MCIS to me was an absolute escape. An escape from middle school, when my angst was in high gear and getting bullied was the norm. If I could come home and throw these albums on and write poetry or draw, it took me out of reality, even if briefly, but that was bliss. These songs still carry me away to that time, and while some of those memories are harsh, it was a time of tremendous growth, and for that I am forever thankful.
March 2020. The UK has gone into lockdown and claustrophobia is setting in.
I’m allowed out only for essential shopping, to walk my 11 month old daughter to sleep, and to run late at night. The weather is unseasonably warm, and I use this time to listen to artists and albums I have wanted to revisit but never found the time.
I listen to all of Depeche Mode’s albums in the sun, and fall back in love with my favourite Smashing Pumpkins album Adore.
I decide to run to Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, an album I had wrongly labelled as inconsistent in my impatient adolescent mind. I fall in love with its harshness and delicacy. Night after night I repeat this, and my runs get longer as I want to hear more.
MCATIS becomes my clear favourite SP album. I also fall deeply for all the albums. Discovering new gems day by day.
Then when I thought I’d heard it all, Ogilala blew me away, and was a rare album to be universally liked by all in the house.
In conclusion, I want to thank SP for MCIS, and for the journey it has taken me on in these uncertain times.
In love since 1995
I remember going to a record store near my high school but couldn’t afford the CD,still remember the sorrow of having to put it back on the shelf ,did buy it after some time and some saving up and fell in love with it’s magic. Listened to it about a milion times since then and today I love it even more. Masterpiece.Has made my life so much better.In love since 1995.
Erna Schou Klemensker, Denmark, DK
My son was a huge SP fan since he was just a young kid… sadly we lost him in a car accident 7 years ago 😢 31 years old, newly wedded and a father of twin girls at two years old. We had “Bullit with Butterfly wings”. 4 years ago I got married to my loved one ❤️ I walked up the Aisle to “Mellon collie and the Infinite Sadness” ❤️ and it felt like my son was at the wedding to ❤️ and I too has become a huge SP fan 😍
The Empty Bodies
My bandmates and I have been huge Smashing Pumpkins fans since we were kids (we are all in our late 30’s now and nothing has changed), so when we came to the point when we needed a band name, we decided on naming our band The Empty Bodies, which is obviously a lyric from the song Bodies from Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness because that is collectively probably our favourite SP song. I included a picture of the album artwork from our second full length album which we released in July of 2019. Thanks for the opportunity to tell our Mellon Collie story and I’ll still be listening to Mellon Collie 25 years from now!
Wait There’s More?!
When the album came out my oldest brother made a cassette tape that had half the songs. It was a selection of songs from both CDs. I was around 11 and knew nothing about the band, but ended up with the tape and listened to it nonstop. I was obsessed with it for a long time. Eventually I learned it was a double album and discovered the other half of the songs. It was a miracle to me! So much more amazing music at such a pivotal time in my life. It was a gift to discover something I loved so much was only half of a whole album. I got to fall in love with the album all over again even more!
My first concert
I grew up in rural Southern Illinois in a town of less than 200 people. I saved my babysitting money of $2 an hour to buy the album. It changed my life. The first time I heard Muzzle, I knew I was meant for more than conservative farm life.
My cousin’s parents drove us over an hour to see The Pumpkins when they toured for the album. It was my first concert, I was a freshman in high school and I can close my eyes now and see it all. I remember the cover of Norwegian Wood, and thinking it was the best night of my life.
This album shaped so much of my adolescents. I’ve never left it and listen to it often. I remember the struggles of being a teen in a small town longing for more and realizing that it was out there. I got out, saw the world and let it change and shape me. I no longer fear I’m ordinary, I came of age with this album in my ears I’m extraordinary.
Poor college student
I loved the Pumpkins since I was a college student and Gish was released. I saw The Pumpkins at the Cleveland Agora theater right before Siamese Dream was released. A few years later Melancholy was released right around when I started dating my future husband. He had never heard of The Pumpkins and I told them about the amazing artists that make up the band. A day later he bought me the Melancholy album, I knew then he was the one! We’ve now been married for over twenty two years and have been to several Pumpkins and WPC concerts together. We played Landslide as our couples dance at our wedding. We can’t wait for future concerts to resume!
