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|Birth name||Seth Edward Putnam|
|Born||May 15, 1968|
Newton, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Died||June 11, 2011 (aged 43)|
Newton, Massachusetts, U.S.
Seth Edward Putnam (May 15, 1968 – June 11, 2011) was an American musician who was the founder, vocalist and occasional guitarist of grindcore band Anal Cunt. He was known for his high-pitched screamed vocals and lyrics that either shock, offend, or invoke morbid humor. Throughout his career, Putnam was also involved in numerous side projects.
Putnam was born on May 15, 1968, in Newton, Massachusetts to father Edward R. Putnam and mother Barbara Ann Donohue. He is of English and Irish descent. His parents are divorced. Seth was married to his first wife, Alison Dunn, from December 1998 through June 2001. He married Julie, his second wife, on May 17, 2008. From 1986 to 1988, Putnam played bass in the thrash metal band Executioner.
Despite his shock humor and turbulent lifestyle, Putnam was often described by fans and peers as a warm, intelligent, and sensitive person. Putnam saw himself as a comedian and used music as an outlet.
In school, classmates who knew Putnam described him as intelligent and stern, but unmotivated, apathetic and often an underwhelming student. Putnam skipped a grade in school and became a very bright student, tutoring his classmates. In his own words, Putnam often blamed brutal fights with Catholic school nuns for helping to shape his cynical personality. When he reached high school, he had lost interest in excelling in education or academics, becoming more of a slacker and underachiever. By the time he had graduated school, Putnam had left the Catholic religion in which he was raised. After graduation, Putnam showed no interest in attending college or university.
The 2018 grindcore documentary Slave to the Grind explores Putnam in detail, with his peers expressing the duality of his nature: former bandmates Tim Morse and Scott Hull describe Putnam often being personable and relaxed, but Hull also notes that he'd often get arrested causing trouble on the street. Discordance Axis singer Jon Chang notes that he was really close to Putnam for years, but describes him as a "really disturbed guy" and a "backstabbing piece of shit at the end of his life". Chang also recounted an incident after a show when Putnam introduced his mother to Chang, he remarked that they had met earlier when he pulled Putnam's mother out from the show's moshpit, causing Putnam to become aggressive and threaten Chang, much to the confusion of everyone present. Putnam was also good friends with Pantera frontman Philip Anselmo. Anselmo used to get Anal Cunt to open for Pantera whenever they went through Boston. Anal Cunt opened for Pantera three times. There is also footage of Putnam singing "Suicide Note Part II" with Anselmo at a show in 1998.
On October 12, 2004, Putnam was hospitalized after ingesting a cocktail of crack cocaine, alcohol, heroin, and two months' worth of Ambien sleeping pills. It has been reported that he spent the previous day contemplating suicide, though exact circumstances surrounding the drug overdose are vague.
Anal Cunt's 1997 album I Like It When You Die contained the track "You're in a Coma". Putnam's reaction to the resulting irony of being in a coma was published in the Boston Phoenix: "Actually, it turned out it was just as gay as the song I wrote nine years ago – being in a coma was just as fuckin' stupid as I wrote it was." Anal Cunt kept performing the song during live shows after the coma, with Putnam sharing anecdotes with the audience before the song.
Prior to his coma in 2004, Putnam overdosed on heroin in 1998. In a 2007 interview, he said: "In 1998 I was dead for 10 minutes from a heroin overdose. The EMT's used that stuff to revive people and it didn't work. They tried it a second time for the hell of it and it worked. All I remember was waking up in my kitchen having no idea where I was. On the way to the hospital, the EMT told me I was probably going to have brain damage the rest of my life. By the time I got to the hospital I was completely back to normal though. I didn't see any 'mystic visions' or anything that time either."
