A.K.A
It's All About The Party
By:  Krista Doran
AKAThere are many cover bands on the scene today playing what they feel people want to hear.  Often times, these bands are wrong and simply fade into the background after a year or two, but not A.K.A.  They originally formed in 1985 and played at many of the local hot spots in NE Philly at the time like Effies, The Philly Cookbook, The Bridgeview and The J. R. Club.  The band has come back to play several times with Lead Vocalist Jimmy McKee and Guitarist Al Stiver at the helm.  In 2012 however, they joined forces with Bassist Mike Laquintano and Drummer John Brasch, and so far this time around has been the most fun for this talented foursome!
I spoke to Lead Singer, Jimmy McKee who explained, "We try to keep in mind that it's all about the audience and not us.  It's not about showing off and trying to impress with a ton of leads or intricate arrangements.  It's about playing music that people relate to, enjoy, sing along with and have fun with."  With so many bands out there playing the same music, A.K.A keeps it simple and they just want people to be able to enjoy themselves.  As Jimmy told me, "At the end of the night, all we want is for people to come up and say they had a great time, and leave with big smiles on their faces."
The members of A.K.A have all had a great deal of experience playing in bands through the years.  Mike has played with bands like Horizon, The BBC, PRI and in different versions of AKA. John's current bands include AKA, Shabby Road, and South Ridge Praise Band. John also fronts his own originals band, Brasch and Bold, and has released a CD of original material.  Al has played guitar and bass most recently with Shabby Road, Tasty Cavemen and Flip N Mickeys.  Jimmy, who's recently come out of retirement, started as a member of Pink Cadillac, was a regular with The Sister Blue Band, as well as various A.K.A. projects. Jimmy and AL are also very proud to have been featured individually on local music legend George Manney's 1999 release Last Minute Jam, Vol. 2: Minutes To Millennium.  Their experience and love for playing keeps their shows loose and fun and most of all, enjoyable for all music lovers.
A.K.A plays a great mix of Modern & Classic Rock and Pop, and according to Jimmy, " Basically any party music that get's people involved."  Jimmy also explained, "We're not above having groups of people on stage with us dancing and singing. We love requests and we love the crowd participating any way they can.  For us its all about the party."
You can catch A.K.A playing at local venues in both NE Philly and Bucks County, such as Daly's, Lazy Lanigan's, Hurricane Jack's and The Eddington House.  They are always a fun group of guys to see, and they definitely work hard at making sure everyone that comes to see them has a great time.  The music they play is fun and engaging, and you can always count on good times when this band is playing!  To see their full schedule and learn more about the different projects the members are involved with, please visit their website at www.akarocksonline.com.  A.K.A is Jimmy McKee, Lead Vocals; Al Stiver, Guitar & Vocals; Mike Laquintano, Bass & Vocals and John Brasch, Drums & Vocals.
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By:  Krista Doran
sc
Here at the OOT, we feature many great bands and musicians from the local area throughout the paper, but the "In The Spotlight" segment is reserved for the best.  I don't often get to choose the bands I write about, but when I do I choose carefully.  I am very proud to write this issue's article about a band that has been on the scene many years now and who is truly and exceptionally talented.
A few years back I met local musician, Michael Eli.  At the time, I was booking several rooms in the area and he had sent me some recordings of his band.  I had been working with many other bands at the time, but as soon as I heard these recordings, I was blown away.  Everything about this band stood out and I have kept in touch with Mike ever since.  I am a fan myself, and you will be too, once you hear them.  The band I am referring to is Soul Custody!
I spoke to Mike, who is a very humble and hilarious guy.  Mike explained to me that the band actually formed "by accident."  About 10 years ago, Mike had moved back home to Philly after living in Los Angeles for 15 years.  He started out just doing some solo shows and after a while started working with several different area musicians as a duo.  One of the musicians he met along the way was Ed Wall and this is where the current band began.  A short while after, Mike's lifelong friend and bass player Barry Cary started to come and sit in on bass. Things were sounding so good that they decided to call on drummer Steve Shupsky.  Things were sounding great and the guys all felt the band needed one more component.  Mike told me, "Barry and I had seen this amazing guitar player on and off for years and every single time, he just blew us away. Well what do you know, we wind up with him filling in a gig where we needed a 5th musician and we had such a blast that, the rest as they say, is history. We're still in shock that we have John Bushnell in the band!"
Soul Custody has been impressing music lovers of all kinds now for over 7 years.  They have been able to effectively infuse Soul into the Rock songs they play, as well as Rock into the Soul songs. I asked Mike to explain the kind of music they played and he said, "I think it was Duke Ellington that said 'There's only two kinds of music. Good music and bad music'. Mostly I'd say we cover Pop music. Some Rock. Some Soul. Some Blues.  It's a very energetic and danceable fusion of music. We do our best no matter what genre or style we're playing, to play Good Music … In addition to playing anywhere from 4 to 8 public shows a month, we also do a lot of private work where we can also play Jazz, Country, or some current Top 40, by request. Some highlights include: Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, Gavin DeGraw, Journey, Train, The Police, Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi, Black Crows, Top Petty, Cheap Trick, Beatles, Aerosmith, Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye, Queen, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Jack Johnson etc."