Bonding through MCIS
I would sneak into my Brother’s room whenever he’d go out to raid his “cool stuff.” Comics, CDs, videogames, anything he had was fascinating to me. I found MCIS, and I loved it. I asked if we could listen to the “CD with the lady on it” once he got home. I’ll always cherish listening to it with him.
Travelling 1995 world trip
25 years ago Myself and my now wife went travelling around the world for a year. Despite limited funds music was our must have and this album was bought in Thailand and was played relentlessly throughout the trip. It was OUR album and remains OUR album to this day. The trip was topped off In Brisbane Australia when we saw SP live and then to top it all when in Sydney at our local pub Billy Corgan dropped in to listen to some live Aussie music. We couldn’t believe it but I plucked up the courage to say hello sadly no mobile phones or cameras were available then so all just memories now but what a year, what an album and what a band👍
Maria Teresa Florence, it, IT
MCIS is me. MCSI is all i’ve felt and loved and hated for so long. Today, MCIS is the real me.
My First Love
Ash Rae Belleville, IL, US
When I was a teenager, I was into SO many types of music: classic rock, 80’s pop, alternative, you name it, I was all over the place because I was pulling inspiration from all friends and family. Smashing Pumpkins was the FIRST band I found all by myself! My first real love. MTV was on in the background of my solo art night in my bedroom (how I spent many a night) and I heard Tonight, Tonight. Interested in the music, I looked up to see Billy and I was hooked! Hot lead singer, incredible music, WOW! Perfection. I love you guys! The image is not MCIS, but it is myself and my late father in front of my Machina poster and it’s pure happiness.
No Swears Allowed
Vanessa Hillsboro, OR, US
For my 8th birthday I got MCIS tapes and a yellow walkman, it was hands down the best gift ever! I would listen to it all the time, especially on the bus to school & field trips. At some point my mom noticed a few swear words in the lyrics & title of songs (An Ode to No One for example) so she used a black sharpie to remove them from the tape inserts that had all the lyrics on them. I was so upset (looking back, I get it). I must have been watching Antiques Road Show or something because I kept telling her she had “Ruined the value!” I just think it’s funny to picture an 8-year-old little girl fuming about the value of her tapes going down, haha. After the fact, I did notice a few swears she missed blacking out and that was my little secret for the longest time.
I was 15. I was on a boy scout trip in Islamorada, Fl. I was in a tent on Big Munson island. I had borrowed MCIS from a friend, listening to it on my discman. Never before had I heard such passion, such yearning. I felt like Billy was singing my story, directly to me. I became a lifelong fan from then onward. I’m 42 now, and to this day it’s still my favorite album of all time.
Richard Knoxville, TN, US
I first learned of the Pumpkins through the “Tonight Tonight” video. My Dad bought me the guitar tab book for MCIS and its part of what made me want to play guitar! Always wanted to see SP live but I was too young.
Wow, 25 years ago I was 18. Time passes and memories remain. I’m glad. MCIS could be the soundtrack of my life. Many shared, happy and sad moments.
I recorded k7 tapes with my favorite songs, one with happy songs, the other with sad ones. At the time, my best friend went to London to study, and asked me to take k7 tapes with him. 26 years ago, communication was precarious and calling was very expensive (I live in Brazil), or I wrote a letter or faxed to his school. After a few months he sends me a fax saying that he was terrible, super sad and that the k7 tape was not helping at all. I thought it was strange that he was torturing himself listening to only the sad songs and I asked him why he only listened to the sad ones, if the happy ones were beautiful and maybe it made him feel good. He replied weeks later saying that he did not know that the other tape was happy, he thought that the entire album was of melancholy and sad songs, that he only listened to the sad ones because he had # 1 written. And that the happy songs were good for him, he felt good and remembered me whenever I listened to any SP song. When he came back he brought me an SP shirt. The famous black T-shirt with a silver heart. Our favorite song is 1979 and he still lives in London, he is still my best friend and he still listens to SP and remembers our youth S2
MCIS Literally Saved My Life and Maybe Many Others
I was a junior in high school in 2018-19. I was very lonely and I was suicidal, and was even breaching into thoughts of shooting up my school. Then me and my dad were talking about music on the car ride to my school, and he mentioned Mellen Collie. I looked it up on youtube at lunch that day and I was captivated, I listened to the while album constantly especially dring those lonely lunch hours where I had no one to hang out with or talk to. I would just walk around town on my lunch blaring MCIS in my ear buds. This album prevented my sucicde and even a possible mass murder. It got me through the loneliness.
