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Billy Corgan

Billy Corgan live in Cologne, June 11, 2005.
Background information
Birth name William Patrick Corgan, Jr.
Born March 17, 1967 (1967-03-17) (age 43)
Elk Grove Village, Illinois, U.S.
Genres Alternative rock
Occupations Musician, singer-songwriter, record producer, author
Instruments Vocals
Guitar
Keyboards
Piano
Mellotron
Bass
Sitar[1]
Harmonica
Years active 1985–present
Labels Caroline
Virgin
Reprise
Warner Bros.
Associated acts Smashing Pumpkins
Zwan
Spirits in the Sky
The Jimmy Chamberlin Complex
Starchildren
The Marked
Website Official MySpace
Notable instruments
Fender Billy Corgan Signature Stratocaster

William Patrick "Billy" Corgan, Jr. (born March 17, 1967) is the frontman and sole permanent member of the successful band The Smashing Pumpkins. The band comes from America, where singer, songwriter, guitarist, and studio bassist and keyboardist, "Billy" Corgan grew up and organized the band. Corgan started playing shows around Chicago, Illinois with guitarist James Iha, and a drum machine. The project quickly gained steam with the recruiting of Jimmy Chamberlin, a successful local jazz / polka drummer. In 3 years, The Smashing Pumpkins had completely transformed themselves into a major label success. Strong album sales and arena rock tours pushed the band to a point, where, in 1997 Jimmy Chamberlin was fired for his involvement in touring keyboardist Jonathan Melvoin's fatal drug overdose. Along with keeping The Smashing Pumpkins alive, Corgan has released a solo album, a collection of poetry, written and produced for bands such as Hole, and also been credited for his work on several movie soundtracks. After touring with several replacement drummers and recording an album with electronic drums and guest drummers, Corgan reformed The Smashing Pumpkins with Chamberlin in 2006. They released an Album followed by a mostly sold-out tour and DVD, but Chamberlin departed the band in March 2009, leaving Corgan as the only original member. The Smashing Pumpkins held open auditions for a new drummer in 2009 and after over 1,000 applicants Mike Byrne is working on the next installment of Smashing Pumpkins songs, which have already begun being released on www.smashingpumpkins.com free of charge. He maintains a strong grass-roots following and is known to have direct communication with his fans.

Contents

Life and career

Childhood and formative years

Corgan was born in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, the oldest son of William Corgan Sr., a blues guitarist, and Martha Louise Maes Corgan Lutz. His parents had one more child, Ricky, before divorcing in 1970. William also fathered a half-brother, but Corgan has never found out who he is.[2] His father was soon remarried to a flight attendant, and Corgan and his brother went to live with them in Glendale Heights, Illinois.[3] During this time, Corgan alleges he was subject to much physical and emotional abuse by his stepmother.[4] Corgan's half-brother, Jesse, was born in 1976. Jesse had cerebral palsy, Tourette syndrome, and other disabilities, and Corgan spent a good deal of his youth taking care of and defending him.[5] The two remain close - Jesse joined The Smashing Pumpkins on stage in Chicago in December 2008. When Corgan's father and stepmother separated, all three children would live alone with the stepmother, with both of Corgan's birth parents living separately within an hour's drive.[6]

Corgan, who grew much faster than his fellow students, was a strong athlete in elementary school.[7] In addition to being a member of his Marquardt Middle School baseball team, he collected baseball cards (amassing over 10,000) and listened to every Chicago Cubs game.[7] However, by the time he began attending Glenbard North High School in Carol Stream Illinois, he had become only an average athlete. He decided to start playing guitar when he went over to a friend's house and saw his friend's Flying V.[7] Corgan gave his savings to his father, who bought him a used Les Paul knock-off.[7] Corgan, Sr. steered his son stylistically, encouraging him to listen to Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix. Billy Corgan has mentioned that he is a self-taught guitarist.[6] His musical interests in his formative years included hard rock like Guts-era John Cale, heavy metal pioneers Black Sabbath, and mainstream rock like Queen, Boston, ELO, and Cheap Trick. In high school, Corgan discovered alternative rock through Bauhaus and The Cure.[8]

Corgan performed in a string of bands in high school. One band was called Lex, with guitarist Mike Subrt, bassist Dan Shaw, and drummer Pete Sallis.[citation needed] They performed in a few back yards, garages, and the high school variety show and played two songs - "Bastille Day" by Rush, and "Crazy Train" by Ozzy Osbourne.[citation needed] Corgan graduated as an honor student. Despite grant and scholarship offers from a number of schools, including the University of Michigan, and a tuition fund left by his grandmother,[9] Corgan decided to pursue music full-time.[10] Not finding the Chicago music scene to his liking, he moved from Chicago to St. Petersburg, Florida in 1985 with his first major band, The Marked (so named for the conspicuous birthmarks of both Corgan and drummer Ron Roesing). Not finding success in St. Petersburg, the band dissolved; Corgan moved back to Chicago to live with his father.

Smashing Pumpkins

Corgan met guitarist James Iha while working in a record store, and the two began recording demos, which Corgan describes as "doomy little goth-pop records." After recording their first two demos that Corgan wrote, Iha decided to write one for himself. After looking over it, Corgan criticized it. Iha took this very seriously and did not talk to Corgan for about another two months, until one day they just decided to make some more demos.[11] He then met bassist D'arcy Wretzky after a local show, arguing with her about a band that had just played. Soon after, the Smashing Pumpkins were formed. The trio began to play together at local clubs with only a drum machine for percussion. The band would soon recruit drummer Jimmy Chamberlin to secure a show at the Metro, in Chicago, where they played for the first time as a quartet on October 5, 1988.

Billy Corgan in 1992.

The new band fused diverse threads such as psychedelic rock and heavy metal into a distinctive sound on their inaugural album, Gish (1991). Gish fared better than expected, but the follow-up, Siamese Dream, became a huge hit. The band became known for internal drama during this period, with Corgan frequently characterized in the music press as a "control freak" and a perfectionist because he was said to have often rerecorded Iha and Wretzky's guitar and bass parts on Gish and Siamese Dream. Despite this, the album was well-received by critics, and the songs "Today" and "Disarm" became smash hits.

