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Favorite local cover bands


mstreck

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I was in a FB conversation with a fellow forumite and we started talking about other cover bands. I mentioned a few of my local favorites - ones that I always try to go see when I can. I figured it couldn't hurt to give them props here as well. I recommend that you catch them if you can!

 

From the Ocean City, MD area - "Loud Love" - I have no trouble enduring hours of beach traffic to see these guys - great showmen! http://www.facebook.com/people/Loud-Love/100000510142696

 

From more inland (Salisbury, MD) - "Riot Act" - again, always a good show! Rumor is that they may have recently called it quits :(. I can't find their facebook page, but here is an old myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/riotact2008 -

 

And from Philly - "Doc Hollywood" - Super fun band! We play a few of the same places, and I try to catch a show when I can. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Doc-Hollywood-BAND/155770901104229

 

As a bonus, they are all bands filled with good people!

 

Don't get me wrong. There are other good bands around here, but these are definitely *my* top three recommendations.

 

So... who would you recommend if I came to your neck of the woods?

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Growing up around here where a bunch of relatively local bands made it big (Styx, Buckinghams, Shadows of Knight, Chicago, Off Broadway, Survivor, The Ides of March, The Cryan Shames, Head East, REO Speedwagon, Cheap Trick, Smashing Pumpkins, amoung others) my all time favorite was a band called Risk. They still occasionally play out but they have always been known as a band that did their own thing. Great sound, great songs and some serious chops.

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Growing up around here where a bunch of relatively local bands made it big (Styx, Buckinghams, Shadows of Knight, Chicago, Off Broadway, Survivor, The Ides of March, The Cryan Shames, Head East, REO Speedwagon, Cheap Trick, Smashing Pumpkins, amoung others) my all time favorite was a band called Risk. They still occasionally play out but they have always been known as a band that did their own thing. Great sound, great songs and some serious chops.

 

 

I was livng and playing in the south bend indiana area when the shames were making it big. Awsome band and we were lucky enough to have the vocals to cover their stuff. It pushed us to the head of the pack when it came to teen bands. I liked the one eye'd jacks too ,, best version of jailhouse rock I have ever heard from a cover band. they rocked

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I haven't heard them yet, but I hear this band The Tricky Dickies down here are pretty bad ass :D

 

For real though, Spank The Monkey is a fantastic 4-piece lots of early 90's grungy kinda stuff. Their lead singer is probably the best male singer down here. Definitely worth catching.

 

Truthfully, the "big money" bands down here are so overly tracked and gimmicked out, they bore the hell out of me...

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The band in the area I much love an respect is a local band that should have by all means gotten a signed record deal years ago. They are called 'Live Society': an 8 piece RnB/soul/ funk band that plays originals and covers. They sound like Stevie Wonder backed by Toto. Terrific throwback band that plays on the level of Maroon5. Two of their singers made it out to LA on American Idol. They've been doing this nearly a decade and still no deal. They started in their 20's and are now reaching their early to mid 30's.

We share a bunch of rooms together as they blast out Stevie, M.Jackson, EWF, Maroon 5 and Jamirquoi. In my opinion they are one of the best unsigned bands around NYC.

http://www.reverbnation.com/livesociety

 

[video=youtube;UMcSWsZImLs]

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The band in the area I much love an respect is a local band that should have by all means gotten a signed record deal years ago. They are called 'Live Society': an 8 piece RnB/soul/ funk band that plays originals and covers. They sound like Stevie Wonder backed by Toto. Terrific throwback band that plays on the level of Maroon5. Two of their singers made it out to LA on American Idol. They've been doing this nearly a decade and still no deal. They started in their 20's and are now reaching their early to mid 30's.

 

 

Good band. Good vocals. Seems like they might have just missed their time: too late for the late 90s boy-band/R&B revival; and now they'll just be too old for the next time that comes around. Too bad.

