Pete Donnelly is an accomplished solo artist and a former member of NRBQ, but you probably know him better as the bassist, one of the vocalists, and a founding member of The Figgs. Since starting out in Saratoga Springs, New York in 1987, The Figgs have played thousands of shows all over the U.S. and beyond, they’ve toured with the likes of Weezer and The Cranberries, and they’ve managed dozens of timeless releases.

Prior to a recent run of shows in the Midwest in accordance with the band’s just-released Chemical Shake, Donnelly spoke to My First Band host Tyler Maas the new album, why Wisconsin is like a second home to the band, and some of the most memorable moments from his 35 years in The Figgs. Along the way, Donnelly discussed his own musical start, his recent output, the experience of having a song placement in a Lexus commercial, and the importance of retaining ownership of your material.

My First Band is sponsored by Mystery Room Mastering and Lakefront Brewery. The show is edited by Jared Blohm. You can listen to My First Band on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, and wherever else you get podcasts. You can also listen to rebroadcasts of previous My First Band episodes on WMSE every Wednesday from noon to 12:30 p.m. CST. Music used in this episode comes courtesy of Devils Teeth (“The Junction Street Eight Tigers”) and The Figgs (“Jump This Jive”).