They make our drinks, run our sound, teach our kids, ring us up for our takeout, serve our coffee and share bills with international rock stars. They are the face of the Denton music scene and the reason why our town gets written about. Here's a small sample of our many fine representatives and their stats.
Ryan Thomas Becker Years playing in bands: 15 Favorite moment: Jimmy Smith is the notoriously cranky soundbro at Dan's Silverleaf. He runs great sound (and, of course, Dan's is a fine establishment), but it can take a night or two for you to get the hang of his demeanor. My first encounter with Jimmy was like getting seared in the balls with a brand shaped like Don Rickles. The next time I played Dan's, I commented from the stage on how the stick up Jimmy's ass was in a good mood that night. Everyone in the room went silent for a moment, looked at Jimmy, and then guffawed all at once. We're pals now, but I still get a sense that one day he's gonna run me over when he sees me crossing the street. Instruments played: Guitar, keyboards, drums, mandolin, bass guitar, theremin, bicycle, bell set, voice Current job: Texas Woman's University library Bands: RTB2, Hares on the Mountain, The Satans of Soft Rock, The Treelines, Last Joke Favorite bands I've shared the stage with: Cracker, Grand Champeen, Leatherbag, Johann Wagner, The Hochimen, Slider Pines, Slobberbone, American Werewolf Academy, Little Grizzly, Centro-matic, [daryl], Jetscreamer (at an open mic), THe Backsliders, Chomp Chomp, The Theater Fire, Kickball...
Justin Collins Years in bands: 19 Favorite moment: Sessions at Electrical Audio and Keyclub Recording. Playing shows with Phillip Roebuck, Nina Nastasia, Charlie Parr, Leon Russell. Seven years of soldering at The Echo Lab. Instruments played: vocals, guitar, banjo, drums, tambourines, shakers, organ, piano, sheet metal, ball-peen and claw hammers, disc brake, Fun Machine Current jobs: House sound monkey for Hailey's Club. Owner/ engineer at Satisfactory Recording Company. Associate/assistant at The Echo Lab. Area drummist. Current bands: Burntsienna Trio. Old Snack. Hares on the Mountain. Tony Ferraro & the Satans of Soft Rock. Danny Rush & the Designated Drivers. Spitfire Tumbleweeds. Delmore Pilcrow. Favorite bands I've shared the stage with: Phillip Roebuck, Nina Nastasia, Charlie Parr, Early Lines, Nouns Group, Record Hop, Warren Jackson Hearne and the Merrie Murdre of Gloomadeers, Warren Jackson Hearne and Le Leek Electrique, The Baptist Generals, Leatherbag, Dust Congress, Scott H. Biram, Two Gallants, Mandarin, Dove Hunter, British Sea Power, Sean Hayes, David Dondero, The Silver Arrows, Jetscreamer, Stumptone, Dana Falconberry, Snarky Puppy, Darktown Strutters, Murder By Death, Tre Orsi, Will Johnson, Kinky Friedman, John Wesley Coleman III, Ralph White
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Warren Jackson Hearne Years in bands: 18 Favorite moments: First long tour in a school bus with The Gloomadeers in 2006. Instruments played: guitar, bass guitar, voice, clarinets (bass and contra-alto), tenor sax, drums, accordion, mandolin, banjo, etc. Current job: J&J's Pizza Current bands: Warren Jackson Hearne and Le Leek Electrique and Warren Jackson Hearne and the Merrie Murdre of Gloomadeers. Favorite bands I've shared a bill with: Reverend Glasseye, the Slow Poisoner, the Voodoo Organist, Billy Joe Shaver, the Thriftstore Cowboys, the Diamond Center, and just about every other band in Denton, TX. I know I've forgotten someone.