The kind of music that you will hear at a Soul Custody show is pretty eclectic.  Mike explained, "We've built our band on songs that we love. Luckily for us, they turned out to be songs lots of restaurant and bar goers also love. So we really get into our shows. No need to fake it cause we truly LOVE the songs we do and LOVE playing together in this band."  And this is evident, people.  I have seen them play, and  the chemistry is awesome between all members, whether its the duo, 4 or 5 piece. Each band member has been playing since childhood and have all been working musicians their entire lives. Ed and John teach in addition to playing in the band and Barry is an Audio/Video engineer. All members have toured and worked with many bands big and small, but of course, Mike's humility wanted to avoid the name dropping.  He is such a cool dude.  Mike does a lot of audio recording and editing, as well and writing and producing original music. He told me about his band, "I can tell you that I get to experience hearing and seeing these guys play all the time. And I still catch myself smiling at what these guys do night after night. These guys are all excellent musicians."  Mike is right.  I have to agree with that statement 100%.
When you go out to see Soul Custody in action (which I highly recommend), you will see for yourself how engaging and fun they are.  They'll start many shows off as a duo and play some more mellow instrumental  stuff and will then gradually kick it up as the night goes on.  They can accommodate any room, too, whether a duo, 4 or 5 piece is required. The duo covers all kinds of great songs by Led Zeppelin, Van Morrison, Billy Joel, Eric Clapton, James Taylor, Jason Mraz, Bob Dylan and even Pink. They also mix some Soul and Jazz into their duo shows. The 4 piece version is funky and fresh and will keep everyone dancing all night. The 5 piece version adds a more guitar driven sound. Add in some horns wherever needed and it's an even bigger sounding band! They even do some originals and in fact, they expect to be playing some of them out soon because Mike's original CD is scheduled for release in June.
Soul Custody is a great band with an even greater message for their fans.  Mike told me, "We're just musicians doing our best to help people relax and unwind and disconnect from all the bullshit life throws at them. We don't really take ourselves too seriously. We're just a local band that really loves to play and knows how to have a good time. Seems when we're having fun, it's contagious. Life is Short. Love one another. Look out for one another. Go support live music with your loved ones and get caught up in moment whenever you can. Hearing live music is an amazing blessing if you're open to it's power. We'd love to share that with anyone and everyone that wants to party and have fun."  Wise words from a wise man. How can you not love this guy?
Everyone needs to get out and see Soul Custody.  You can see them playing monthly at some great venues such as The Washington Crossing Inn, The Logan Inn, Chambers 19, The Sycamore Grill, Earl's Bucks County and The Dog & Bull.  They also play pretty regularly at The Ivy Tavern, McStews and Coconut Cove.  You can read up on the band and check out their schedule at www.soulcustody.net.  Go there now to hear some great samples of their jams - you will be dancing in your chair just listening to that!  Soul Custody is Michael Eli - Guitars & Lead & Backing Vocals, Ed Wall - Keyboards & Lead & Backing Vocals, Barry Cary - Bass & Backing Vocals, Steve Shupsky - Drums & Backing Vocals and John Bushnell - Lead Guitar & Backing Vocals.
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By: Krista Doran
tangled_logo
Tangled is a new cover band just emerging onto the scene and we thought you all would want to know about them.  Actually, they have been out before, but now with an all new line-up of great musicians that are veterans of the local music scene.
Tangled actually formed 3 years ago and right off the bat they were hitting things hard.  They even competed in the WMGK House Band competition, making it all the way to the finals!  They didn't win the title, but it gave them the push they needed to continue working hard. Unfortunately, that line-up didn't last very long and a few of the original members decided to do a re-vamp.  So, just over the course of the last few months, they picked up guitarist and keyboard player, Rob Traegler and my good friend and super awesome Lead Guitarist, Mike Margiotta (aka "Guitar Mike").
I interviewed their drummer, Gary Breza who told me, "Tangled is playing a great mix of music from the 70's through to today's Rock.  We feel most comfortable with the Classic Hard Rock style like Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, AC/DC, among others, but we also play more current stuff by Godsmack, JET, STP and The Foo Fighters, too.  While we play classic favorites, we also like to dig down a little deeper and play some of those great "B" side beauties as well."
Tangled had a GREAT turn out at their very first gig together on 1/11/13 at The Ivy Tavern in Hamilton, NJ and Gary told me, "If our first night out of the box is any indication of things to come, there is a ton of fun coming down the road for both the audience and the band." This new line-up has great chemistry and each player brings a great deal of playing experience to the band.  Gary explained, "There is no lack of talent or weak spots in this band.  Everyone works hard and has specific strong attributes that they bring to the table and use to propel this band."  Some of the places you will be able to see Tangled will be The Sticky Wicket in Hamilton, NJ; McGinn's South in Jackson, NJ and McStew's in Levittown, PA.  Their full schedule will soon be posted on their website www.tangledrocks.com and you can friend them on Facebook by looking up "Tang Led".
If you can't get enough of Classic Hard Rock, then Tangled is a band you will want to check out.  They play good Old School Hard Rock that is in your face.  They even do a few originals!  But Hard Rock is their roots and its what they do best so make sure to get out and see them!  Tangled is:  John Webb - Lead Vocals and Acoustic Guitar; Dino Colarocco - Bass, Lead and Backing Vocals; Rob Traegler - Keys, Guitar, Lead and Backing Vocals; Gary Breza - Drums and Backing Vocals and Mike "Guitar Mike" Margiotta - Lead Guitar.
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Everybody Scream!

