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Biography

"Brad had an addictive personality. Before he was addicted to heroin, he was addicted to girls; it was a different girl every night. I was afraid he was going to get AIDS"--Eric Wilson

If Sublime traced it's beginnings back, they'd start in 1986, in Long Beach, CA's punk scene. In 1990, Brad, Eric and Bud self-released a tape called 'Jah Won't Pay the Bills and Sublime began to emerge from Long Beach's party circuit. After the1992 release of 40 oz. to Freedom, and selling 30,000 copies of it from the trunk of their car, the band turned into a tidal wave of local support. A second CD, two years later was a less compelling release. Robbin' The Hood was less popular due in part to Brad's increasing involvement with heroin, but it hardly prevented Sublime from expanding their influence. Later in 1994, Sublime came to the attention of Gasoline Alley, a MCA subsidiary and signed with them. In January, 1995 a Los Angeles radio station added Date Rape from 40 oz. to its play list. The song became the most requested track for the next 16 weeks.

Until Nowell's death, the legend of Sublime continued to grow, due to their alcohol inspired antics on the road. In 1995, they were kicked off the Warped Tour for bad behavior and earned a reputation for never letting an insult pass unanswered. Eric Wilson recalls that, "Two years ago, we played with 311 in Santa Barbara and they acted really snotty because they had a big tour bus and we didn't. So after sound check, when they had their sampler on the stage, Brad deleted all their samples before the show. I don't know how they played the show; we didn't stick around to find out."

 

 

Bradley James Nowell
February 22 1968-May 25 1996