"Not alone in Hayden." The story of Dirt Bike Annie starts at NYU in the mid 90’s, now you being the savvy reader that you are, are
probably asking yourself why am I reading about Dirt Bike Annie when in my palms I’m holding a compact disc that clearly says mc
chris on it? Well, I think it’s safe to say that without Dirt Bike Annie there would be no mc chris. Adam Rabuck who started the
band and was mc’s roommate in college would prove to be instrumental in recording and writing most of the music for mc chris in the
early years, the baby years if you will. mc on numerous occasions has told me how being paired with Adam in that Hayden Hall dorm
room saved his life. Adam provided a social spark and a constant soundtrack of pop punk to the room and to mc. Bands like Screeching
Weasel, the Mr. T Experience and Green Day reverberated off the walls and into their heads, inspiring them to make music; without these
muses who knows if either one of them would have started or continued to make music. In the beginning Dirt Bike Annie also featured
Chris Moses who provided the low end and Tim McCarthy on drums. Chris played bass and wrote for The Lee Majors. Luke O’Malley who
wrote and played drums for The Lee Majors was also a mainstay of the group. At a dorm party Adam ran into Dan Paquin who had a
appetite for jamming and he convinced Adam to jam. Shortly after that Dan joined DBA on bass for good. The walls of that dorm room
should be hallowed when you consider the rehearsals and recording sessions that they witnessed by a group of extremely talented people
who were not just working together but rather genuinely having a great time making music.
"These are nights that we keep at 88 Christopher Street." After college Adam and Dan moved into an apartment on Christopher Street,
(88 Christopher Street to be exact) with Jeanie Lee a friend of Adam’s from high school. Most of the early officially released Dirt
Bike Annie music was recorded there as well most of what you hear on this compact disc, the rest was recorded in Hayden Hall. Jeanie
would eventually join DBA and complete the core which would define the band. I was fortunate enough to attend the last house party at
88 Christopher Street. It was such an amazing experience to be surrounded by people who all had a common love of music, at the same time
were tremendously talented, down to earth and accepting of everyone. Shortly thereafter, I joined the Dirt Bike Annie Superstars Fan Club
and like every other member of the fan club I received a tape of some unreleased DBA material and their side projects like: The Bicycles,
The Wyld Scallions, T-Rex Fat Boy’s Club, Agents of Change and mc chris and the Lee Majors whose blurb on the tape said, “mc chris is Dirt
Bike Annie’s comic artist and tour videographer. In return, DBA doubles as his back up band, ‘The Lee Majors.’ If we really cared about
making money, we would take mc chris all the way.” I specifically remember listening to the tape over and over again and becoming a fan
of all of these people collectively and individually. What really struck me was how they were friends and fans of each other. DBA had a
newsletter (done by mc and the band) that they’d mail every few months, it was more of a collage with puzzles, random pictures, and what
everyone was doing. I’m pretty sure that I had met mc at this point, since there was hardly a Dirt Bike Annie show that I wasn’t in attendance
starting from when I first heard the band, at every show you’d see him filming and occasionally opening or closing the set by rapping.
"Goodbye Souse House." Upon 88 Christopher Street’s demise (the lease ran out), Adam, Dan and mc moved to 281 ½ Second Street in Jersey City
and quickly dubbed the place, the Souse House. The Souse House was THE place to see a show. Yeah the ceiling was low and it was as hot as
the 3rd level of Hell but it was the only place where you knew that every band who played was guaranteed to rock your socks off and everyone
was going to have a great time. It was more of a clubhouse than a house because it made total strangers feel welcomed and that they belonged.
You knew everyone who was there was going to be cool and they sincerely cared about the music. Inexplicably (or explicably due to alcohol)
incestuous jam sessions would break out at the end of the night and people would pick up guitars, basses, and microphones, while party goers
would crouch and move along to the beat provided by whoever picked up drumsticks. I have fond memories of picking up a bass with a number of
people on drums while mc rapped into the wee hours. Dirt Bike Annie was often persuaded to play a second set after the jams because they were
the party. It’s crazy to think of all the tremendous bands that played in the space early in their careers. I remember seeing the Ergs! play
their second show, the Unlovables, Attention Deficit, The Lynnwoods, The Proteens, The Shy Guys, The Grand Prixx, Bitch and Moans, and mc chris
solo with all his beats done on the Playstation MTV Music Generator. After years of constant music the neighbors had enough and forced the
landlord not to renew the lease. Dirt Bike Annie continued for years until calling it quits in 2005. You can find almost everything they
recorded on iTunes and add them as a friend at myspace.com/dirtbikeannie Although they never got as big as they deserved, their influence is
Adam continues to play music in The Impluse. Dan continues to play music in Short Attention. Jeanie lives in El Salvador and is writing a book.
Chris was responsible for the Love Lump hoax and currently lives and works in Rhode Island with his cat, Miss Miranda Biscuit. Luke was in
antibalas for 8 years and is currently in the bands: Tangelo, The Incredible Handclap band, and Os Fantasmas.
Jersey Beat review by Oliver Lyons
As the lengthy title says, this is not a new MC Chris album. Rather, it's a 15-song collection of very early MC material recorded in dorm rooms and basements with his backing band The Lee Majors, whom pop-punk fans may know better as the dearly departed Dirt Bike Annie.
Like Lennon meeting McCartney at a church fair or Keanu Reeves meeting Dogstar members at a supermarket, history was made the day the NYU dorm assignment machine stuck one Christopher Ward in the same room as Adam Raybuck. This chance pairing would eventually spawn, influence or somehow assist such bands as The Ergs!, The Unlovables, Short Attention, The Steinways, The Impulse and countless others. Most notably, Chris Ward's "MC Chris" persona was born out of late night jam sessions, parties and roadie-ing with Adam's band Dirt Bike Annie. The songs on this album give no indication of what lay ahead for MC Chris.
Far from the polished rhymes you now hear from MC Chris on the soundtracks to major motion pictures or at sold-out shows, these recordings sound more like a bunch of friends who after a few dozen beers and bong hits decide to pick up some instruments and hit Record on the 8-track. That's because that's pretty much what this is. In between the psychedelic wah-wah guitars, the Casio drumbeats, the movie samples and fart sounds, you can hear MC take his first awkward steps into the world of hip-hop. While often clumsy and overly-verbose, a few songs like "MC Chris Attax" and "MC Chris Number 2000" display the razor-sharp wit and charming self-deprecation that are now hallmarks of his rhymes. The disc even contains a primitive version of his classic "DQ Blizzard" which you can hear in all its fuzzed out, slowed-down glory. While The Lee Majors and Dirt Bike Annie are now sadly just memories, were it not for them there would be no MC Chris; so on behalf of myself and every 300-pound World of Warcraft player living in his mother's basement - thanks, guys.
Razorcake #43 review by Joe Evans III
So there's this guy mc chris. He's a "nerdcore" rapper, which means he has lyrics about Star Wars, "wastin' MC's like they're fuel in Hummers," and his biggest fans wear shirt with the Mozilla Firefox logo. What many of said fans probably don't realize is that he got started making music with the dudes from Dirt Bike Annie, and this is a collection of said music. It's more punk influenced than his current output, and the whole thing is a pretty interesting piece of pop punk (specificially the New York City scene's) history.