There was friction between Putnam and Six Feet Under vocalist Chris Barnes. According to Putnam's defunct website, Putnam and Josh Martin (Anal Cunt guitarist) went to a Six Feet Under show to hand out fliers looking for a drummer, Putnam eventually heckled Barnes during a Six Feet Under set, leading to an altercation between the three, ending with Six Feet Under's roadies ganging up on Putnam and Martin grabbing Barnes' wrists before Barnes fled to his tour bus and hid there Putnam released the song "Chris Barnes Is a Pussy" as retaliation to the incident. According to Putnam in an interview with Capital Chaos TV several years later, Six Feet Under went out of their way to avoid playing in the same city as Anal Cunt several years after the incident. Putnam stated "I guess he (Chris Barnes) is still afraid of me". Despite the feud, Putnam eventually became a fan of Six Feet Under and stated that "Murdered in the Basement" was his favorite song by Six Feet Under. Martin also said that Putnam saw Cannibal Corpse live on their Eaten Back To Life tour.
Anal Cunt were playing at the second New England Metal and Hardcore Festival in 2000. The Misfits headlined the big stage, Anal Cunt headlined the second stage and Hatebreed headlined the Commercial Street Cafe, the Hatebreed show got shut down due to issues with the sound system and they were moved to Anal Cunt's stage and ended up playing before them. The band that played before Anal Cunt had already finished their set and the announcer knowing that all the people who showed up were expecting Anal Cunt to play said that Hatebreed were going to play first. They were eventually booed by Anal Cunt fans. According to Josh Martin, Jamey Jasta got angry and called the crowd a bunch of "washed up metalheads", Putnam also said on his website that Jasta also said that Hatebreed were more popular and sold more records than Anal Cunt, Putnam and Martin were at the bar next door not knowing what was going on. They came back when Hatebreed finished their set and Putnam was yelled at by Jasta, Jasta or one of his friends pushed Putnam and at least 20 people formed a circle and started punching the ground (thinking they are beating up Putnam). Martin who owned a VHS tape of the fight that ended up getting lost said that Putnam was standing 20 feet away watching and eating popcorn (Putnam said that he had his arms folded instead). The promoter screwed the band over and wouldn't pay them, the cops eventually came and Putnam wised off to one of them, he was eventually arrested and the cops opened the door to leave the building with his head. Alison Dunn who was his wife at the time asked the cops why they were arresting Putnam and they arrested her too. They were both eventually bailed out and nothing else happened between those two bands since. Putnam also said on his website that the bouncer at the door would not let him into the club unless he was given a free CD. Putnam denied giving him one and the bouncer said that every other band did it and gave Putnam a mean look in an attempt to scare him. Putnam told the guy in charge of the club what happened and he was eventually let back in. On April 16, 2003. Putnam updated his website saying that a friend of his was on Superjoint Ritual's tour bus with the members of Hatebreed who were bragging about beating Putnam up and how they would do it again if they saw him, Putnam eventually showed up on the bus and neither him or Hatebreed said anything to one another due to Putnam forgetting what they looked like. He eventually got called into the back of the tour bus, Hatebreed still sat in the front and eventually left.
In February 2021, Jamey Jasta interviewed Jimmy Bower from Eyehategod on his podcast "The Jasta Show". Jasta mentioned a story where Putnam requested a mop to make sure the stage was clean because people were skating on it and eventually ended up attacking the audience with it instead. He also said he used to distro Anal Cunt's albums and book their shows. Bower told stories of Putnam using a fire extinguisher on stage and getting foam all over Eyehategod's gear, letting air out of the tires on someone's bike chained to a pole, and spending his entire night calling people long distance from the gas station he used to work at. Bower used to have a voice message from Putnam of him saying "Hi friend, how are you doing friend?".
Jasta would also interview Eyehategod vocalist Mike Williams. Williams, who knew Putnam since 1988, said that Putnam was a normal guy off-stage and very quiet and soft-spoken. Williams also said that he used to call him long distance from the Chevron gas station that he worked at, so that all his calls would be charged to Chevron. Jasta said that Putnam used to call his old landline and trade records with him.
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The idea of the band came up when Putnam and Larry Lifeless (Kilslug vocalist) were drunk one night watching Jerry Springer and Larry said "That guy looks like he should be in an old punk band called Angry Hate or something". The first recording was in January 1999 of Larry hammering a fence against some lady's garage which was put on at the end of the song, "M.P." on the first release. That summer, they recorded four songs, all of which were old Sickness songs. "Blinking Blue Lights" was actually recorded by Kilslug, but never released. The other songs originally by the Sickness were never released. They made another EP called Bad Mood that had a certain number of copies pressed but were never officially released. Putnam and Lee Suniga (owner of Menace to Sobriety Records) sold them on eBay. Angry Hate performed two live shows in March and April 2002.
