31 Days of Digital Mixtapes, Day Twenty-Nine:
The Songs of Tony Sly
I’m breaking my 31 Days of Digital Mixtapes rules for today’s mixtape. My main rule was that each mix would include ten songs. As you listen through today’s Tony Sly mixtape, you’ll notice there are actually 33 songs instead of 10. While I apologize for breaking the rules, it just had to happen. That’s because Fat Wreck Chords put out their 33-song tribute album to the late great Tony Sly. For the uninitiated, Tony was the lead singer of No Use For a Name, and also carved out a nice career for himself as a solo artist. Tragically, he died in 2012, leaving behind a loving family. I don’t know any of the Slys, but I do know how much Tony’s music meant to me; both in NUFAN and as a solo artist. More Betterness has safely cemented a place in my Top 10 albums of all time list. His music always spoke to me and had a way of making me feel better and inspiring me to be better. It’s weird thing when someone in the public eye who had a profound influence on you dies. I didn’t know the guy in real life, but through his music and live shows I attended, he spoke to me. That’s why I always felt weird talking about how his death affected me. It felt almost selfish in a sense because here I was only a guy who grew up listening to Tony’s music and not knowing him personally. Listening to his music will forever be bittersweet for me now, but I still listen to it with pride.
After he died, the first thing that jumped in my head was, “Fat needs to make a comp to help benefit his family.” A little over a year later, here it is. I’m honestly surprised at how in-depth it is. The album pays tribute to every aspect of Tony Sly’s career and is filled with some of the genre’s heaviest hitters – both bands that definitely influenced No Use For a Band and bands that have been influenced by No Use For a Name. It’s an eclectic mix to be sure, but it’s amazing. It’s a tough listen for a fan – especially the songs geared towards Tony’s daughter now that I’m a father myself.
None of the bands seem to be on auto-pilot. It’s a fitting tribute to an amazing songwriter, musician, and person. I think if Tony was still alive to here it, he’d be pretty damn proud of it. While I’m sad about the circumstances that happened to inspire this compilation, I’m happy that the proceeds of it will go to the Tony Sly Memorial Fund to help his family financially. Use my Spotify playlist to take a listen, then consider picking it up through Fat Wreck Chords to make sure the maximum amount gets donated to the family.