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The front three might have had a chance at the big leagues ,, but the backing band isnt to that level. Dont get me wrong they are good , but unless the back liners are singing , they are replaceable by better players. I would guess the first move a label would make would be to throw them over the side/

 

Yea I know I am being picky. I am sure they are a top cover band in your area and top local players

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The front three might have had a chance at the big leagues ,, but the backing band isnt to that level. Dont get me wrong they are good , but unless the back liners are singing , they are replaceable by better players. I would guess the first move a label would make would be to throw them over the side

 

 

These are guys who just missed their time. It's pretty common: kids grow up liking a certain style and by the time they are ready to "make it" that style is over-and-done as far as the market is concerned. I'm guessing these are kids who grew up listening to Backstreet Boys and 'NSync and other late 90s acts like that. But by the time they got out there, the "cute-guys-singing-harmony-thing" was over. You're right--the band itself is pretty much irrelevant. Maybe a label would have signed the whole deal; maybe just the front guys. Doesn't matter though--they weren't interested in the front guys.

 

I'm starting to sense a return to good singing in pop music. Already there's less auto-tuned stuff than there was a year ago. If these guys were still 19-20, I bet there would be some interest NOW for what they might be a couple of years down the road. But at 30-35? Not so much.

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These are guys who just missed their time. It's pretty common: kids grow up liking a certain style and by the time they are ready to "make it" that style is over-and-done as far as the market is concerned. I'm guessing these are kids who grew up listening to Backstreet Boys and 'NSync and other late 90s acts like that. But by the time they got out there, the "cute-guys-singing-harmony-thing" was over. You're right--the band itself is pretty much irrelevant. Maybe a label would have signed the whole deal; maybe just the front guys. Doesn't matter though--they weren't interested in the front guys.


I'm starting to sense a return to good singing in pop music. Already there's less auto-tuned stuff than there was a year ago. If these guys were still 19-20, I bet there would be some interest NOW for what they might be a couple of years down the road. But at 30-35? Not so much.

 

 

yep ,, exactly Our lead player was in a band in the 70s that was signed to three major labels. Killer ass band but they were just a tad late for the crossover country train. so close but just timed out on the genre. He dropped out of music for years. I met him at a condo jam session on the island and that was the start of our backing band. yea age is an issue for sure. Country is the most age friendly genre and thats only for the back line guys ,, the kid out front has to have good hair or a hat and size 32 jeans. Trop/ country is a little more forgivving ,, zack brown dont look like he missed too many meals and the lumber jack beard isnt very beach. The sock cap hopfully is covering a bald head ,, if its not he should lose that puppy lol

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yep ,, exactly Our lead player was in a band in the 70s that was signed to three major labels. Killer ass band but they were just a tad late for the crossover country train. so close but just timed out on the genre. He dropped out of music for years. I met him at a condo jam session on the island and that was the start of our backing band.

 

 

Yep. That's pretty much my story as well. Although I never even got signed because I was probably a day-later-and-a-dollar-shorter to the scene I was trying to compete in than your guitarist was with his. In this business you gotta be the NEXT big thing. Being even a kick-ass version of the last big thing isn't good enough.

 

That's the problem with starting out as a cover band. You might get really good at covering what's on the radio TODAY, but you'll always be a year-or-two behind what the labels are looking for.

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Country is the most age friendly genre and thats only for the back line guys ,, the kid out front has to have good hair or a hat and size 32 jeans. Trop/ country is a little more forgivving ,, zack brown dont look like he missed too many meals and the lumber jack beard isnt very beach. The sock cap hopfully is covering a bald head ,, if its not he should lose that puppy lol

 

 

Yep. The music business is a young-man's game for sure. When I started out I gave myself until I was 25 to either make-it-or-go-home. I stuck it out until I was 30 and by then I was feeling VERY OLD compared to the hipper guys coming up on the scene. Guys sticking out past then are bordering on kidding themselves big time. Sure, there's the occassional odd story of somebody who makes it at an older age, but those stories are so few-and-far between you probably have better odds of hitting the lottery.

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Yep. That's pretty much my story as well. Although I never even got signed because I was probably a day-later-and-a-dollar-shorter to the scene I was trying to compete in than your guitarist was with his. In this business you gotta be the NEXT big thing. Being even a
kick-ass
version of the last big thing isn't good enough.


That's the problem with starting out as a cover band. You might get really good at covering what's on the radio TODAY, but you'll always be a year-or-two behind what the labels are looking for.

