In 1990, a group of friends were attending college at Virginia Tech in the mountains of Virginia. Among them were Stephen Jackson and Chris Watt who had previously dabbled in playing punk rock covers.
Soon after, a mutual friend, Tal Bayer, began attending nearby Radford University. He was interested in ska, reggae and rugby and suggested that they form a ska band. After recruiting a high school friend, Tom Goodin, and an Architecture classmate, Ben Gauslin, The Slugs were born. Soon, they were skipping classes, melding ska, reggae, R & B and punk rock while practicing for hours to learn songs by Madness, The Specials, Bad Manners, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Burial, The Skatalites, The Business, The Four Skins and others. Unfortunately, the name The Slugs was already taken and the band needed a new name. For a few months, the name was changed to the Dancehall Crashers. It was too similar to another ska band out west so the search for a new name continued. Some British neighbors used to refer to the heftier guys in the band as Pietasters, which is British slang for "fat guys", chanting "They'll eat your pies, they'll tell you lies, you won't believe the bastards' size! The Pietasters!" This was part of a British football chant, and was probably based on the Macc Lads tune Fat Bastard, the original lyrics being "He'll eat your pies, he'll tell you lies, You wouldn't believe that fat bastard's size". Continuing the Macc Lads theme, the band's name may also have been based on the Macc Lads single, Pietaster. One way or the other, the name stuck and The Pietasters were born.close