Do You Remember Frogpond?
Frogpond formed in Warrensburg, Missouri in the musically rich year that was 1994. Heidi Phillps possessed a passion for music at an early age. She gravitated towards a drum kit and later the guitar. Heidi soon recruited good friends, Megan Hamilton and Justine Volpe party. The threesome later welcomed seasoned guitarist, Kristie Stremel. Their early musical ethos was built around their close friendship rather than a vast array of musical skills. Their home base, the ‘Frogpond House’ became a welcomed haven for touring bands such Pansy Division and Baboon.
Soon Frogpond would go on to perform in front of an increasingly growing fan base. They would go on to open for big name acts such as The Toadies, Everclear and Letters To Cleo. The band hit a major high point when they found an admirer in R.E.M.’s Mike Mills. While in town on the “Monster” tour Mike attended a show. He was enamored with the ladies and invited them to partake in R.E.M.’s tour wrap party.
Frogpond would go on to garner a deal with TriStar records. “Count to Ten”, their debut album was released in 1996 with Everclear’s Art Alexakis serving as producer. The follow up album Safe Ride Home would usher in a lineup change and instrumental experimentation. Frogpond continued to tour and elevate their rabid fan base. Ultimately the trio would disband in 2000. Heidi rebounded with solo acoustic gigs and creation of the indie rock outfit, Abileen. Kristie started playing with the new group Exit 159. She would become an activist for gay rights and attend classes at the University of Kansas.
In this writers humble opinion Frogpond should have been in the ranks of other fantastic alternative rockers such as Throwing Muses and Veruca Salt. I’m not for sure what might have caused the demise of this possible alt-rock titan. Perhaps the stress and pressure of legalities coupled with subtle stardom was enough to cripple the future of this “band” of sister-like friends. Whether you haven’t listened to them in awhile or have yet to discover their awesome sound. I ask this of you, what are you waiting for? “Hop to it”!