Dec 31, 2012
By: Krista Doran
screamIf you like live music and are looking for a band that provides a high energy party-like atmosphere, then you need to check out the band Scream.
Scream was formed back in 2009 by Danny Nogo from the band Digital Getdown.  Now newly re-vamped using the same formula they started out with, this new line-up also features female vocals keeping a focus on pop-driven music.
The band plays everything you love in the Top 40, Rock and Country genres and now with rapper with Nicky T in the band, Scream is able to bring back some more dance hip hop songs as well. This ALL NEW line up has been rehearsing for about 4 now and their very first show is scheduled for Saturday, January 12th at McStew’s Irish Sports Bar located at 5316 New Falls Road in Levittown.
Scream is a band that plays whatever it takes to keep people on the dance floor.  I spoke to Danny Nogo about the all new line up and he told me, “when you come to a Scream show we want to take you away from all your troubles, show you a good time and remember anytime your feeling down, just come scream with us and we will take care of you!”
The new band is:   Nicky T (Rapper/Lead Vocals), Jessica Lauren (Lead Vocals) Joe Lowery (Guitar), Joey Potts (Bass), and Kyle Moken (Drums).  This band has something for everyone…if you want to dance, rock out or even line dance, you can do that at a new Scream show!  Be sure to check them out at McStew’s or starting on January 17th, every Thursday at the new Sheffield Taven!  To see the full line-up of shows, get more info about the band or to get booking information please go to their website, www.screamband.com.
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By:  Krista Doran
courtney_jansen_article_photoEvery once in a while a brand new original artist comes fourth from the Philly area that inspires all of us with their music.  Many of you already know the artist I am about to present from her band Gypsy Wisdom and have grown to love her; not just for her musical talents, but also for the truly beautiful person she is.  Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Courtney Jansen!
Courtney just release her CD, "Closer To Eden", an expressive, fresh and energetic collaboration between Courtney, her husband Danny Gunz, and co-writer and producer Stephen McKnight.  The soulful and poppy, positive sounds of her CD come from her inner-strength and leads the listener down Courtney's own personal path of self-awareness. I first met Courtney a few years back, when a mutual friend of ours, Lori Stidham, gathered a bunch of local musicians together for an event she called, Lovefest.  I was instantly drawn to Courtney.  She has a glow of peace and love around her, and it embraces you whenever she performs.  She is just one of those people that has a warmth about her everyone appreciates. I had the privilege of interviewing Courtney, and instead of working the questions into a story like I do for most interviews, I decided to just print the questions and answers below, so that all of our readers could get a better idea of her personality.  Here is what we discussed:
Q: Who are your major influences?
A:  Whitney Houston and Alanis Morissette
Q:  How long have you been together?
A:  This project has only been myself, my husband (Danny Gunz), producer/songwriter (Stephen McKnight), and two stellar drummers (Bobby Pyrilis and Kevin Soffera). We're not a band per say. Me, Danny, and Stephen have been working together on this project for about a year now.
Q:  Why this group of guys/what’s the chemistry like?
A:  Well the chemistry with my husband is a given:) Knowing someone so deeply has allowed us to finish each other's sentences and, in this case, lyrics. Stephen has proven to be the perfect piece to finish this tripod off. When one of us hits a creative wall, someone is always there to break it down with a fresh idea.

