Sprout was a Pop Punk band from Long Island, New York based primarily out of Syosset, NY. The band was in existence from 1997 until 2003.
Lee Kaufman, J.T. Turret and the bands first drummer Dave B. began jamming together in April of 1997. The first songs were "Used and Abused", "Procrastinator","Sweatpants Bandit", "Hidden Society", and a song that eventually became known as "Shot Blank". At a Massapequa Bowl show, Sprout got their official name from a friend, Jordan Plosky, who was wearing a t-shirt with the Jolly Green Giant's lovable offspring "Sprout". In the last week of August 1997, Dave Pollack joined the band on bass guitar. Sprout's first official show was played at a church in Garden City, NY.
Throughout the summer friend/lyricist Matt Hollander had been learning to play the trumpet and he joined Sprout on his song "Procrastinator" at the first show, by the second show Matt (MC Hollis) was an official band member singing and playing trumpet on 6 songs. Shortly after that, Sprout had gotten too many negative comments by people disgusted by Matt's trumpeting, so that was Tyrone's (Matt's Trumpet's) final show. Jon who was the drummer of hardcore band Diaboius was added on trumpet and his friend Pete joined on saxophone.
In the midst of all this Sprout had been recording with Scott Ferreira of Time Frame on his digital 8-track. It took three months to record 5 songs. The demo was self-released at a Battle of the Bands show and many copies were sold. The demo was distributed in upstate NY by Hoodwinked and on Long Island by Eiffel Trousers Records .
After signing to ETR (Eiffel Trousers Records ), Sprout began to break back into the local ska/punk scene. Sprout played multiple shows with WCF, Freaks from the Apocalypse, 48 in the Basement, Channel 59, S.A.D.,The Microwave Orphans, Chimi-Changa, and Who Cares and became close friends with all of them. Compared to the previous year, Sprout had gained a huge following, and decided to head back into the studio again.
The self-titled 'EP' was recorded, mixed, and mastered at Gateway Studios in North Babylon in 22 hours over four days in late June. It received great reviews in publications like Newsday, The Island Ear, In Music We Trust, and Under The Volcano, and got Sprout named "band of the week" on the popular commercial radio station WLIR 92.7fm. Shortly after this, Dave Pollack left the band, to be replaced on bass guitar by Dave Bruno (of Bugsy).
By the end of that August, Sprout had began to make a nice following for itself on Long Island. Unfortunately this was the beginning of the college school year and JT, Lee, and Hollis were off to college. Sprout returned for 2 shows over Thanksgiving break with their summer '98 line-up. One at Deja1 in which never made it to the stage due to a riot between punkers and bouncers, which resulted in the termination of all punk/ska shows at the club.
Things weren't looking good for Dave Bruno either due to his hectic work schedule and commitment to the band Mad Cow Dizeaze 182. Sprout was on the verge of breaking up the band, and even billed the 11/28/98 show as "Sprout's Last Show". After discussing the bitter end for a while, the band decided if they were going to stay together they needed a band based on friendship and respect, not just music and money. So they invited 2 extremely close friends into the band. Jordan (PK) Plosky on drums and Josh Link (DJ Missing Link) on turntables. At the recommendation of Freaks From The Apocalypse singer Bob Ciani, they also recruited George McRedmond (ex Embarrassing Rex / Freaks From the Apocalypse) from Islip Terrace on bass in January 1999. Jordan and George's musical influences and styles were a perfect match for JT and Lee and this core group came together into a tight group quickly. This "Rebirth" lineup spent most of the year rehearsing and writing new material while occasionally playing local shows and shows in New York City.
Victim of the Green (1999 - 2001)Edit
In the summer of 1999, Sprout entered Strong Island Studios to record their first full length CD/LP "Victim of the Green". On this album, the band tried to showcase its genre-mixing songwriting style (nicknamed "SpROCK") by including straightforward pop punk songs along with straight hip-hop songs. The band recorded 9 new songs as well as re-recorded some previous songs with the new lineup. In the meantime, the band gained some steam by being included on the Long Island Ska Volume 2 compilation. The "Victim of the Green" LP was then mixed by Chris Fasulo and released on April 20th of 2000. Most of that summer was spent promoting the new CD. Singles "Skim" and "Straight to the Core" got the attention of quite a few local radio stations including WLIR (92.7 FM), Hofstra radio and stations in Connecticut. Due to the popularity of these singles, Sprout was asked to be direct support for The Mighty Mighty Bosstones at the Vanderbilt in Plainview (February of 2001). During this time, Sprout began focusing more on being a more straightforward rock band using various influences from other musical genres, rather than being a band that would play any style of music. Because of this, the focus shifted away from more hip-hop based songs moving forward. Due to this, Sprout parted ways with MC Hollis (Matt Hollander) and DJ Missing Link (Josh Link). Sprout's new focus allowed them to compose a the songs which would make up their next recording.