The band's 1995 follow up effort, the double album Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, was even more successful, spawning a string of hit singles. The album was nominated for seven Grammy awards that year and would eventually be certified nine times platinum in the United States. The song "1979" was Corgan's biggest hit to date, reaching #1 on Billboard's modern rock and mainstream rock charts. Their appearance on Saturday Night Live on November 11, 1995 to promote this material also was the television debut appearance of Corgan's shaved head, which he has maintained consistently ever since. Until that time, Corgan, in typical rockstar fashion, had varied his hairstyles often.

During the album's tour, the band was plagued by Chamberlin's heroin addiction. On July 12, 1996, Chamberlin and touring keyboardist Jonathan Melvoin overdosed in a hotel room. Chamberlin survived, but Melvoin did not. The Pumpkins made the decision to fire Chamberlin and would continue as a trio. Their next effort, 1998's Adore, was undertaken with drum machines and studio drummers, and consisted of more subdued material than the band's previous efforts. Adore earned high praise from some critics and many fans, but other critics and most of the more casual listeners thought the band had strayed too far from its strengths, resulting in a significant decrease in album sales (it sold 1.3 million discs in the U.S.)

Chamberlin was reunited with the band in 1999, and 2000 saw Machina/The Machines of God, a concept album on which the band deliberately played to their public image; critics were again divided, and sales were lower than ever. At the end of the recording for Machina, Wretzky quit the band and was replaced for the upcoming tour by former Hole bassist Melissa Auf der Maur. In 2000, the band released Machina II/The Friends & Enemies of Modern Music for free over the internet.

The Smashing Pumpkins split up later in 2000 and played their last show on December 2 of that year at the Metro.

Solo career

Corgan began writing revealing autobiographical posts on his website and his MySpace page, commenting, "I no longer want to protect the people I tormented."[12] On February 17, 2004, Corgan posted a message in which he blamed guitarist James Iha for the breakup of The Smashing Pumpkins four years prior. He also referred to bassist D'arcy Wretzky as "a mean spirited drug addict."[13] On June 3, 2004 he posted an apology of sorts to Iha, writing that "I love him very, very much...the depth of my hurt is only matched by the depth of my gratitude".[14] In another post, Corgan insulted his former Zwan bandmates, claiming they had been self-conscious about their "indie cred" to the point of hurting those around them. Poking fun at their indie stance, he called them "poseurs" and declared them to be "filthy", opportunistic, and selfish.[15] In late 2004, Corgan published Blinking with Fists, a book of poetry. Despite mixed reviews, the book debuted on the New York Times Best Seller list. It was one of the first books ever written by a rock-star artist that ever got in the list.[citation needed]

In 2004, he began a solo music career, initially performing acoustic folk songs related to Chicago history. He abandoned this style in favor of an electronic/shoegaze/alternative rock sound for his first solo album, The Future Embrace. Released on June 21, 2005 through Reprise Records, it garnered mixed reviews from the press and only sold 69,000 copies.[16] Corgan toured behind his solo album with a touring band that included Linda Strawberry, Brian Liesegang and Matt Walker in 2005. This tour was not as extensive as previous Smashing Pumpkins or Zwan tours.

Smashing Pumpkins revival

In 2005, Corgan took out a full-page ad in Chicago's two major newspapers (The Chicago Tribune and The Chicago Sun-Times) revealing his desire to reform the Smashing Pumpkins.[17] Several days later, Jimmy Chamberlin accepted Billy Corgan's offer for a reunion.[18]

On April 20, 2006 the band's official website confirmed that the group was indeed reuniting.[19] The band went into studio for much of 2006 and early 2007, and performed its first show in seven years on May 22, 2007, with new members Ginger Reyes (bass) and Jeff Schroeder (guitar) replacing Wretzky and Iha. The new album, titled Zeitgeist, was released in the U.S. on July 10, 2007, and debuted at #2 on the Billboard charts. Corgan and the rest of the Pumpkins toured extensively throughout 2007 and 2008, also releasing the EP American Gothic and the singles "G.L.O.W." and "Superchrist". The band is currently working on new material; however, it will move forward without Chamberlin, who left the band again in March 2009.[20]

In summer 2009, Corgan formed the band Spirits in the Sky to play a tribute concert to the late Sky Saxon of the Seeds. He then toured with the band, composed of ex-Catherine member and "Superchrist" producer Kerry Brown, Electric Prunes bassist Mark Tulin, Strawberry Alarm Clock keyboardist Mark Weitz, frequent Corgan collaborator Linda Strawberry, flautist Kevin Dippold, "Superchrist" violinist Ysanne Spevack, new Pumpkins drummer Mike Byrne, and Jane's Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro, playing covers and new Pumpkins material at several clubs in California.[21][22] At the end of the tour, Corgan, Byrne, and Brown headed back to Chicago to begin work on the new Smashing Pumpkins album, Teargarden by Kaleidyscope.[23]

Personal life

Billy Corgan has struggled with depression for much of his life, including bouts of self-injury, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and suicidal thoughts.[24] Corgan attributes this to the abuse he endured as a child, as well as his personal anxieties and issues.[24] While he believes he is far more stable now, he still occasionally battles depression and has become an advocate for support networks.[24]

His mother Martha died in December 1996. The song "For Martha", from Adore, was written in her memory. In the early 2000s, Corgan would name his label Martha's Music after her as well. A picture of Martha as a little girl sitting on a fake moon at Riverview Park is featured on the flipside of the Siamese Dream booklet.[25]

Corgan is an avid sports fan. A childhood fan of the Cubs, he later commented on that team for WXRT DJ Lin Brehmer.[26] He has appeared at Cubs games many times, occasionally throwing the ceremonial first pitch or singing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." He was a devoted fan of the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks in the 1990s, and became personal friends with Dennis Rodman[6] and Chris Chelios.[27] He is a lifelong fan of professional wrestling and self-described "wrestlemaniac,"[28] and appeared in an ECW pro wrestling wielding an acoustic guitar as a weapon.[29] In 2008, the Pumpkins song "Doomsday Clock" was used by Ring of Honor for promotional videos.[30] As far as other entertainment, Corgan once commented that all he watches on TV are "sports and Three Stooges."[31] In March 2008, he was spotted in the crowd at the final day of the cricket test match between New Zealand and England in Wellington.