Artwork for my birthday
Renee Jackson, mo, US
In 1996, my brother drew this for me because he knew we had no money for a cake or presents. He knew I was obsessed with mellon, so he spent a week drawing it for me. Then in 2005, I had a house fire. I saved my daughter and this drawing, but lost everything else. That’s how much the record has meant to me, it saved my life!
Every dog has its day.
Fris Green Bay, US
Every grunge album that’s good has everything to do with a dog. Alice in Chains Dirt and the dog on self titled are big super unknowns that I wrote for the music industry as a kid. Mellon Collie is about a dog. Amazing how much time has gone by like we dodged a bullet with butterfly wings. Peace. I hope we are making it to Heaven safely during the pandemic. The world is a vampire set to drain, secret destroyer, lifts us up to the flames. Perfect song for todays situations. I don’t mean that we are God’s, we’re just happy to have a belief in those around us. I hope the Church a great holidays and keep your faith blessed among us as we sing rock n roll through the times we have left. Have a good rest The Smashing Pumpkins Linkin Park Soundgarden Alice in Chains Nirvana and way more bands than we can count. Goodbye Goodbye Goodbye. See you up the road. TP.
Love is Suicide
October 2016… Four years ago A few months after an ex of mine broke up with me for someone else I was in my room crying and upset that I couldn’t find another boyfriend. At the time I felt alone and I was also at a very low point in my life. I was depressed, hated my job and most of my coworkers cuz they bullied me, had no real friends around me just drinking buddies, drinking heavily to try to escape my misery…. one night I got really drunk while listening to Mellon Collie on vinyl and just decided to take my Russian red Mac lipstick and write “love is suicide” on the mirror…….
I kept that on my mirror until I met my current boyfriend two months later who I am still with till this day. I no longer think love is suicide and relate more with “stand inside your love” these days 🙂
Yeah I know this isn’t a typical “this album saved my life”’post but I thought I would share it anyways with a picture from that night.
Tower Records Long Island
One of the most exciting nights of my youth. Not only was a new SP album coming out but a double album. Me and my friends drove to the Tower Records in Carle Place and literally camped out at Midnight to get in line just to have something we knew would be special. Was such an amazing feeling to hold something in your hand with anticipation of what it would sound like. And from track 1 on it was pure magic. So many memories were built around it. And still are to this day.
Tale of a hillbilly fan.
I was around 12, a kid living in the Appalachian mountains of Eastern Kentucky. My father had just been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and we were very much poor. It was an exceedingly depressing time in my life, and I remember seeing “Bullet with Butterfly Wings” on TV. I didn’t really listen to music at all during that time in my life, as all that you would hear around these parts is country music. So SP introduced me to a music I actually liked. I remember seeing the double disc in Walmart, and sweating bullets on whether I should spend the hard saved money I had from my birthday on it. It was one of the first major purchases I’ve made in my life, as at the time, that was a fair bit of money for me. I purchased Melon Collie, and listened to it almost daily. It brought me through the passing of my father, and the whirlwind of horrible things that happened thereafter. To this day, I still listen to the album. It’s timeless, and many of the memories I associate with it, both good and bad, are still there. It was a soundtrack for a tough time in my life, but one I will forever cherish.
