As music nerds, it’s always fascinating to us to learn about prominent musicians’ origin stories.
Especially when those stories involve the humble beginnings of not one, but two, artists who went on to be known names in their own right- Wayne Static and Billy Corgan.
To that end, not quite sure how we missed the memo on this one, but holy crap – these two were in a band together?
In the late 80’s in Chicago, there was a fast-rising prog rock band called Deep Blue Dream that was starting to sell out shows across the city.
Known back then by his actual birth name, Wayne Wells, and not yet having adopted the “Static” moniker, Wayne was the mastermind behind the group as well as the frontman.
One night, he was blown away by a then-unknown guitarist named Billy Corgan who had just recently started Smashing Pumpkins.
As Wayne would later recall: “(Corgan’s band) was horrible but Billy just shined. The way he played guitar was just incredible. I went up to him after a set and asked him if he wanted to join my band and he immediately said yes because we were a popular band at the time … He actually played in both of our bands for about a year.”
While Wayne was enamored with Corgan’s guitar playing, interestingly enough, he was not a fan of his singing voice:
“He would try to sing backup but his voice was just horrible… We wouldn’t let him sing.
We’d be like, ‘Stop trying to sing. It sounds horrible. It just doesn’t fit. He’s got one of those voices where like when he sings on his own, it’s got a charm to it and it really works with his songs. But it didn’t work with my songs.'”
Reflecting back on what the band sounded like before his passing, Wayne said: “…At the time, Deep Blue Dream was much more like what the Pumpkins were like in the early days. Much more melodic and hippied and poppy and nothing at all like Static-X. It was really totally a whole different thing. But the funny this is we used to call Billy ‘Little Wayne.’”
Wild. Check out Deep Blue Dream’s music for yourself below, along with some kind words Billy had to say about his time in the band and his thoughts about Wayne after his tragic passing: