Temple of the Dog
Settle in. This is a good story! Back in 1991, I (Gale Rosenberg, President of Rock ‘n Retail & Web ‘n Retail) was the Promotion Manager for the Wherehouse Records retail chain (they had 114 stores). Her job was to plan events with the remote vehicle (built by Batman’s & The Munsters, car builder George Barris) called the “Movie and Music Machine” to drive traffic back to Wherehouse stores.
“The band was conceived by vocalist Chris Cornell of Soundgarden as a tribute to his friend, the late Andrew Wood, lead singer of Malfunkshun and Mother Love Bone. The line-up included Stone Gossard on rhythm guitar, Jeff Ament on bass guitar (both ex-members of Mother Love Bone), Mike McCready on lead guitar, Matt Cameron on drums, and Eddie Vedder providing some lead and backing vocals.
The band released its only album, the self-titled Temple of the Dog, in April 1991 through A&M Records.” I was at A&M Records one day and asked if I could take a cassette from a box of radio promo cassettes that were stacked by the desk of Radio Promoter Charlie Minor (now deceased and whole ‘nother story on its own and worth a read here: http://articles.latimes.com/1995-09-24/entertainment/ca-49278_1_death-march). I’d heard “Hunger Strike” and loved that song (even though I’d never been a fan of Soundgarden nor Mother Love Bone, nor Alice in Chains for that matter!).
Charlie said “take all the boxes, we’ll be dropping them soon”. I was shocked. The Wherehouse Movie & Music Machine was headed to the Bumbershoot festival in their hometown of Seattle taking place in late August of that year, 1991. So I offered to distribute the cassettes and promote the band. So we inserted a coupon to get the full album at Wherehouse at a discount along with a free limited edition “Temple of the Dog” pin. We made coupons and pins and gave out just under 5,000 cassettes. After that, I began hearing tracks on the radio and “Although earning praise from music critics at the time of its release, the album was not widely recognized until 1992, when Vedder, Ament, Gossard, and McCready had their breakthrough with Pearl Jam.” This was the only record ever put out by “Temple of the Dog”. I’m gonna autorip it on Amazon right now!
That was one of my last big promotions at Wherehouse as the company declared bankruptcy in October of 1991, at which time I started Rock ‘n Retail!
Hope you enjoyed my little story!