The day I met SP and MCIS
Geoff White Peterborough, GB
I was a late starter in music terms and only heard ‘Tonight, Tonight’ when i was a roadie for a mate’s cover band. He lent me MCIS and that was it. i collected and have loved all the work and it just never gets old. I love ‘Disarm’ and ‘Bullet’ and the latest album shows the edge has not been lost. I have watched Billy on the Tiny Desk session. Fucking awesome. Long live the Smashing Pumpkins – my child has been enlightened and my only regret is that I didn’t meet SP earlier in my life.
4th Grade Favorites
Here’s an excerpt from my 4th grade (!) autograph book, where I scrawled in “Bodies” as my favorite song of the year. No doubt the influence of my older brother, who was (and remains) a diehard Pumpkins fan. Little did I know what a monumental impact MCIS would have on my life and trajectory into music.
Mellon collie and the infinite mourning
I discovered this album in a charity shop where my aunt lives. Got it for €1. Quite a steal to be honest. At the time, it was just the day after my grandmother’s funeral which was the first time I have experienced mourning a loss. I felt odd and cold. When I bought it, I played it the minute I got home. I fell in love. Some of the most beautiful and well crafted songs I had ever heard. This album really helped me cope with the loss of a loved one. I’m not a seasoned veteran like some of the other Mellon collie fans but it really showed me that the world was still here for me. Thank you, mellon collie!!
Music to call my own
Jarrod Rogue River Oregon, US
I was a homeschooled kid and when I turned 16 I started going to a local community college and my mom gave me a few bucks for lunch and I saved it to buy Mellon Collie and the infinite sadness. I had head a few songs on the radio and had fell in love with it. I remember buying it at a Fred Myers store and as I unwrapped the CDs the smell was perfect. To this day I still sometimes open the case just to smell the booklet again. Thank you
Waited long enough
I have loved MCIS since I was a teenager. That album played the soundtrack of all of my teen years. I never got to see SP in concert and then as an adult they can to Arkansas and I cried hearing every song from MCIS that I never thought I would get to hear live. I felt whole, happy, and complete for the first time in so long.
Ted Mauldin, SC, US
My very first concert was on the MCIS tour. I had just turned 16. That night changed my life forever. Thanks and much love SP!
El arte que más me impactó en la vida
Escribo esto en español porque mi inglés es malo. La portada del disco es mi mayor influencia ya que me dedico a la ilustración. Recuerdo que la vi cuando era pequeña y dije -Yo quiero hacer eso-. Ahora hago poster e ilustraciones para bandas de rock. Son mi banda favorita y con mayor influencia en toda la vida. Los amo <3
Mid to Late
90’s – I wasn’t an MTV Head growing up, but one day I came across the channel
and a music video unlike any other presented itself. It was ‘Tonight
Tonight’. The singer’s voice was . . . different. And I don’t mean
in a bad way. The sounds of the music felt oddly dreamy: rock music with a
strings section and marching-style drumming that motored the song’s
engine. I LOVED IT. And I wanted more.
I told my
cousin, who was a Pumpkins fan and had the CD album, and asked him to record it
onto a tape for me. He did and I WORE THAT TAPE OUT. The Smashing
Pumpkins had become one of my favorite bands.
Soon after, I spent
my own money and BOUGHT Mellon Collie (this was a big deal; not yet a teen and
here is my first major music purchase). I
then collected Siamese Dream, Gish, and Pisces Iscariot.
In becoming a
guitarist, Smashing Pumpkins’ music became even MORE crucial as it was through
learning their songs on guitar that I really began to understand how music
worked. I suppose they call that music
theory. At various times throughout life,
I’ve learned to play every song from Mellon
In 2014, I
performed a cover of ‘By Starlight’ at a friend’s wedding reception. I then recorded the cover song for said
friend – https://zevin.bandcamp.com/track/by-starlight-the-smashing-pumpkins-cover
To this day, I’ve
never stopped being a fan of The Smashing Pumpkins and Mellon Collie and The Infinite Sadness remains one of my Top Five favorite
albums of all-time album in my vast collection of music.