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Dean Wareham Posts Luna Rarities To Help Ailing A&R Legend Terry Tolkin

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Dean Wareham of Luna has posted a series of Luna rarities to help raise money for Terry Tolkin.

Tolkin, who’s responsible for bringing Luna over to Elektra when he was the label’s Vice President of A&R (1992-1996), is now living in Louisiana and is critically ill.

On his Facebook page, Wareham writes: “I have put these early Luna demos up on Bandcamp, with all profits going to pay the medical and pharmaceutical bills of former A&R man Terry Tolkin, who signed Luna (and Stereolab too) to Elektra in 1992.”

Tolkin is a legendary figure in alternative music.

In fact, many credit him for coining the term.

Way back in 1979 when he was working as a reviewer for Rockpool–which was a music industry publication along the lines of CMJ–Tolkin created the phrase “alternative music.” Not only that, he conceived and curated the compilation album The Bridge: A Tribute To Neil Young, which boasted Young covers by everyone from The Pixies, The Flaming Lips and Soul Asylum, whose take on “Barstool Blues” prompted Stereo Embers’ Matt Sloan to declare it, “one of the greatest covers of all time.”

 80% of the album’s profits went directly to The Bridge School, the organization aiding children with Cerebral Palsy, run by Young himself and his wife Peggi. Rolling Stone declared the album was “one of the best conceived and executed” tribute albums ever.

Tolkin, who also had booked bands for CBGB’s as well as Danceteria, signed The Butthole Surfers and the Virgin Prunes to deals while working for Touch & Go Records in the ’80s and he also ran the indie label No. 6 Records.

His signings to Elektra include Luna, Stereolab, Nada Surf and the Afghan Whigs.

Wareham’s bandcamp page explains the derivation of the posted songs: “These are demo tracks from the period after Galaxie 500 broke up, recorded at Wharton Tiers’ Fun City Studios in New York City, featuring Dean Wareham accompanied by drummer Jimy Chambers (Mercury Rev) and, on “I Can’t Wait” by Hamish Kilgour of the Clean. Later versions of the songs appear on Luna’s Lunapark album. Luna (at this early stage Dean Wareham) was signed to Elektra by A&R man Terry Tolkin who had previously worked at Rough Trade, Touch & Go and Caroline Records. Terry now lives in New Orleans and is gravely ill. He is fighting a rare and aggressive virus that has his doctors perplexed, and facing huge medical bills for hospital visits, thrice-weekly dialysis and prescription drug co-pays.”

Wareham’s bandcamp page goes on to say: “All profits from the sale of this digital EP on Bandcamp are being sent directly to Terry to help pay his bills. Price is $7 but you are free to donate more.. .”

Purchases can be made here: