Ok so I have a pretty amazing band, this show would not be anywhere near as good if it wasn’t for these four guys!
Justin Stone is an old friend, he’s a drummer who plays around the traps with a few of our mutual friends and he’d played his drum at one of the Ink Pot Unplugged Variety Nights I used to run in the hills. He’s also extremely busy, so I’m incredibly thankful he can fit in our ridiculously long band practices between his studies, his work and his intense martial arts training. But he’s super handy to have around, for his energy, for his grooving beats and for his magic hands (he’s a physio so its super awesome when our backs are buggered!)
Chad Baker was the first member of the band, and this guy comes complete with all the accessories. He’s a carpenter by trade (at our last rehearsal he systematically fixed all the broken cupboards and chairs in my kitchen), he fire-twirls (because y’know it’s a fairly reasonable hobby), he’s a barista (and works in a chocolate place and can bring truffles to rehearsals) and he plays just about any instrument you can put in his hands. And guess what ladies, he’s single! He is playing guitar, kalimba and ukulele in the show. Potentially a Charango as well… its this funky little percussion harp from somewhere in South America. Imagine a ukulele and a mandolin made love… yep that’s it. But back to the point, Chad is such an incredible asset to the band, although he does repeat himself and get distracted by shiny things.
When I first met Robbie Hopkins I nicknamed him Cheshire Cat for his cheeky grin and fantastic taste in ponchos. Robbie is a long time Ukulele fan, which is why we get along so well. He is also an absolute champion who last minute joined the band and is currently learning bass just for this show. How awesome is that! Robbie brings a problem-solving attitude to the band, what do you expect from an engineering student hey! He is usually opinionated about how we can tweak and change the sound, but always flexible and willing to try something new. Robbie’s cheeky smile and funky dance moves always add a bit of fun to brand practice!
Last but certainly not least we have James Dean on key. Yep, that’s right THE James Dean! This guy is a massively talented visual artist (he’s had exhibitions at Espionage and recently had his work exhibited in the super hip Tunnels Exhibition) AND he is a sweet musician too! We met through an old chum of mine and got along famously from the beginning. James is probably one of the most patient people I’ve ever worked with! He also has gone way above and beyond what I’ve expected of any of my band members spending hours on end with me repeating songs until we either absolutely nail them or need to move on because we can’t do it again. James has done so much to support the development of the show and really helps to tie everything in the show together.
Now imagine these guys all in a room for 5 hours at a time! When we do all get together it is a huge amount of fun! I seriously could not do this show without any of them.