He incorporates elements of Catholicism and Buddhism into his spiritual philosophy, even though he has not publicly aligned himself with any one faith.[32] On September 9, 2009, Billy launched Everything From Here to There, an interfaith website that is devoted to "Mind-Body-Soul" integration. He mentions praying each morning and night to be able to see through Christ's eyes and feel with his heart.[33] On his drive to create art and music, he said, "God is just out my back door, yet I choose not to visit. I would rather sit alone and scheme on how to be remembered, on what more that I can do here to cement the evidence that I once walked these roads with you. It is a futile exercise. I know it is, and yet I persist."[34]

While Corgan typically avoids discussing US politics, he said after the 2008 presidential election, "I'm very proud of my country right now for doing the right thing."[35] In 2009, he posted a transcript of a webcast by political activist Lyndon LaRouche to the official Smashing Pumpkins forum.[36] On March 10, 2009, Billy Corgan testified in front of congress on behalf of the musicFIRST Coalition. Corgan spoke in favor of H.R. 848, the Performance Rights Act, which gives musicians and artists their share of compensation when their music is played on music radio stations.[37]

Corgan dated Courtney Love prior to her courtship and marriage to Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. In 1993, he married his longtime on-again, off-again girlfriend, museum book restorer and artist Chris Fabian. They were married at a small ceremony at his house in Wrigleyville.[38] Rumors circulated that Corgan and Love rekindled their romance during the Pumpkins' 1994 Lollapalooza tour, after Cobain's death.[39] Corgan and Fabian separated sometime in 1995, and divorced in 1997. Corgan refused to discuss the subject in interviews, saying "There is not and will not be any public record on my marriage - that's one thing I have to draw lines around."[40] He nevertheless described the circumstances of his marriage in his online Confessions, in 2005.[38]

In late 1995[6], he started dating photographer Yelena Yemchuk, who had contributed to several Smashing Pumpkins videos and album art. The 2000 Smashing Pumpkins hit "Stand Inside Your Love" was written about her. He continued to date Yemchuk until around 2004. According to Corgan, his breakup with her contributed to the themes of his 2005 solo release, The Future Embrace.[41] In 2008, Corgan said, "I've had a bad marriage and seven bad girlfriends in a row", a perspective he attributes to his dedication to music.[42]

In early 2006, Corgan moved in with Courtney Love and her daughter, Frances Bean Cobain. According to Love, he had his own wing in her new Hollywood Hills mansion.[43] Two years later, Love criticized Corgan publicly over the latter's alleged refusal to attend Frances' sweet 16 birthday party.[44] In 2009, he was spotted on several occasions with LA weatherforecaster, Jackie Johnson, fueling rumors that the two were dating.[45][46]

Since September 2009, Corgan was reportedly involved romantically with country pop singer and actress Jessica Simpson.[47] [48] [49], although the couple had reportedly split up.[50] [51] According to the photographer Kristen Burns, Corgan and Simpson were working together on the song during the recording sessions to Pumpkins' concept album project Teargarden by Kaleidyscope.[52] [53] In January 2010, the couple has been pictured by Burns in the studio with the producer Kerry Brown who linked to the pictures on his Twitter account.[54] Simpson herself posted a series of messages regarding the common session, saying: "I am blessed. Going over a song with Billy and the boxer." [55] and "He braids my prayers."[56]

Collaborations

In addition to performing, Corgan has produced albums for Ric Ocasek, The Frogs, and Catherine. He shared songwriting credit on several songs on Hole's 1998 album Celebrity Skin; the title track became Corgan's second #1 modern rock hit. He also acted as a consultant for Marilyn Manson during the album Mechanical Animals. He has produced three soundtracks for the movies Ransom (1996), Stigmata (1999) and Spun (2002) in which he appeared as a doctor.[57] Billy appeared at the 1996 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremonies. He inducted one of his biggest musical influences Pink Floyd. He played acoustic guitar during the ceremony with Pink Floyd, when they performed their song "Wish You Were Here". He has collaborated with Tony Iommi, Blindside, New Order and Marianne Faithfull. Corgan would also guide and collaborate with three bands in the 2000s — Breaking Benjamin (during sessions for 2004's We Are Not Alone), Taproot (for Blue-Sky Research, 2005), and Sky Saxon.[58] Corgan appeared as a guest vocalist on the song "Loki Cat" on Jimmy Chamberlin's first solo album Life Begins Again and Chamberlin played drums for the song "DIA" on Corgan's solo debut, where Robert Smith from The Cure teamed up with Billy Corgan to do a cover of the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody". Corgan has worked on Courtney Love's Nobody's Daughter,[59] Garbage vocalist Shirley Manson's debut solo album,[60] and Scorpions' Humanity - Hour 1.[61]

Abandoned projects

With Smashing Pumpkins

Corgan has often mentioned or developed projects that remain commercially unreleased. During the press junkets for 1995's Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, he claimed that the band were planning on an MTV Unplugged appearance and album.[62] In 1998, he spoke of his hope to release a solo acoustic album[63], a sequel to Vieuphoria,[31] and a comprehensive boxset of live Smashing Pumpkins recordings.[31] Around the time of the Pumpkins' disbandment, Corgan explained plans to reissue every Pumpkins album complete with bonus tracks,[64] which has not yet happened. Also at this time, Corgan hoped to record an instrumental progressive rock album with Jimmy Chamberlin and Mike Garson.[64]

The final Smashing Pumpkins concert before the 2000 breakup was recorded professionally, and a DVD of this performance had been mentioned frequently after the breakup but never materialized (though one song from the concert, "An Ode to No One," was later released on the DVD Greatest Hits Video Collection).[65] Meanwhile, the Glass and the Machines of God animated series (written by Jim Evans), a tie-in to the Machina albums, was never completed, though several apparent cuts of episodes were leaked in 2003.