Satan's Warriors started in February 1986 after Putnam and his friends made up a fake death metal fanzine with fake band names as a joke. Putnam eventually admitted to doing it in April of that year. There was an opening for a band to play live over the radio, so Putnam got a lineup together and made a four-song demo with him on drums and vocals, and his cousin Drew on guitar. Their final show was in July 1988. They were supposed to get back together in 2003 and re-record some songs written between 1986 and 1988. The lineup was supposed to be with Putnam on guitar and vocals, Paulie Kraynak on second guitar, and John Gillis on drums.
In early 1997, Putnam and Josh Martin came up with the idea of starting a joke black metal band and decided to record a demo. They didn't use actual drums because someone was sleeping in the room next to them, so Martin played his acoustic guitar while Putnam did vocals and percussion by slapping his leg and a mattress. They did a few shows and sold copies of their first demo. The titles on the demo are different from the ones on the 7" vinyl release due to Putnam and Josh losing their copies of the demo and forgetting the titles.
Shit Scum formed in 1988 after Putnam saw an ad looking for musicians. Putnam chose to call after seeing Cryptic Slaughter as the only influence as not many people in Boston were into that band. Putnam eventually invited Fred Ordonez to see Satan's Warriors (which was their last show). Anal Cunt was also playing what was supposed to be their last show but Ordonez and his friends never showed up. Putnam did another show with Anal Cunt so Ordonez could see them, while Shit Scum also did their first show on the same day. Putnam was eventually invited to a studio to play bass on their first demo called "Self Mutilation". They later did a show in 1990; Putnam and Ordonez (without Wayne, who was their drummer) went to a studio that college rock bands mainly performed at. The engineer did not like them and tried convincing them to quit. The record was eventually finished and they ended up owing the studio money so the studio kept the master reel.
Anal Cunt did a tour in Germany and performed some Shit Scum covers. Matthias Weigand (head of Ecocentric Records) liked the cover of the song "Shit Scum" and wanted to put out a 7". Putnam called the studio and asked about the reel. The guy on the phone said "it's right here, pick it up whenever you want", not knowing they owed money to the studio. Putnam mixed all the songs and sent them to Ecocentric Records. Ordonez never had a cover for the record so Weigand made one up. The record was eventually called "Manson Is Jesus". Ordonez wanted the record to be called "I Wish this Record Could Punch You in the Face", and have a fist on the cover. Shit Scum had already broken up by the time the album was released.
Full Blown A.I.D.S. started in 1997 while Putnam was jamming with his friend and cousin. In 1998, he wrote some songs and recorded a demo of "No One Cares" with Nate Linehan on drums. In 2002 he moved to Texas for a while but eventually moved back to Boston. In 2003 the band went into the studio and recorded some songs and mixed them in a day. They eventually put out two EPs and a compilation CD in 2008, with both EPs and the song "Throwing Cars at People on Coke with Thor".
The Death's Head Quartet was a jazz/noise improvisational band that featured Putnam on bass and vocals, Chris Joyce on guitar, Robert Williams on drums, and Jim Hobbs on saxophone. Their first release was called "Live on the Joint" which was a radio broadcast from November 1, 2001. Their second release was recorded on April 9, 2001 and was not released until 2003.
Cuntsaw started in 1989 with Putnam on vocals and guitar and Tim Morse on drums. They usually practiced after Anal Cunt shows. They did one demo called "Concerned" and did one show at Brandeis University with Fred Ordonez on second guitar. They eventually broke up. The Anal Cunt song "Foreplay with a Tree Shredder" was originally a Cuntsaw song that was named "Hell Bent for Hitler".
You're Fired started in 2002. Within two months they had a nine-song demo recorded which eventually became the Warning EP and was released in 2002. After Putnam died, they made an EP called The End with Paulie Kraynak on guitar. Most of the riffs were written by Putnam and the album was also recorded with Putnam's Gibson SG and Marshall amplifier that were also used on the Warning EP. The End was released in 2012 on vinyl and it also can be purchased on BandCamp along with the Warning EP. The song "Throw It Off" from their last EP was originally an Anal Cunt song with different lyrics.
