Monday, June 22, 2009

It's Brunch time!!!

Today's post goes back to the mid-1990's and features BRUNCH. No one has ever heard of this group before, not even in our hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. That's because Brunch never played a gig, never released any recordings and never even took a band photo.

Brunch was Jessica Skerry, vocals; Benjamin Daniels, bass; Toby, drums, and myself on guitar. We were all Cleveland State University students back in 1994. Ben and I were also members of Swank Motel, a locally popular swing band. Since Swank only played cover songs, Brunch was going to be an outlet for our original songs.

We rehearsed several times per week for almost a year, but somehow we never thought we were quite "ready" to play out, so we never booked a live show. Listening back to the tapes we made, I'm not quite sure what it is we were trying to perfect. It all sounds OK to me - at the very least, good enough for some drunks at a bar.

Two major events brought the band to a close, before we ever got off the ground. First, Toby graduated and then immediately left for Europe to further his musical studies. At the same time, Swank Motel had a crisis and needed a new singer; Jessica was the obvious choice.

Before that happened though, we took a 4-track recorder over to Jessica's basement in Shaker Heights and taped the 4 songs posted below. "Chico," "Chase Me With A Dead Fish" and "Jaded" is music that I wrote with Jessica writing the words and inventing the singing parts. "Hugo The Dharma Cat" was Ben and Jessica's creation. Note the intro borrowed from "Black Orpheus."

"Hugo" and "Dead Fish" were both later re-recorded by Swank Motel in a real recording studio. I'll be getting to those recordings in a future post.

That's the basic facts. Today Jessica sings in the Cleveland band Lounge Kitty. Last I heard, Benjamin was living in China, teaching and still playing music. Toby - I have no idea what he is up to. I'm so out of touch, I can't even remember his last name!!!

So...come and get your Brunch, finally. It might be old and moldy but that's too bad for you. Hey, if you don't like it, then go to McDonald's!!

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