Leozards had died in its infancy in mid-1994. Later that same year, for my eighth birthday I received a drumset. Although I was initially reluctant, I fully graduated from my bucket drumset within a few weeks. A year of drum lessons reinvigorated my desire to form a band. Around this same time, I joined the local Cub Scouts where I met and became friends with schoolmate Jonathan Whitaker. His love of Green Day drove him to want to be a singer, and we decided to form a band. Within a few days, Sam Spear, Jonathan's friend and an acquaintance of mine, indicated his desire to play keyboard in the group. Thus, Price Tag was formed.
Our name came from cassette tape label I had drawn. Over the previous summer, my sister Zoë and I had performed some backyard concerts with our step-cousins in Mississippi, and I had named our group The Animals. At this time, I hadn't heard of the 1960s pop group of the same name. Nevertheless, I had drawn a cassette tape label for our first album, Price Tag, just in case we had the opportunity to record some day. Once Jonathan, Sam, and I formed our new band, I looked at this tape and decided Price Tag was a perfect name.
For weeks after we formed, we wrote lyrics and practiced at recess for what would become the beginning of our first album, Connection. After only a month or two, Jonathan decided to quit the band, leaving only Sam and me to continue. We persevered, recording as a duo to finish the album over the following summer. Although I had started off as the drummer, I quickly migrated to guitar while Sam took over my drumming responsibilites. As a duo, Sam and I completed another album and a half (The Crazy Cat Walks at Midnight and Boo). Although originally Sam and I were in the same fourth grade class, the classes restructured a month into the school year and put Sam in another class. It was around this time that we gained our next member, Chris Duffie. Chris was Sam's friend at the time and he joined as our rhythm guitarist. However, due to the fact that Chris was in my class and Sam was not, Chris and I ended up recording the next one and a half Price Tag albums (the remainder of Boo and all of Peace!) without Sam.
By the second half of fourth grade, I had honed my guitar skills considerably, and Price Tag finally turned into something formidable. We had our first two concerts and gained a new member, Lindsay McPhail, to sing and play keyboards. Over months, which seemed like a long time for us, we recorded 1st. At the time, this seemed like a massive achievement, both because of the drawn-out recording process and because our popularity at school as a band was growing. But our pride ended up becoming our downfall.
For some inexplicable reason, Chris and I decided to kick Sam out of the band, leaving just us and Lindsay to record Shofuda. After this, Lindsay quit the band, effectively ending the Price Tag legacy... almost. Chris and I continued recording, both as New Clear NRG and as Toadstool, under which we produced the album Sky. However, eventually Chris decided to quit the band merely a month before an important scheduled concert.
But all was not lost! I approached Sam and apologized for our tumultuous past, leading to us practicing and recording again over the summer after fifth grade to prepare for the aforementioned concert. We readopted the name Price Tag and made Toadstool, an album named to poke fun at the Price Tag offshoot Chris and I had formed. I also took the live recordings we had hitherto produced, and turned them into another album, Live!. Sam and I went to different middle schools, and Price Tag eventually became too difficult to keep together. We made one more album, Funktified, and played more concerts over the summer of 1999, but we both decided that our three-year legacy had run its course. Thus, Price Tag ceased to exist.