With Zwan

During their brief time together, Zwan recorded "tons of music" outside of their Mary Star of the Sea album,[66] possibly including an entire second album as the "Djali Zwan",[67] but neither the album nor the footage were released, and Zwan's breakup was announced in spring 2003. Corgan later said that there Zwan recorded "tons of music unreleased that will just sit in a box until I can stomach it."[66]

Other projects

In the "About the Author" section of his 2004 poetry book Blinking with Fists, Corgan acknowledged that he was writing a novel. It is not known whether the novel was finished, and no other information about the work has since been made available.

In his June 21, 2006 newspaper ad announcing his intention to revive Smashing Pumpkins, he announced that he was writing an autobiography, titled The Confessions of Billy Corgan.[17] Some excerpts from the work were posted online, but no publishing plans have been announced and Corgan has not publicly spoken of the project in years. In the same newspaper ad, Corgan spoke of a DVD/EP titled ChicagoSongs,[17] a release under his own name featuring songs related to his native Chicago; the project was apparently shelved when he and Jimmy Chamberlin began work on Zeitgeist.

Musical style and influences

Corgan performing in 1995.

When asked in a 1994 Rolling Stone interview about his influences, Corgan replied:

Eight years old, I put on the Black Sabbath record, and my life is forever changed. It sounded so fucking heavy. It rattled the bones. I wanted that feeling. With Bauhaus and The Cure, it was the ability to create a mood and an atmosphere. The air gets heavier. With Jimi Hendrix it was the ability to translate this other level of guitar. Cheap Trick - it was a vocal influence. Although Tom Petersson once told me that Rick Nielsen called us 'tuneless and nonmelodic.'[68]

Although Corgan is not widely recognized for his guitar playing, it has been praised numerous times. Allmusic said "Starla" "proves that Corgan was one of the finest (and most underrated) rock guitarists of the '90s"[69], while Rolling Stone called him and his Smashing Pumpkins bandmates "ruthless virtuosos". Within guitar circles, he has assumed a position of respect. He wrote six articles for Guitar World in 1995, and his solos for "Cherub Rock" and "Geek USA" were included on their list of the top guitar solos of all time. His solo for "Soma" was #24 on Rolling Stone's list of the top guitar solos.[70] He is a fan of Eddie Van Halen and interviewed him in the late nineties for Guitar World.

His bass playing, which has featured on nearly every Smashing Pumpkins album, was influenced by post-punk figures like Peter Hook and Simon Gallup.[71]

Corgan has praised Radiohead, saying "if they're not the best band in the world, then they're one of the best", and is also a fan of Pantera.[72] Pantera producer Terry Date would later be brought in to produce the Smashing Pumpkins' Zeitgeist. Other favorites include Rush, Metallica, Queen, Dinosaur Jr., My Bloody Valentine,[73] and Spiritualized.[31]

His literary influences include William S. Burroughs and Philip K. Dick.[31]

Instruments

Corgan played (during the Gish-Siamese Dream era) a customized '57 Reissue Fender Stratocaster equipped with three Fender Lace Sensor pickups (the Lace Sensor Blue in the neck position, the Lace Sensor Silver in the middle position, and the Lace Sensor Red at the bridge position). It also has a five-position pickup selector switch which he installed himself. This battered Strat became his number one guitar by default. He used to have a '74 Strat that was stolen shortly after Gish was completed.

Corgan also used a wide variety of guitars on Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. On "Where Boys Fear to Tread", Billy used a Les Paul Junior Reissue, and on "Tonight Tonight" he used a '72 Gibson ES-335. He is also known to use a '74 Strat that has since then been painted baby blue. That guitar was used on the recordings for "Bullet with Butterfly Wings" and also "Muzzle", because the heavier wood gave it the basic Strat sound with a bit more bottom.

During the recording and tour of the album Zeitgeist, Billy used a Schecter C-1 EX baritone, finished in black with Tony Iommi signature pickups.

Corgan also endorsed Reverend Guitars in his Zwan era, most notably playing a Reverend Slingshot.

In 2008 Billy released to the market his own Fender Stratocaster. This new guitar was made to Corgan’s exact specs to create his famous mid-’90s buzzsaw tone, the instrument features three DiMarzio pickups (two custom for this instrument), a string-through hardtail bridge and a satin nitrocellulose lacquer finish. When playing live he uses both his signature Strats as well as two other Fender Strats one in red with a white pick guard and one in silver-grey with a black pick guard , a Gibson Tony Iommi signature SG and his Schecter C-1, however the Schecter is only used on the Zeitgeist song "United States".

Solo discography

On May 24, 2007 at den Atelier, Luxembourg City.

