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Exotic Birds

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Cleveland, United States (1983 – 1994)

The Exotic Birds was a band which formed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1983. They are best known for their song “Everything is Different Now” and their cover of Badfinger’s “Day After Day”. The band’s keyboardist, Trent Reznor, later became famous as the leader of Nine Inch Nails

The Exotic Birds were formed in 1983 by three Cleveland Institute of Music percussion students, Andy Kubiszewski, Tom Freer, and Tim Adams. They wrote their own music, and were described as synth pop and dance. They achieved mainly local success, but appeared as an opening band for Culture Club, Eurythmics, and Information Society.

The band’s first single, “Dance the Night Away,” was backed with an earlier recording, “Who Knows Why,” by Kubiszewski and Nick Capetanakis (who performed with Kubiszewski in a prior group.) The order of the songs was accidentally flipped on the record, so the older song appeared as the A side. “Who Knows Why” received moderate local radio play and became a surprise hit in Japan. The band eventually grew to five members. Adams left to do orchestral work, but Mark Best and Frank Vale signed on.

Then, by 1985, Trent Reznor (who later formed Nine Inch Nails) joined the band on keyboards, programming and backing vocals. Shortly after that, Freer departed the band for the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra and was replaced by Reznor’s roommate, Chris Vrenna, who would also later join Reznor in Nine Inch Nails. Still, this was clearly Kubiszewski’s band as neither Reznor nor Vrenna wrote any of the songs. By 1988, the band had broken up.

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