Last night I discovered a wonderful new local band, the Sugarfree All-Stars. (a two-piece band consisting of an organ and a drummer that plays lots of happy, quirky music as well as the occasional Neil Diamond cover)

But this discovery made me sad, as I thought about all of the wonderful bands that have disbanded and drifted off into the ether. So this post is going to talk about one of them and provide some links to their music that has been archived at different websites.

In future posts, I’ll talk about other dearly departed bands.


This first band I came to love during my days of traveling to the Cornerstone Festival in Bushnell, Illinois. I went on behalf of Exitzine (a gloriously fun project done by my friends and I back in the day) and had a blast. Cornerstone was a weird place, a mix of semi-radical politics, evangelical theology, and good music. The festival itself was ran by Jesus People USA (JPUSA), a commune in Chicago with its roots in the Jesus-hippy movements of the 1960’s.

Well besides the festival, JPUSA also had a record label and several bands. And one of those bands was Ballydowse, a glorious Celtic/anarchist/Christian/oi/punk band.

Ballydowse playing at Cornerstone 2002
Ballydowse playing at Cornerstone 2002

Also worth mentioning is that the band gets its name from the fictional village of Ballydowse, from the movie War of the Buttons (if you know the movie, you know how cool this is)

Here are some links worth sharing about them…