Adolf Satan started in 2002 after Upsidedown Cross broke up. Putnam played drums for the band for a brief period of time. He eventually quit and Nate Linehan joined. They recorded a demo in 2003 and eventually made a self-titled studio album. They recorded another demo in 2006 before breaking up two years later.
Upsidedown Cross started in 1989 after Larry Lifeless' band "Kilslug" had a violent breakup. The first lineup featured Larry (vocals), Cheez (bass), and Scott Vangel (guitar) who went by "Shoehorn" in the band. Taang! Records thought the band were too insane to deal with, and wouldn't sign them unless Rico Pertoleum (ex-Kilslug) was in the band, he was kicked out after the songwriting for the first record was done. J. Mascis from Dinosaur Jr. filled in on drums for the first album. Throughout the 90's they had different lineup changes and had a few more releases. Seth Putnam ended up joining them on guitar and did one show with them which also turned out to be the bands last show before they eventually broke up, Seth ended up moving to Texas. There were plans to get the band back together with Josh Martin on guitar. According to Josh, Cheez wasn't in any state to be playing an instrument, so he ended up starting Adolf Satan instead. When Seth moved back to Boston him and Josh became the two guitarists for the band, Seth ended up quitting the band in March, 2003. Seth and Josh never recorded anything with the band despite Seth being credited on their split with Sloth, Cheez decided to put out an old recording and credit the lineup they had at the time. In 2011 Upsidedown Cross became a two-piece with Seth on drums and Larry on vocals and guitar. Some rehearsal footage exists of the band.
Not much is known about this band but they had only one recording session in 2007 which eventually surfaced onto YouTube, the band had Putnam on vocals, Dejan Podobnik(Patareni, Millions of Dead Cops...) on drums and Chomi on guitar. Mickey Offender from D.R.I., Offenders, was supposed to lay a bass track but it never happened.
This band started in December 1990 and Putnam and Tim Morse were trying to think of a Christmas gift for Mike Mahan who recently moved to Indiana, they recorded a demo and got a band picture in a $2 photo booth. They sent it to Mike who eventually lost his copy, the demo was released as a split album with Cuntsaw.
Insult started in 1992 and decided to record an album in 1997, it was going horribly for them so they got Putnam to come in and produce their album, the album was called "I Wanna Be a Burn Victim", Putnam eventually became their bass player and did a west coast tour with them in 1998 as well as a live show over the radio which was released on a split with Anal Cunt, he quit in 1999.
Person Killer was a one-man project Putnam started around 1995, he made a demo and sent it to Earache Records along with a T-shirt, a pin, and a letter that didn't reveal the sender's name. It was planned to be released on a two LP set called "The Worst of Seth Putnam" but it hasn't been released.
Speculation circulated as to whether or not Putnam was a member of the white power grindcore/hardcore band Vaginal Jesus, after Putnam stated that he was just a friend of the band. However, he later retracted this claim and admitted to being a member.
Before Putnam started Anal Cunt in March 1988, he had various bands that sounded like Anal Cunt. The earliest one he could remember was The Losers, who started in 1980. The band featured Putnam doing vocals and playing a toy guitar (he could not afford a real one at the time) and his cousin Michael who played cardboard boxes as fast as possible. That band's name was eventually changed to "Noise". Putnam eventually got a real guitar and made more tapes.
George H Brown was a blues rock band that originally featured Putnam on guitar, Mike Mahan on bass, Fred Ordonez on second guitar, Tim Morse on drums, and John McCarthy on vocals. Putnam eventually got frustrated with the band and broke it up. They got back together years later with Putnam doing guitar and vocals, Paulie Kraynak on bass and Josh Randall (FUKK/Full Blown A.I.D.S live drummer) on drums. A Myspace page was made for the band and there were plans to release a debut CD.
Putnam and John Kozik started a band called "Sloth" but changed the name to "From Sloth to Anger" after finding out there was a band called Sloth in New York. The band name was taken from an inner sleeve of a Borbetomagus record. The band went nowhere and only made one tape that nobody has heard. After this, they broke up. Tim Morse had a baby on the way and Mike Mahan moved to Indiana for six months, Putnam and Tim got Anal Cunt back together with Fred Ordonez on guitar.
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