Albums

Singles

Soundtrack work

Albums featured

  • 1991: Sparkle (by Catherine, The EP is produced by Corgan)
  • 1994: Songs About Girls (by Catherine, The song "It's No Lie" is produced by Corgan)
  • 1994: Chante Des Chanson Sur Les Filles (by Catherine, The EP is produced by Corgan as "Johhny Goat")
  • 1994: Sleepy EP (by Catherine, The EP is produced by Corgan)
  • 1996: Guitars That Rule the World, Vol. 2: Smell the Fuzz:The Superstar Guitar Album (by Various Artists, Corgan is credited as writer and performer of "Ascendo")
  • 1997: Starjob (by The Frogs, The EP is produced by Corgan as "Johhny Goat")
  • 1997: Troublizing (by Ric Ocasek, Corgan is credited as writer of "Asia Minor" and playing guitar on "The Next Right Moment", "Crashland Consequence", "Situation", "Fix on You" and "People We Know")
  • 1998: Celebrity Skin (by Hole, Corgan is credited as writer of "Celebrity Skin", "Awful", "Hit So Hard", "Malibu", "Dying" and "Petals")
  • 1998: "I Belong to You" single (by Lenny Kravitz, Corgan remixed the second track "If You Can't Say No (Flunky In The attic Mix)")
  • 1998 Mechanical Animals by Marilyn Manson, Corgan performed backing vocals on Speed of Pain, although not credited, he is thanked in the album credits.
  • 2000: Iommi (by Tony Iommi, Corgan is credited as writer of and vocalist on "Black Oblivion")
  • 2001: Get Ready (by New Order, Corgan is contributing voice on "Turn My Way")
  • 2002: Kissin' Time (by Marianne Faithfull, Corgan is credited as writer of "Wherever I Go", "I'm on Fire" and contributing on "Something Good")
  • 2003: "Lights Out" single (by Lisa Marie Presley, Corgan is credited as writer of "Savior")
  • 2004: We Are Not Alone (by Breaking Benjamin, Corgan is credited as writer of "Follow", "Forget It" and "Rain")
  • 2004: The Essential Cheap Trick (by Cheap Trick, Corgan is playing guitar on the live recording of the track "Mandocello")
  • 2004: About a Burning Fire (by Blindside, Corgan is playing guitar on "Hooray, It's L.A.")
  • 2005: Life Begins Again (by Jimmy Chamberlin Complex, Corgan is contributing voice on "Loki Cat")
  • 2005: Blue-Sky Research (by Taproot, Corgan wrote the track "Lost in the Woods" and co-wrote the tracks "Violent Seas" and "Promise")
  • 2006: ONXRT:Live From The Archives Volume 9 (A compilation CD from the radio station 93 WXRT in Chicago features the live recording of the track "A100")
  • 2007: Humanity Hour 1 (by Scorpions, Corgan is contributing voice on "The Cross")

Guitar Hero appearance

Corgan appears as a playable character in Guitar Hero: World Tour.