 

 

Most bands that make it only have a short time at the top level ... these guys did that. The list of acts that they opened for and that opened for them is impressive. He is a great musican.

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The front three might have had a chance at the big leagues ,, but the backing band isnt to that level. Dont get me wrong they are good , but unless the back liners are singing , they are replaceable by better players. I would guess the first move a label would make would be to throw them over the side/


Yea I know I am being picky. I am sure they are a top cover band in your area and top local players

 

Really? :confused:Certainly not their best presentation (Rockwood Music Hall NYC pushes you on and off stage in less than 10 minutes.... it's all house gear pretty much) I happen to think the band they have a pretty tight presentation. The guitarist and sax player are Berkley grads and the keys play toured and recorded with Shemekia Copeland for seven years. But hey... i guess a label could replace them because they aren't singing backups (why would that be neccesary if you have three primaries up front?). But then who would write the songs. ;) The guitarist and sax are principle songwriters and handle most of the arranging. ;)

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Really? :confused:Certainly not their best presentation (Rockwood Music Hall NYC pushes you on and off stage in less than 10 minutes.... it's all house gear pretty much) I happen to think the band they have a pretty tight presentation. The guitarist and sax player are Berkley grads and the keys play toured and recorded with Shemekia Copeland for seven years. But hey... i guess a label could replace them because they aren't singing backups (
why would that be neccesary
if you have three primaries up front?). But then who would write the songs.
;)
The guitarist and sax are principle songwriters and handle most of the arranging.
;)

 

Money Its cheaper to bring in session guys than it is to carve up the pie. You sign the three faces and voices up front ,, you hire the rest done for a fixed fee with no strings attached. buy the songs or hire co writers to babysit the three up front, hire a road band of session guys.

 

why bring three guys that are total back liners along to the party, for the big money? Just my feeling on the matter.

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Money
Its cheaper to bring in session guys than it is to carve up the pie. You sign the three faces and voices up front ,, you hire the rest done for a fixed fee with no strings attached. buy the songs or hire co writers to babysit the three up front, hire a road band of session guys.


why bring three guys that are total back liners along to the party, for the big money? Just my feeling on the matter.

 

 

I don't disagree... isn't that the business. Hacking and sawing bands til the package is right. And maybe that's why they were never signed. They were a package deal. And some of the players are principle songwriters. So no one is backing really. Except maybe the rhythm section.

 

I will say one thing Tim... and maybe some of your views are embedded in the 'country' music field. Most of my experience has been with rock bands, and the bands that get signed may jettison a weaker player or two, but most rarely evolve around the 'singer' as the package. Bands on a whole are mostly collaborative outfits to the extent of laying down the music and arranging. I think it's alot more prevalent in country to surround a singer with a band, regardless who is in the lineup. I've seen many cases where a rock band may choose a lead singer that wasn't it's 'core' but unless your an established solo artist it's rare for a rock singer to have a label form the band around them. And those that do don't last more than an album or two.

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Really? :confused:Certainly not their best presentation (Rockwood Music Hall NYC pushes you on and off stage in less than 10 minutes.... it's all house gear pretty much) I happen to think the band they have a pretty tight presentation. The guitarist and sax player are Berkley grads and the keys play toured and recorded with Shemekia Copeland for seven years. But hey... i guess a label could replace them because they aren't singing backups (why would that be neccesary if you have three primaries up front?). But then who would write the songs.
;)
The guitarist and sax are principle songwriters and handle most of the arranging.
;)

 

 

Don't you know that anyone in any band that goes anywhere, even the sound man and road crew, must be a top notch singer and ace showman, and if they aren't it's because the didn't play high school dances? :lol:

 

Seriously, someone has to tell the hundreds of backup players I've seen at the concerts I've been to that didn't sing a note or leave their spot on stage that they aren't going to make it. :facepalm::wave:

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TESTER from Framingham, MA is a three-piece trio that melts faces every time they play. Combine `80s pop with the intensity of Pantera and BAM, you get Tester.

www.tester13.com

 

What's rad is two of the guys have an `80s cover band called Shotgun Wedding Band that delivers `80s pop covers in the same energy and intensity as the Tester stuff. You ain't live until you've had to head bang to Duran Duran.