Q:  Who writes your songs? What the main inspiration for most of your songs? A:  It's very collaborative between the 3 of us. The general pattern has been, I come up with the initial subject matter, Danny gives it a rewrite with fresh eyes, and Stephen composes music around it all. But, it's really a mix of all those things. As for the inspiration, this whole album has been about self discovery, inner strength, and moving on.
Q:  What is the process you use to write?
A:  For the first two tracks, I had little voice memos on my phone that I brought to Danny and Stephen and we built up from there. The last track, "Surrender", was a song that Stephen had begun writing a while ago with me in mind, so we just started grooving with that sweet guitar lick and came out with a sweet EP closer.

Q:  Has your music evolved since you first began playing music together? A:  Very much so. We actually tried to get this project fired up in 2010, but as always with life, things happened and we had to put in on pause. The songs I was going to record in 2010 are much different than what we have with Closer To Eden. As I always say, "everything happens for a reason" and where I was during this writing process in 2012 was more where I wanted to be as far as inspiration and creativity.

Q:  What has been your biggest challenge as a band? A:  TIME! As you know, Danny and I are in the cover band Gypsy Wisdom and Stephen is in the cover band Steal the Sky. Between the travel, life's daily chores, and everything else sometimes it's hard to get out there and do all the things I'd like to do with this EP. But, we accept challenges! And, time will be what it will be. We have things in the works for 2013 and as long as I put them in my iPhone, they will ALL GET DONE! haha
Q:  What genre would you say you fall under?
A:  Pop rock

Q:  What are your shows like? A:  Our first original show will be in the new year, but I can tell you what those will be like. Energetic, warm, emotional, and definitely entertaining, especially with the line up of musicians who will be around me:)
Q:  How do you all like touring?
A:  When you do what you love with people you love, does it really matter where you are? Nah;)

Q:  What do you want everyone to know about your band? A:  Once upon a time, I wanted to be a famous performer. I wanted to be on Star Search with Ed McMahon soooo bad. haha. That carried over for awhile. I wanted the world to know my name. Over the past few years, as I've really come to know who I am, that shifted… big time. Now, I just want to inspire people to know themselves as they really are through the beauty of music and lyrics. The world can be a tough place if we let ourselves believe all the hype about appearances, material things, etc. But none of that is important. Being strong and healthy is beautiful. Sharing love is beautiful. That's what I"m trying to do with my songs:)
Q:  What have you done locally?
A:  I have been working in radio stations for the past couple years recording radio jingles and I have very supportive friends who are working on some things for us, I'll keep you posted. There is also a World Cafe Live show in the works that will be with two amazing women artists. This will be a highlight of my life kinda night.

Q:  What do you want the Philly area to know about you and the band?
A:  We're comin' for ya! Make sure to check the website (www.courtneyjansen.com) for all upcoming events and info. We plan to get out and share what we got in the new year and I hope to have people feeling like they're on cloud nine after a night of positive messages on sweet melodies with some very talented musicians.

Q:  What’s your advice for new original bands?
A:  Just be honest. Never write or play a note for someone else. Make it real from your heart because at the end of the day, we all have different taste in music. We're not going to please everyone. So make something that you are proud of. That's what original music is all about for me:)
You can check out the first single from the CD entitled, "The Girl I Used To Be", on itunes, and you can also grab the CD on CDBaby.  Simply go to her website www.courtneyjansen.com to check it out right now!  All of us here at the OOT would like to congratulate Courtney, Danny and Stephen on such a wonderful offering of great music!
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The Story Of Soraia:
5439363Our story starts on a particularly cold, gray winter evening. Two men stand hovering over the lifeless body of Mansour. One panics while the other holds her - tears streaming from his face dripping onto her pale skin as a needle, which provided a potent shot of cocaine to her left arm, lies next to her motionless body. There was no pulse.

For Mansour, this was just one of many failed attempts at ending her life.

Her middle class upbringing masked an emotionally and physically abusive home life that became hopeless when her mother, who was her protector, her confidante, and her best friend, passed away when Soraia was only 17. She quickly descended into a destructive lifestyle of drug and alcohol abuse. The next four years brought violent relationships, escalating drug use, and the witnessing of horrific events while living with junkies and pushers.

Try as she may, she could not escape the self-imposed abusive lifestyle which had become her reality. Penniless, homeless and left for dead, that fateful night should have been the epilogue of Soraia's turbulent life. But it wasn't. Soraia was rescued by the only person who could save her: herself.

With a newfound resolve, she got sober, re-entered college, and finished in two years with a teaching degree and the hope in her heart to finally begin a life she was yet waiting to live. Still, teaching proved not enough to quell her intense longing for expression. She turned to poetry, writing, and finally her first love, singing. Driven and determined, tough and still tender, she began her singing career winning over fans immediately with her passion, pain, and raw emotion. Soraia formed her band in late 2004, and began writing songs and performing live anywhere and everywhere she could. With the same intensity and resolve she had approached every addiction she ever had, she went after her heart’s ultimate desire.

Soraia gives life to her experiences through her voice, and molds the best and worst of her life story through song. A warrior at heart, nowhere is the true Soraia more visible than on stage during one of the band’s ferociously energetic, intoxicating live shows. Her voice showcases the will to survive with a defiant, full-throated vocal performance reminiscent of the great women of rock, such as Grace Slick and Tina Turner. Her sexuality and rawness demand attention of even the most passive of listeners- inviting all of us to the danger rock n’ roll promised to be.

Whether in a hot, sweaty rock club or a massive amphitheatre, Soraia’s charisma and spirit transcends the concert stage and reaches all those who witness SORAIA live. Rarely will you see a band with so much magic and soul as SORAIA. And never will you hear a story so full of hope and heart as that of Soraia Mansour. Her every breath is a testament that miracles really do exist, and that the underdog really can win the whole world.
On June 6, 2012 Jon Bon Jovi attended a Soraia Industry Showcase in Philadelphia, PA. On September 26, 2012 in NYC, Jon Bon Jovi was spotted again at Soraia's Industry Showcase in support of their upcoming major release.
Band Members:
ZouZou Mansour - Vocals
Anthony Renzulli - Rhythm Guitar
Brain Cassidy - Lead Guitar
Travis Smith - Bass Guitar
Jason Miraglia - Drums
Mike Lawson - Keyboard
SHOW DATES:
Thu Nov 15 - 10:30PM
Rebel Rock Bar
Acoustic Show

Fri Nov 23 - 9PM
Club Risque


Thu Nov 29 - 5PM
Soraia LIVE! on 93.3 WMMR FM's "Camp Out for Hunger" on Jaxon's Show


Fri Nov 30 - 5PM
Soraia on Radio 104.5 FM Philadelphia: "Live at 5"


Fri Nov 30 - 8PM
Bus Stop Music Cafe/Record Store
ALL AGES ACOUSTIC SHOW

Thu Dec 06 - 11PM
Hot Shots
21+

Fri Dec 07 - 9PM
Studio 98


Fri Dec 21 - 9PM
A Holiday Evening with Soraia at Sine Studios
ALL AGES

Fri Jan 11 2013 - 9PM
JB McGinnes


Sat Jan 26 2013
The Note
18+


For all updates on Soraia, please visit SORAIA.COM
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By:  Krista Doran
564714_3985974091671_1691240409_nSince 1994, there has been one band consistently rocking the Philly Cover band scene and that band is Steamroller Picnic!
I spoke to Lead singer, Judge DeFazio and asked him what their shows are like and he explained, "We usually play 3 sets of popular, high energy music that appeals to each person in the room at some point. We like to get the crowd involved. Whether it be a Birthday girl, bachelorette party, or guys that want to rock with us."
No matter where this band plays, whether it be a big club or local bar, this band gives it their all.  They will rock the place from the first note to the last and people are always very entertained, that's a fact. What makes this band different is their commitment to what they are doing and the chemistry of the current line-up.  There have been quite a few members in and out of the band over the years, but Judge told me, "the four of us just seem to be able to read each other's minds.This makes for a truly unique performance each and every time we play."
Steamroller Picnic can ignite any party or venue with the vast list of genres in which they play.  They play songs from Usher and Cee-Lo to Rage Against The Machine and Metallica and will keep the party going all night long.  All members of the band have strong backgrounds in music and have been playing in many bands and side projects over the years.
You can see the band playing all over the area and quite a bit in Atlantic City including The Borgata, Showboat, Bally's, Golden Nugget, The Hilton and Tropicana - just to name a few.  When not in AC, they play in several other bars and clubs in the Philly area.
The guys in the band also dabble in their own original side projects.  For instance Judge explained, "Bones is currently in the band  "The Endless March". The competition was created by 93.3 WMMR to pick 6 person band comprised of the best musicians from the Philly region. They played Susquehanna Bank Center for the MMRBQ w/ Shinedown & Godsmack this past summer. And are playing Sold Out show at TLA on Halloween!"
It's good to know that Steamroller Picnic is still out there doing their thing.  They still rock each and every place they play, and they are better than ever!  If you want to go see them live, here is their current schedule:  11/2: Dover Downs Fire & Ice - Dover, DE; 11/3: RiRa's Irish Pub - Atlantic City, NJ; 11/8: The Social @ Revel - Atlantic City, NJ; 11/17: Cap'ns Corner - Woodbury, NJ; 11/24: PC Pub - Pennsburg, PA;11/30: Top Dog - Cherry Hill; NJ, 12/1: Borgata's Gypsy Bar - Atlantic City, NJ; 12/8: SugarHouse Refinery Bar - Philadelphia, PA; 12/22: Cap'ns Corner - Woodbury, NJ; 12/29: Top Dog; 12/31: The Piazza @ Schmidt's - Philly.
If you are interested in booking the band, please contact Shore Bets at 215-884-4357. You can also check them outr online at www.steamrollerpicnic.com!
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By:  Krista Doran
electric_boaSince 2008 Electric Boa has been tearing up the original music scene with their own unique brand of Rock and Roll.  With very powerful lyrics and a very strong, guitar driven sound this band has certainly positioned themselves as one of the most talked about original bands in the area.
I spoke to drummer Ken Mondillo about the band and what they are all about.  I was particularly interested in what their song writing process was like and he told me, "Higgsy writes all the songs. I've asked him more than a few times where he gets his inspiration from & he tells me that it just comes to him. One of our new songs that we are currently working on came from his girlfriend watching the HBO show "True Blood". To tell you the truth his mind doesn't work like yours or mine. Higgs sees things in a different light which allows his expressions to come out in lyrics that are truly unique."  The combination of musicians in this band works so well together.  Ken told me, "Higgsy will play us the melody or riff on an acoustic guitar & we start building it from there. He usually has the whole song in his head...music & everything. We just find a way to pull it out of him & translate it into a song. Joe Fortino & Higgsy are kind of the arrangers of the songs & Tripp, G & myself build up the songs from there ."  What this band is able to accomplish is truly a team effort.
As with most bands, there are always challenges, but The Electric Boa is focused on what they are doing.  I asked Ken what some of their biggest challenges as a band were and he told me, "I wouldn't say it's a challenge because every band goes through this, but trying to get your music heard is always a priority. Whether it be by getting the biggest gig or getting your music played on the radio, the challenge will always be there. The Electric Boa will keep pumping out killer tunes & promoting our shows, big or small, as much as we can. We want to build a fan base within every venue we play!" And they have been doing just that!  Their shows are full of energy.  They don't just get up there and play.  This band puts on a real Rock Show for their fans.  In fact, they will be playing the Grand Opening of JC's Washington House (formerly Whiskey Tango) on September 28th so be sure to get out and see what makes The Electric Boa different!