References

  1. ^ http://glittercop.blogspot.com/2009/10/deep-into-song-3-today-billy-finished.html
  2. ^ Corgan, Billy. "The Toy Hammer." The Confessions of Billy Corgan. 2005-06-02.
  3. ^ DeRogatis, Jim. "Rock and Roll's Best and Worst Chicago Songs." Chicago Sun-Times. 2003/07/30.
  4. ^ Corgan, Billy. "Following the Moon." The Confessions of Billy Corgan. 2005/07/01.
  5. ^ Wilson, Beth (1995-04-17). "He's My Brother.". Daily Herald. 
  6. ^ a b c d Howard Stern interviews Billy Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlin (mp3 recording). 2000/02/29.
  7. ^ a b c d Blashill, Pat (October 1996). "Out on a Limb". Details Magazine. 
  8. ^ DeRogatis, pg. 76
  9. ^ Fricke, David. "Smashing Pumpkins Look Back in Wonder". Rolling Stone Magazine. 2000-12-20.
  10. ^ Corgan, Billy. "Eddy Street." The Confessions of Billy Corgan. 2005/04/15.
  11. ^ Corgan, Billy. Interview. Vieuphoria.
  12. ^ Spitz, Marc. "Head On," SPIN vol. 21, no. 8. August 2005.
  13. ^ Corgan, Billy (2004-02-17). "Smashing Pumpkins (weblog)" (http). LiveJournal.com. http://billycorgan.livejournal.com/2004/02/17/. Retrieved 2006-06-14. 
  14. ^ Corgan, Billy (2004-06-03). "Smashing Pumpkins (weblog)" (http). LiveJournal.com. http://billycorgan.livejournal.com/2004/06/03/. Retrieved 2006-06-14. 
  15. ^ Corgan, Billy (2004-08-03). "Smashing Pumpkins (weblog)" (http). LiveJournal.com. http://billycorgan.livejournal.com/2004/08/03/. Retrieved 2008-05-04. 
  16. ^ "Smashing Pumpkins Reunite... Sort Of" (http). Pitchfork Media. http://pitchforkmedia.com/page/news/35839/Smashing_Pumpkins_Reunite_Sort_Of#35839. Retrieved 2007-05-14. 
  17. ^ a b c Corgan, Billy. "A Message to Chicago From Billy Corgan." Published in Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune on 2005/06/21.
  18. ^ Spegel, Ashley (2005-06-28). "Chamberlin's In For Pumpkins Reunion... To Nobody's Surprise". Chart. http://www.chartattack.com/news/38991/chamberlins-in-for-pumpkins-reunion-to-nobodys-surprise. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  19. ^ Smashing Pumpkins Site Says 'It's Official' — Band Has Reunited
  20. ^ Smashing Pumpkins Sheds Chamberlain Yahoo News, March 21, 2009
  21. ^ "Dave Navarro and Mark Weitz join Spirits in the Sky tour roster".
  22. ^ "BC Solo tour ends".
  23. ^ http://twitter.com/studiodog/status/3749867800
  24. ^ a b c Joel Schumacher (director). (2008-03-03). Half of Us. [FLV]. mtvU. http://www.halfofus.com/video/?videoID=33&chapterID=1. 
  25. ^ Corgan, Billy. "In the Shadows of Ruins". The Confessions of Billy Corgan (weblog). 2005-05-30.
  26. ^ Maller, Ben. "Chicago rocker Billy Corgan covers Cubs." Ben Maller. 2004/06/29.
  27. ^ James VanOsdol interviews Billy Corgan. Audio broadcast: WKQX. Aired 2000/11/29.
  28. ^ "Billy Corgan is Ready to Rumble." Spin Magazine. 2000-04-04.
  29. ^ Billy Corgan on ECW. Video available: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3o2LY9uU6M&NR=1
  30. ^ "Smashing Pumpkins - Doomsday Clock featuring ROH Wrestling (video)". www.rohwrestling.com and The Smashing Pumpkins. Posted to YouTube.
  31. ^ a b c d e Listessa Interviews Billy Corgan. 1998/05/29. Retrieved on 2007/09/09.
  32. ^ http://www.consciouschoice.com/2005/cc1806/corgan1806.html
  33. ^ http://www.everythingfromheretothere.com/2009/09/21/jeshua-my-lord/
  34. ^ "Steps Across the Way". EverythingFromHereToThere.com. 2009-11-04.
  35. ^ "Stage Banter". 2008-11-04.
  36. ^ "Culture: Restore What We've Lost, Post request from Billy". Official Smashing Pumpkins Forum. 2009-02-17.
  37. ^ http://www.smashingpumpkins.com/pages/news/billy-corgan-speaks-at-congressional-hearing
  38. ^ a b Corgan, Billy. "Wedding Bells Chime." The Confessions of Billy Corgan. 2005/05/26.
  39. ^ Kelly, Christina. "Smashing Pumpkins-The Multi-Platinum Band is over the infighting but can the harmony last?" US Magazine, December 1995.
  40. ^ Marks, Craig. "Zero Worship." Spin Magazine: June 1996.
  41. ^ Corgan, Billy. "Blue Room Interview, Part I." Recorded 2005. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neC8TzeR0tg
  42. ^ Kot, Greg. "Billy Corgan dishes on the Smashing Pumpkins: The past is dead to me". Chicago Tribune.
  43. ^ Friedman, Roger (2006-06-22). "Courtney Love to Play London’s West End" (http). Fox News. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,200533,00.html. Retrieved 2007-06-01. 
  44. ^ "Courtney Love Slams Billy Corgan Over Party," StarPulse.com (July 14, 2008).
  45. ^ "Corgan & L.A. Weather Gal -- A Smashing Couple," TMZ.com (June 12, 2009).
  46. ^ "Jackie Johnson Fashion Watch," Soup Cans. Accessed on July 16, 2009.
  47. ^ http://www.spin.com/articles/billy-corgans-new-label-release-germs-songs
  48. ^ http://www.eonline.com/uberblog/b156942_jessica_simpson_smitten_with_pumpkins.html
  49. ^ People Online reports on Corgan's relationship with Jessica Simpson. 2009/12/10. Retrieved on 2009/12/24.
  50. ^ "Jessica Simpson: I "Almost Puked" Standing Next to Skinny Models". Us Weekly. 2010-01-15. http://www.usmagazine.com/healthylifestyle/news/jessica-simpson-i-almost-puked-standing-next-to-skinny-models-2010151. Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  51. ^ Huguenin, Patrick (2010-01-15). "Newsstand Junkie: No end to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's relationship woes". NYDailyNews.com. http://www.nydailynews.com/gossip/2010/01/15/2010-01-15_newsstand_junkie_no_end_to_brad_pitt_and_angelina_jolies_relationship_woes.html. Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  52. ^ KristinBurns (2010-01-07). "Twitter / Kristin Burns". Twitter. http://twitter.com/kristinburns/status/7470973949. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  53. ^ Donaldson-Evans, Catherine (2010-01-13). "Jessica Simpson Making Music, Laughter with Billy Corgan". People. http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20336555,00.html. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  54. ^ kathleen (2010-01-13). "Jessica Simpson Tweets “about” Billy Corgan". JessandAshlee.com. http://www.jessandashlee.com/jessica-simpson-tweets-about-billy-corgan/. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  55. ^ JessicaSimpson (2010-01-13). "Twitter / Jessica Simpson". Twitter. http://twitter.com/JessicaSimpson/status/7691869182. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  56. ^ JessicaSimpson (2010-01-13). "Twitter / Jessica Simpson". Twitter. http://twitter.com/JessicaSimpson/status/7699508056. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  57. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0283003/fullcredits#cast
  58. ^ "Superchrist lives!", smashingpumpkins.com, January 9, 2008, retrieved 18-06-2009
  59. ^ "Courtney Is Cleared, Ready to Rock." Rolling Stone. 2006/02/03.
  60. ^ SHIRLEY'S ALL STARS
  61. ^ SCORPIONS: New CD To Feature Guest Appearance By BILLY CORGAN
  62. ^ Corgan, Billy. (Interview Subject). IMusic Interview - Live in Dublin. 1996/05/11.
  63. ^ Total Guitar Magazine, July 1998.
  64. ^ a b Kaufman, Gil (2000-12-08). "Pumpkins To Head Into Afterlife With Reissues, Corgan Says". VH1. http://www.vh1.com/artists/news/1374954/20001207/smashing_pumpkins.jhtml. Retrieved 2007-10-14. 
  65. ^ Corgan, Billy. Stage Banter. Act IV - Cabaret Metro. July 7, 2001.
  66. ^ a b Snierson, Dan. "Window To His Soul." Entertainment Weekly. May 23, 2005.
  67. ^ Fricke, David. "Corgan Unplugs Zwan." Rolling Stone Magazine, 2003/03/23. Accessed on 2007/09/09.
  68. ^ "Rolling Stone Interview, 1994.". http://www.starla.org/articles/rs94.htm. Retrieved 2007-06-08. 
  69. ^ Prato, Greg. "Pisces Iscariot" (http). Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=Ahx65mpbf9fco. Retrieved 2006-10-07. 
  70. ^ "The 25 Coolest Guitar Solos". RollingStone.com. 2007-08-06. http://www.rollingstone.com/rockdaily/index.php/2007/08/06/the-25-coolest-guitar-solos/. Retrieved 2006-08-12. 
  71. ^ "CUTTING ROOM FLOOR: SMASHING PUMPKINS INTERVIEW OUTTAKES". EQ Magazine online. September 2008.
  72. ^ Interview: Billy Corgan. INSite Magazine. 2000-05-14.
  73. ^ McGlinchey, Joe (January 1996). "My Bloody Valentine". Perfect Sound Forever. http://www.furious.com/Perfect/mbv.html. Retrieved 2008-05-12. "Also noted is their influence on Billy Corgan, who recruited the engineer of 'Loveless', Alan Moulder, for the latest Smashing Pumpkins album." 