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I will say one thing Tim... and maybe some of your views are embedded in the 'country' music field. Most of my experience has been with rock bands, and the bands that get signed may jettison a weaker player or two, but most rarely evolve around the 'singer' as the package. Bands on a whole are mostly collaborative outfits to the extent of laying down the music and arranging. I think it's alot more prevalent in country to surround a singer with a band, regardless who is in the lineup. I've seen many cases where a rock band may choose a lead singer that wasn't it's 'core' but unless your an established solo artist it's rare for a rock singer to have a label form the band around them. And those that do don't last more than an album or two.

 

 

I think Tim sees three singers up front and thinks Three Dog Night where the backing band could be almost anybody. (Although 3DN had pretty much the same band their entire run.)

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Don't you know that anyone in any band that goes anywhere, even the sound man and road crew, must be a top notch singer and ace showman, and if they aren't it's because the didn't play high school dances?
:lol:

Seriously, someone has to tell the hundreds of backup players I've seen at the concerts I've been to that didn't sing a note or leave their spot on stage that they aren't going to make it.
:facepalm::wave:

 

Pat ,, to really know whats going on, you would have to see their contract. All players may seem equal on that concert stage ,, but if we were able to dig into it many so called band members are hired sidemen. Lets say your country song gets you a recording contract. Are you going to take the guys you have in your band along for an equal ride? Is the recording company going to say ok ,, we are paying the money ,, we want you to use these guys we have in our pool of studio guns. You said it yourself ,, its not 1964.

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Do you think they all had equal deals?

 

 

3DN was kind of a strange band from what I know of their history. A lot of groups during that time period were put together by the labels themselves. 3DN was much more under their own control. The 3 singers formed the band and the record deal was a result of a record deal Cory Wells already had. The 3 singers also found all the material themselves. They also had an agreement that none of them would ever take songwriting credits (even though they occassionally re-wrote lyrics and therefore COULD have) so that none of them would have a financial advantage over the others.

 

I'm guessing the three singers had the deal with the label and then paid the rest of the band based on an agreement between themselves and the band and the label didn't have much to do with it at all. But that is based on the fact that the singers got signed before they put the band together.

 

Should a label want to sign a band that is already an ongoing entity, then that's a whole different deal.

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3DN was kind of a strange band from what I know of their history. A lot of groups during that time period were put together by the labels themselves. 3DN was much more under their own control. The 3 singers formed the band and the record deal was a result of a record deal Cory Wells already had. The 3 singers also found all the material themselves. They also had an agreement that none of them would ever take songwriting credits (even though they occassionally re-wrote lyrics and therefore COULD have) so that none of them would have a financial advantage over the others.


I'm guessing the three singers had the deal with the label and then paid the rest of the band based on an agreement between themselves and the band and the label didn't have much to do with it at all. But that is based on the fact that the singers got signed before they put the band together.


Should a label want to sign a band that is already an ongoing entity, then that's a whole different deal
.

 

 

This is a little thing on 3 dog night http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Dog_Night

 

 

It is a whole different deal,, but it may not be the deal you think it is. Unless every member has his own agreement ,, and the label signs the band ,, it can leave the members high and dry when it comes to their rights. I dont pretend to know all the ins and outs of this, but I know business and I know about lawyers. The record company has a lot of bargining power with a band that is unsigned.

 

Its easy to cull out guys or make not equal to the major talent in a band, as the deal is getting put together.

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It is a whole different deal,, but it may not be the deal you think it is. Unless every member has his own agreement ,, and the label signs the band ,, it can leave the members high and dry when it comes to their indivigual deal.

 

 

But that's where you're not getting it. A label isn't very likely at all to come up on a band that has been around for years and sign only the 3 front guys. Unless they specifically want to jettison the band and take the singers in another direction. But if they want the band they'll sign the band as an entity and leave the band's management to the details of who-gets-what within the band. The label doesn't want to be in the middle of disagreements should the band decide they want a new bass player.

 

In this case this band has always been a band. Like Grant said, it's the guys in the band who write the songs. It isn't Jimmy, Joe and John and Their Backing Band. Any label looking to sign them isn't likely to mess with it. Again, this isn't 1965 and these guys aren't The Monkees.

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