For everyone that is already a fan and those of you that certainly will become a fan once you experience The Electric Boa, I am happy to say they have a bunch of new music coming out!  This is going to be a very exciting follow up to their current CD, "Candy Coated Cyanide."  Ken explained "Songs are written & being worked as we speak so every Boa show your going to get new stuff. We also have more shows booked but we'll be posting them on our website & Facebook page soon."  This band definitely has a personality all it's own and their swagger comes from their lead singer, Higgsy.  Ken told me, "His mind is in places I've never visited. He's bringing a whole new genre to the rock scene with his lyrics alone."  This band's chemistry just works.  From the subtle notes that  guitarist Joe Fortino add in that just make things "snap", to bassist Greg Cornwell bringing the groove, and the heavy hitting guitar of Gregg Tripp, I can see why Ken decided to move from the cover scene to take a stab at writing and performing originals.  Ken's power drumming deserves a place in the original scene and adds a steady component that drives their music.
If you are just now hearing about The Electric Boa, where have you been?  They already have some great accolades, including opening for national acts such as Skid Row, Anvil & Kix. Earlier in 2012 they opened for Octane at The Electric Factory. Ken tells me they want to do so much more, and I have a feeling they definitely will!  "We want to entertain as many people as possible with our music. There are many great bands out there on the original scene & we don't want to take anything away from any of them but come out to an Electric Boa show & see for yourselves that we are trying to be as unique as possible with our tunes & our stage show. We put on a "concert" for you & make every show worth it's money,"  Ken told me and spoken like a true pro, who knows what he wants. After seeing the band, all I have to say is keep an eye on these guys. They are making Philly proud!
Be sure to check out their website at www.electricboa.com to keep up with thier tour dates and when the new stuff is coming out!  The Electric Boa is:  Higgsy - Lead vocals; Joe Fortino - Guitar;  Gregg Tripp - Guitar; Greg "G" Cornwall - Bass and Ken Mondillo - Drums.  SUPPORT LOCAL LIVE MUSIC!
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By:  Krista Doran
WP_Elwyn_Day_final_version_flattened_cropped_bottom_72_dpi_This issue's featured band started back in 2000 as a four piece with a member who was very, well, let's say "elusive."  He would come all the way from New Jersey to rehearse at the bass player's home.  Sometimes he would even stay the entire weekend so that the band could jam into the wee hours of the morning.  Then he would just leave, and the band wouldn't see him for months!  His name was "Pete", and the band would joke that the next formation of the band would be called "Where's Pete?", and the name just stuck.  Today the band, now twice that size, has has erupted onto the local music scene as one of the newest, most bad ass horn bands on the circuit.
I spoke to drummer and vocalist Miles Adams who told me "I remember seeing Johnny O & The Classic Dogs of Love back in the day and being so impressed with their song selection, tight musical arrangements,confident stage show and big sound & light production.  That's the kind of cover band I want Where's Pete to be and the show we strive to put on. Since we’re not writing the music, the creativity comes from playing the songs with clear arrangements and conviction."  This band works very hard at putting on a great show, but likes to have a lot of fun doing so.  Miles went on to tell me, "we don’t take ourselves that seriously. We try to add humor to the shows too…For instance, we cover the History of a Hip Medley that was originally done by Justin Timberlake, Jimmy Falon, & The Roots. It’s a killer medley, done chronologically by year, that pays homage to all the most notable rappers and hip hop artists starting with Kurtis Blow, Salt n Peppa and Black Sheep, up through Fifty Cent, Lil Wayne & Rick Ross and believe me, nothing is funnier than seeing Nicky D trying to get gansta doing Blowing Money Fast! It’s a lot of fun to perform and people really seem to get a kick out of it."
When you go to see Where's Pete, you can expect to hear tunes from many different genres.  Miles explained, "We feel all genres have something of value to offer…While some bands stick to one style, I've always loved the bands that kill a Jay Z tune and then transitions into a heavy metal tune or a country tune, and play it convincingly. That’s one way in which Where’s Pete is different - no style is off limits…the only requirement is people have to be able to groove to it!" The versatility of this band is something that definitely sets them apart from other horn bands.  Just about all of the members of Where's Pete have fronted their own band at one time or another.  They are all strong, confident players with backgrounds in theater, dance and performance and it always makes for a fun and unique show.  Miles told me, "Bands often take their cue from the crowd. A hyped crowd makes a show feel effortless, and the interplay between band members magical. But, a subdued crowd can sap a band's energy or shake their confidence because you feel nobody enjoys or is in to it. Where’s Pete strives to make every performance feel like a show at a packed Lincoln Financial Stadium! You can expect high energy at all times, and interaction with the crowd.  Our singers often head into the crowd with wireless mics to make the audience members part of the show. We have five strong vocalists, so there’s a ton of variety not just in terms of genre, but in who is singing at any one time. There are also plenty of harmonies, choreography, seamless transitions and unpredictable tunes form genres at far ends of the musical spectrum."
