Juliana Hatfield’s January 18 show at The Basement East in Nashville included a Blake Babies reunion with former band members Freda Love Smith and John Strohm. The show was the third stop on Hatfield’s current tour, which began January 16 at SPACE in Chicago and ends February 14 at the Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn.
It was also one of the few shows on the tour that included opener Sunshine Boys, whose lineup features drummer Freda Love Smith. Nashville is now home to Blake Babies’ third founding member, John Strohm, who currently serves as president of Rounder Records. The show served as a perfect storm to literally get the band back together, if only for a couple of songs.
The reunited band first played “Out There” from their 1990 album Sunburn. AllMusic reviewed Sunburn as “the last great college rock album.”
They followed that up with “From Here to Burma” from 1989’s Earwig.
Hatfield, Smith and Strohm formed Blake Babies in 1986. They recorded four albums and performed regularly until breaking up in 1991, before reuniting in 1999, touring sporadically and releasing a fifth studio album in 2001 before once again going their separate musical ways. The brief Nashville set was their first performance together since 2016.