Small Kids, Big Guns (2001-2002)Edit
In Summer of 2001, Sprout reunited with engineer Chris Fasulo to record at Five Town College six new songs and a new recording of "Straight to the Core". During the recording process, Sprout was asked to be a part of the 2001 Vans Warped Tour by performing on a side-stage. This capped off one of the most successsful years for Sprout and gave the band big momentum prior to the next CD release. As recording concluded, the new EP was christened with the name "Small Kids, Big Guns". The songs were a much more defined brand of rock than the Victim of the Green recording. The pre-release track "Lifecycle" began to get heavy play on local radio stations and even made its way onto the national stage by being featured on the indie-rock television show "Farmclub" and making its way through Clearchannel radio station indie rock playlists. Due to this early buzz, Sprout was asked to headline a local rock lineup at the Vanderbilt in Plainview. Sprout pushed up the release of the EP to this show date and the "Small Kids, Big Guns" CD was released to over 500 fans in attendance that February. The remainder of 2002 featured Sprout riding the success of this EP and being asked to open for many national acts (Andrew WK, Bowling For Soup, Goldfinger, Skate & Surf Festival and a main stage performance at This Island Earth Festival). The year culminated with a hugely successful performance at a Halloween show performing as Guns 'N' Roses. While promoting the EP, the band found a bit of time to begin writing new material.
Delay the Inevitable (2003)Edit
As 2003 began, Jordan Plosky decided to leave the band. The band found drummer Chris Lorenz after many auditions. The band had new material but began to suffer the side effects of many of Long Islands larger venues becoming "pay to play" venues. Especially during the winter and spring as the bands main audience was college age and unable to attend many shows while school was in session. Once the band had enough material for a new release, the band prepared to head into the studio for recording in the late spring. Days before recording was about to begin, lead singer and founding member Jay Tea decided to leave the band to pursue touring with the band Arrogant Sons of Bitches in which he was a keyboard player. Despite this blow, the 3 remaining members decided to go on with the recording even without having a vocalist at the current time. The band auditioned singers during the recording process eventually deciding on Tony Silva (ex Norma's Lemon Stand). The recording labored over many months and did not see release for even longer due to the band being low on funds. It was eventually released in the spring. As shows dwindled, a severe spilt between the fans also occurred with those not ready to accept the new sound of a new lead singer. In the summer of 2003, bassist George McRedmond decided to leave the band to join Glen Cove based band HyJinX (Stealing Jane). Following George's departure, the band decided to call it quits.
Original singer Jay Tea Turret continued to play keyboards in the Arrogant Sons of Bitches until their eventual hiatus. He also has played many shows and done recordings as a solo artist. He has collaborated with many artists in the punk and ska scenes. Most frequently with Chris DeMakes of Less Than Jake on the "Ska Goes Solo" tours. He became the new lead singer/keyboardist of Hello Nurse in 2010 and wrote and recorded on the EP "Pharmagicians". He played drums in 2011 for NYC punk band Uncontrolled (later renamed Scarboro). He fronts the cover band Me Next and the Gimme Mores and currently is a member of Nix86.
Jordan Plosky went on to become a session drummer for many major label national acts. He has performed on tour for Everclear, Perry Farrell, Ryan Cabrera, Miley Cyrus and Big Time Rush to name a few.
George McRedmond went on to play bass for four years in HyJinX who eventually became Stealing Jane from 2003-2007. He currently plays in Long Island based cover band Rich Mahogany, while still doing occasional session work.
"DJ Missing Link" Josh Link became a very successful NYC DJ until his unfortunate and untimely death in 2009.
Tony Silva went on to be the vocalist in NY rockabilly band the Devils Spade.
J.T. Turret - Vocals / Keyboards (1997 - 2003)
Lee Kaufman - Guitar / Vocals (1997-2003)
Dave Pollack- Bass (1997-1998)
Ariel Nelson - Drums (1997-1998)
Matt Hollander- Vocals / Trumpet (1998-2000)
Dave Bruno- Bass (1998)
Jordan Plosky- Drums (1999 - 2002)
Josh Link - Turntables (1999-2000)
George McRedmond - Bass / Vocals (1999-2003)
Chris Lorenz - Drums (2002-2003)
Tony Silva - Vocals (2003)