You can catch Where's Pete playing at some awesome venues, such as The SugarHouse Casino, PJ Whelihan's, The Temperance House, Havana, Molly Maguire's, and many weddings and corporate events.  They also play for smaller rooms and events as a duo or trio.  Here are just a few of their upcoming shows: 9/1 - Holiday Inn Car Show, Ft. Washington PA; 9/7 - Magerk's Patio Party, Ft. Washington, PA; 9/15 - Club Zinc, Lansdale PA; 9-21 - Davinci's in Collegeville, PA and 9/28 - The Temperance House in Newtown, PA.  To view their full schedule, please visit their website at www.wherespeteband.com.  To book the band, send an email to wherespete@gmail.com.
So, to answer the question Where's Pete...well, let's just say the legend of Pete has grown. Some guess he’s a CIA agent…Others swear he’s a survivalist living in the Smokey Mountains. Miles went on to say "There are Pete sightings, and at every show people ask “So Where Is Pete, anyway”…and we tell them 'we’re on a musical quest to find him….let us know if you do so we can stop playing!' He surfaced on our website message board a few years ago, and that’s the last time we heard from him. The band line up has changed quite a bit over the years, but we all share the same intense desire to find Pete!"
Where's Pete is Miles Adams- drums/vocasl; Jack Connell-Trombone; Nick Dirocco-keys/vocals; Jim Furlow- Sax; Joe Caristo- guitar/vocals; David Gaines-Trumput; Darlene White- Lead vocals and Howard Whitman-Bass. Go check out Where's Pete if you are looking to enjoy your evening with friends and listen to top end, concise and certainly fun music, onstage antics and personality!  See for yourself why so many people are asking the question, Where's Pete!
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By: Krista Doran 36583_10150969713150661_1687122810_nIf you grew up to the sounds of Pink Floyd, or even if you are just a fan of their music you are going to be very interested in seeing the band I am featuring this month, Think Pink Floyd! Think Pink Floyd is the Tri-state area's most popular Pink Floyd Tribute and if you have ever seen them, you understand why. I spoke to founder and driving force behind Think Pink Floyd, Billy Martin who told me, "Think Pink Floyd delivers a concert experience that captures the mood, emotions and the intensity of the Pink Floyd theatrical presentation." This 6 piece band features four vocalists, album sound effects and a choreographed light show of rolling fog and state-of-the-art intelligent lighting and the same back drop video used by Pink Floyd. Billy explained, "At a Think Pink Floyd show, you are led along many beautiful and complicated paths through 'Speak to Me', 'Breathe', 'On The Run' and 'Time', before the show climaxes with 'The Great Gig in the Sky'." I asked Billy what he felt was different about what they do and he explained "We try to play this music note for note, just as Pink Floyd would play it. We like to see ourselves as a concept band. We work hard on getting every aspect of the presentation right. Everything has to be dead on and still remain faithful to what we feel is the spirit of Pink Floyd". Judging from the facial expressions and reactions of the band's audience, Think Pink Floyd does just that! When speaking with Billy, I really got the impression that Think Pink Floyd is really not about the individual band members, but more about the music of Pink Floyd as a whole. Each member is very dedicated to putting on the best show possible and they take it very seriously. They do quite a bit from the albums, "Dark Side of The Moon", and of course, "The Wall", but they will also mix in songs from every Pink Floyd album which is really a treat for all who love their music. It's almost like seeing the real thing! Think Pink Floyd has been called "The Greatest Pink Floyd Show" and there is no wondering why. Anyone that has seen them perform can attest to the high level of musicianship and real feel of the music you will experience. This isn't something you would attend and expect to hear a mediocre rendition...this is as close as you are going to get without going to see the REAL Pink Floyd! If you want to experience the music for yourself, here are some of their upcoming shows: 8/5 - 6 pm Free Concert at The Quakertown Music Festival (700 W Mill St Quakertown PA) 8/11 - 1 pm Tribute Palooza 2012 at The Ukie Club (847 N Franklin St Phila PA) 8/18 - 10 pm Sweeney's Station Saloon (13639 Philmont Ave Phila PA) 9/15 - Us and Them Think Pink and Steal Your Face at The Legendary Dobbs (304 South St Phila PA) You can stay in touch with the band and follow them by viewing their full schedule any time at www.thinkpinkfloyd.com. ; Get ready to have your mind blown!
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