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

William Patrick Corgan, Jr. (born March 17, 1967), most commonly known as Billy Corgan, is an American vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter best known for his work in the alternative rock band The Smashing Pumpkins.

Sourced

  • The simplest way that I can understand therapy is that we're born a certain way, we're taught to be something different, and we spend our whole lives trying to unravel it and ultimately align ourselves with who we really are. Life, experiences, traumas -- whatever -- they all add up to make you some altered version of what you are. So there's this battle that goes on between what you are and what you become, and it's been very important for me to unravel what I was taught to be or what I became. and to draw a direct parallel to music -- the closer I get back to being who I really am, the stronger the music gets, because I think what talent I do have is connected to that person, it's not a manipulative process, it's intuitive. You can learn about chords and guitars, but there's a piece of you that makes it individual, and it's been a slow process for me to become whatever it is that I'm supposed to be.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996
  • I think the original, 'They're the next Jane's Addiction' things that people said about us in the beginning have been pretty much wiped out.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • I have a hard time thinking of men trying to sing my songs, because I think my perspective is very much feminine... For me the idea of having a feminine perspective is a willingness to be vulnerable. It's very easy to cock-rock and posture. I can't help but wear my heart on my sleeve—I'm like nervous endings. That's just the way that I am and, to me, that's very female because it's not a male thing to do. A male thing to do would be to fuckin' posture.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • The closer I get back to being who I really am, the stronger the music gets.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • When you move artistically, the natural inclination is to denounce everything that's gone before.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • My earliest memory is of feeling different. My parents told me that I wasn't like other children.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • To me, music was about being accepted and escaping from this crummy existence.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • The Smashing Pumpkins was never meant to be a small band. It was going to either be a big band, or a no band.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • We have a problem with any labels that people try to hang on us, because all it does is drag you down.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • People act like Nirvana invented grunge; they just took it and personified it.
    • Stapleton, Jim. Smashing Pumpkins (Interview disk and fully illustrated book). Carlton Books Ltd. 1996.
  • About six months ago, I listened to Siamese Dream. That was the first time I'd ever really heard my own album, because I had separated from the experience of making the record. And it really moved me. It made me cry, it's so beautiful.
    • "Out on a Limb." Details Magazine. October 1996.
  • This is not a reaction against a negative world. It's a response to a negative world.
    • regarding Adore, Guitar World. July 1998.
  • People always called The Cure gloomy, but listening to The Cure made me happy. There was something about the gloominess that gave me comfort, and I think we're the same way.
    • Corgan, William. Interview. Playboy. (Month?), 1997.
  • Music is 99% of my life. But I know I need a break. Besides, if you give people too much, they start to not want it. We need to restrain ourselves.
    • USA Today. Date???
  • The Pumpkins love rock-and-roll, we absolutely love it, but we also think it's a flatulent, ego-serving kiddie playground. You can have your cake and eat it too.
    • "Out on a Limb." Details Magazine. October 1996.
  • ...Instead of taking the 'I'm cool, I hope you adore me' path (with my music), I chose the path of how to connect. I think that's the reason a lot of people feel a deeper connection with our band than other bands, and I also feel that's why people polarize on us. If you don't get it, it seems preposterous; if you do get it, it's really heavy -- it has a weight to it.
    • "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Success." LIVE! Magazine. August 1996.
  • There's a really a cold, cold side to my personality that I'm not really comfortable with. I'm constantly dealing with that side of my personality versus my overly sentimental side… There's just a side that's a real motherfucker side; it's nothing I want to admit or even look at. It's where a lot of my strength lies. It's been the part of me that's been able to steel my spine against situations that probably would have broken a lot of people, or caused them to jump off the loop.
    • "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Success." LIVE! Magazine. August 1996.
  • For a 6-foot-3 guy with no hair and a whiny voice, I've done all right.
    • USA Today. Date???
  • Actually, I was having dinner with Michael (Stipe, of R.E.M.) when our second album went platinum, which up until that point was the highest success we'd ever had. And he turned to me during dinner and said, 'Welcome to the deep waters, kid.' I'll never forget that.
    • Icon Magazine. April 1998.
  • One of the other reasons that we quit having journalists come here is because they would kind of hang out for several days, and they'd see me around at the clubs, and the story would get written and it would be me and my 'disciples' or my 'acolytes.' The word acolyte - that's like fuck you. These are my friends, but because they're not Billy Corgan or Helena Christensen, they become my 'posse' or my 'followers,' and it's like, fuck you for insulting my friends like that. That's so fucking incredible to me.
    • Icon Magazine. April 1998.
  • I don't necessarily believe that the sting of failure is a bad thing. It gives you a certain amount of freedom to just say fuck it!
    • Guitar World. July 1998.
  • My mother came to a Smashing Pumpkins gig once, and I was wearing a dress. She was very upset. She said, 'Everyone's gonna think you're a fag.' I said,'Well, they already think I'm an asshole.'
    • Rolling Stone. 23 January 1997.
  • It's about the girlfriend who left me last year. I tried to put all my anger in those words, even though I'm just as much to blame for the break-up. 'Soma' is based on the idea that a love relationship is almost the same as opium: it slowly puts you to sleep, it soothes you, and gives you the illusion of sureness and security. Very deceivable.
    • regarding "Soma"; van den Berg, Erik. "Smashing Pumpkins." Oor. 10 June 1993.
  • We're like a really nice drink. We help people get through the day--we make life a little sunnier. I don't think we have any profound effect. If anybody has had a profound effect, it's The Beatles, and their effect is still minimal. There are things in the world way more important than music. Family is 50 times more important than music.
    • Corgan, William. Interview. Playboy. (Month?), 1997.
  • ...What people miss about (Marilyn) Manson is that he is just reflecting, he's an artist, people want to focus that energy on him, but it's not really him, it's really about you. So for every guy sitting there with a beer and a .45 in his belt, Manson is just speaking to that end of society. He's speaking as an artist. He's not speaking as himself, and that's where people get really lost with Manson.
    • Corgan, William. Interview. 1998 Pre-Grammy Show. MTV. 25 February 1998.
  • I get more out of life just being myself, by just being a human being. Not by being a rock star, not by being whatever. Sometimes I act like a jerk, but I think people respect me for being myself. That's the ultimate thing about the Smashing Pumpkins.
    • Lewman, Mark. Dirt Magazine. 1992.
  • I'm Irish and I was born on St. Patrick's Day. I'm lucky sevens.
    • Corgan, William. Interview. Chicago Sports Channel. April 1997.

Unsourced

  • Music's pretty cool and I'm glad to be a part of it. Sometimes when you reach for the stars, you end up in the fucking shit. I don't believe in God. I don't believe in America. I don't believe in rock-and-roll. I believe in me.
  • If you take any band that's ascended to stadium rock and look at their live show it becomes a series of everybody-put-your-hands-in-the-air singalongs. Why is that? Because they're dealing with the lowest common denominator of the musical audience -- the least amount of sophistication and the least amount of emotional connection with the band... And sometimes when we play, I feel that people are only there to hear 'Disarm' or 'Today' and they don't give a fuck about the rest of the show or who we are as people, yet they want some emotion from us.
  • Great music completely obliterates any conceptions of genre.
  • Why do I need 1,000 people validating my existence?
  • Don't judge yourself by somebody else's standards. You will always lose.
  • Life is everything and nothing all at once.
  • Everything about life makes me lonely.
  • If practice makes perfect and nobody's perfect then why practice?
  • If I had spent fourteen months in a small room with Jesus, I'd want to fist fight with him.
  • We are, we have been, and always will be the Smashing Pumpkins.
  • Once a pumpkin, always a pumpkin.
  • Been there, done that, seen it, heard it, pissed on it.
    • from a SPIN magazine article
  • Some people want to express...apathy with noise and brutality...It's the want to transcend all that, to find some deeper essence in life that drives me.
  • When I watch a puppet show, I'm not watching the puppets -- I'm trying to see who's pulling the strings.
  • Everyone has a misguided perception of my brain. When people ask me questions about being sad, or thinking sad, or wanting to be sad, or do I listen to sad songs, it makes me think that I must be sad.
    • from a 'Rockline' interview
  • The basic thing is just fuck everybody. It's that feeling where no one understands: 'Who the fuck are my friends? Fuck you. Fuck everybody. Fuck everything.' It's just that thought - pure frustration.
    • regarding "Fuck You (An Ode to No One)"
  • And with 'disconnection,' we're talking about different levels of existence here, like in high school. I'd sit and look at that fuckin' clock and think, 'I'm not gonna make it! I can't make through the rest of this day - I'm gonna freak out, I'm gonna fuckin' strangle this teacher, I'm gonna fuckin' shoot this guy next to me!' Well how do you get through that? You just turn yourself off. How do you get through, like, your fuckin' parent beating you over the head? You just shut it off.
    • regarding the "disconnection" lyric in "Fuck You (An Ode to No One)"
  • I don't know if God would agree with me, but believing in God is kind of unimportant when compared to believing in yourself. Because if you go with the idea that God gave you a mind and an ability to judge things, then he would want you to believe in yourself and not worry about believing in him. By believing in yourself you will come to the conclusion that will point to something.
  • The thing that makes it all worth it is when someone comes up and says, 'I had a really hard time in my life and your album really helped me.' As long as that happens, all the idiots in the world and all the stupid press can say what they want to; it just doesn't matter.
  • You see all those empty seats? That's not who we play for -- we play for you. I want you to remember we won't forget you -- so don't you forget about us.
    • to diehard fans who stayed at a concert for "Silverfuck"
  • This is war, motherfucker, and don't you forget it. It's us versus them, and if you're giving in you're giving up.
    • from the introduction to The Aeroplane Flies High box set
  • In the beginning, I just viewed them as a cute teen band riding the grunge wave, then they seemed to 'go away' for awhile, so when I heard that they were 'all grown up,' I didn't think much of it ... but when I came across what they were doing, I was struck by the brilliance of it, and the honesty in it, and realized how wrong I'd been. ... Silverchair's mature work evokes for me the best of highly melodic, emotional music with a true understanding of rock grandeur...those are rare forces, not very often put together.
    • "on Silverchair's Young Modern album"
  • Music has basically followed a shallow route for 50 years. People come along, do something really cool and different, everyone copies them, the original gets diluted, distorted, and eventually the diluted, in most cases, achieves more success than the thing that started it. And I kinda thought the alternative scene was gonna be different: We thought 'Brave new world!' So it's really weird to be competing against the imitators. It wasn't always comfortable competing against Nirvana, and it was certainly not healthy living under that shadow at times. But at least there was honor in it. We always respected that it was a great band - Pearl Jam too. But competing against Bush?! It's nothing to get your dick hard about, you know what i mean? There's no mojo in that!
  • As a 28 year old who's lived long enough to know the difference, I know now that the feelings I felt at 16 were not necessarily correct. But however overly dramatic, the desperation and hopelessness I felt at 16 was my reality.
  • I think sex would be the keyword. Our music is kind of like having sex. Well, sometimes you go fast sometimes you go slow sometimes you stop.
    • On the Pumpkins' style and their dynamics. Part of an interview on the Mashed Potatoes Box Set. Disc 4 track 1.

External links

Wikipedia
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Simple English

File:Billy
Billy Corgan on stage.

William Patrick "Billy" Corgan, Jr. (born March 17, 1967) is the singer and guitarist play for the American band The Smashing Pumpkins. Corgan and James Iha formed the band in 1988.








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