yet to come. It was 1989. Our first album was on SST, and we were ready to hit the studio again. We were on our way.

Bill Janovitz is a singer, guitarist, and songwriter for Buffalo Tom and the author of The Rolling Stones' Exile on Main Street in Continuum Books' 33 1/3 series.

Music: Buffalo Tom

IN THE BEGINNING

Don't believe this nostalgic old geezer about the good old days? Take a look at this flyer (left) from T.T. the Bear's Place for January 1988: Galaxie 500, the Neats, Miracle Legion, Treat Her Right, the Bags, Big Dipper and the Blood Oranges, the Zulus, Push Push, the Cave Dogs, and one of my own early faves, Last Stand. Jesus! This was January! And there we are, our first gig at T.T.'s, a Tuesday night in January, opening up for the immortal Idaho Alaska. How important was this gig to Buffalo Tom 25 years ago? I've saved this piece of paper for 24 years.

BUFFALO TOM | Special guests including J Mascis, Ted Leo, Eugene Mirman [Friday], Mean Creek, Bob Weston, HilkEn Mancini [Saturday], Tanya Donelly, Thalia Zedek [Sunday] | Brighton Music Hall, 158 Brighton Ave, Allston | November 25, 26, 27 | 7:30 pm | 18+ | $22 | 617.779.0140 or ticketmaster.com

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