Published Jun 30, 2010In 1968, one of the first true successes in outsider music was born when the Wiggins sisters, with some help from their dad, formed the Shaggs. The notoriously out-of-tune group released their Philosophy of the World album in 1969, and quickly reached cult status with everyone from Frank Zappa to Kurt Cobain. We're happy to report that their legacy continues with The Shaggs: Philosophy of the World, a new musical set to drop in 2011.
Speaking with the New York Times [via The Daily Swarm], musical writer Gunnar Madsen described his reactions when he first heard the Shaggs. "I listened to that, and I found it profoundly depressing," he recalled. "Other people find a simple joy in it, but for me I just heard how they were forced to do this...I can hear where they're just struggling to find something out of the chaos which is music."
For parts of the musical, Madsen reveals that he attempted to answer the question of what the Shaggs had hoped to sound like without losing the "amazing cacophony" of their recorded output. The result is a series of compositions that "sounds kind of like Stravinsky meets David Byrne meets I don't know."
The Shaggs: Philosophy of the World will hit New York's Playwrights Horizon in the spring of 2011. It will be directed by John Langs.