Billy Corgan Reveals ‘Singles’ Soundtrack Slight Over Smashing Pumpkins’ ‘Drown’
Smashing Pumpkins' "Drown" and Alice in Chains' "Would?" are both classic songs that garnered attention on the soundtrack to the 1992 Cameron Crowe film Singles, but according to Billy Corgan, the success of "Drown" was stymied by the label behind the soundtrack due to their pushing of Alice in Chains' hit.
According to Alternative Nation, Corgan revealed the slight during a VIP Q&A session in Atlanta. He recalled, "Although that was a great opportunity for us at the time, it codified that somehow we were part of something we weren't a part of." He added, "We put the song 'Drown' … on there. The soundtrack was on I believe Epic or Sony. Well, they were pushing Alice in Chains' song 'Would?,' which is a classic. It's a great song. They were pushing that, but 'Drown' actually started to get traction at radio. It was actually our first song that had momentum at radio, and Epic killed the song because they didn't want it to take away from [Alice in Chains]."
The singer continued, "That's classic record company. You would think, 'Hey, you've got this soundtrack. You've got two songs working radio, you're going to sell more soundtracks.' They killed our single to make sure that it wouldn’t hurt the Alice in Chains thing."
Corgan holds no ill will toward Alice in Chains, adding, "I can't complain, because I love Alice in Chains and I'm friends with Jerry [Cantrell], and it's all good, but what I'm saying is that's the kind of stuff nobody ever hears about -- where actually, in the old record business, and they still do it, you'll kill something where it makes no sense. Why would you kill something that it is working and working with the public? So that song actually didn't become as big as it would have become because the record company that held the copyright killed it."
The singer says he did get a bit of revenge years later when the label approached him for the 20-year reissue of the soundtrack. "They asked for their demo, and I told them to f--k off. Slight revenge. I took money out of my own pocket, but that's the way it goes."
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