Scott Porter Years playing in bands: Roughly 15. Very roughly. Favorite moments: Record Hop recording with Steve Albini. Record Hop mini-tour with Octopus Project. Instrument played: Electric guitar Current job: Senior copywriter at FUNimation Entertainment. We do anime. Occasional weekend cook at Wildwood Inn, a little boutique hotel in Denton. Current bands: The Dead Hand, Spitfire Tumbleweeds Favorite bands I've shared a bill with: Mudhoney, Mike Watt, Octopus Project, The Sword
Grady Don Sandlin Years Playing in Bands: 17 Favorite moments: '97/'98 at the Plaza Theater in Carrollton, TX with my high school band Interstate Nine; '05 opening for Adrian Belew at Granada Theater with BAGG; '07 on the back porch of Dan's Silverleaf with Current Leaves (our last show, coincidentally); '09 opening for Centro-matic at Dan's Silverleaf (as a part of NX35) with RTB2; '09-'12 touring the Southwest and Southeast US with Boxcar Bandits; '12 at Outlaws and Legends Music Festival in Abilene, TX with Charlie Shafter, Matt Martindale and getting to sing "Can't You See" with Marshall Tucker Band. Instruments played: I play mostly drumkit/percussion. I like to sing. I play guitar around the house occasionally. Current job: Teaching private drum lessons and performing for a living. Current bands: RTB2/Last Joke, Boxcar Bandits, Charlie Shafter, The Treelines, Delmore Pilcrow Favorite bands I've shared a bill with: Eleven Hundred Springs, Centro-matic, Dr. Dog, Leatherbag/No Future, Telegraph Canyon, Junior Brown, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Burntsienna trio, Dana Falconberry, The Backsliders, The Blue Hit, Slobberbone and probably some others, who I can't think of now.
Petra Kelly Years playing in bands: Five Favorite moments: Opening multiple shows for Centro-matic. Being flown to Milwaukee by a stranger to play a backyard birthday party. Seeing my name printed on the back of an actual vinyl. Instruments played: Violin and vox Current jobs: Cafe worker at Banter in Denton and Spiral Diner in Oak Cliff. Current bands: Spooky Folk, Fox and the Bird, Hares on the Mountain, Jacob Metcalf Favorite bands I've shared a bill with: Centro-matic, The Low Anthem, Phosphorescent, The Baptist Generals
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Alex Maples Years in bands:23 Favorite moments: Touring the UK, even though the tour was chaotic Instruments played: Drums and percussion Current bands: Curvette, Paper Robot, Spitfire Tumbleweeds, The Killhawks, Paul Slavens Ensemble, and the Sonic Jamulator Ensemble Favorite bands I've shared a bill with: We shared a stage (not the same night) with Tortoise/The Sea and Cake/Cibo Matto/Lotus Crown/Spectrum/Electric Company. Or the time we played Buttstock and Blonde Redhead opened for us. Or opening for Royal Trux and low. Many, many more.
George Neal Years in bands: Little Grizzly, 1997-2004; the Slow Burners, 2007-2010; Hares on the Mountain 2010-present. Favorite moments: Opening for Royal Trux and calling out their worthless douchebag fans who all were wearing leather jackets in July. Watching the "Oh Don Piano!" talking cat video with Joanna Newsom at Rubber Gloves. She will not remember this, but I will treasure this memory forever. Making a duct tape Viking helmet in the van on tour with Little Grizzly and wearing it at Fred's Music Lounge in St. Louis while getting felt up by the incredibly drunk owner, Freddy Friction, on stage at a show we played with Two Cow Garage. Doing the photo shoot for the Slow Burners EP cover with Ryan Becker dressed as a Civil War general and me dressed as his horse standing in the middle of a field. Earlier that morning I offered Ryan veggie bacon and he got really excited because he said it looked like cartoon bacon. This was also while he was dressed as a general. Instruments: Really iffy acoustic guitar Current jobs: Art history instructor Current band: Hares on the Mountain Favorite bands I've played with: I'm lucky in that I get to play with my favorite bands all the time. I live in Denton and there are so many great ones that I'm truly spoiled. I've played with some good national acts in some really cool venues, but my favorite shows are the ones with local bands that I love. Long live Denton!
J. Paul Slavens Years playing in bands: Been playing in bands since I was about 16. Started in my barn in Dakota City with my prog rock band Onyx. Current bands: My own, where I make up songs based on people's song titles, The Travoltas with Salim Nourallah, and The Baptist Generals. Instruments played: keyboards, guitar and vocals, lead and backup. Current jobs: Radio host at KXT 91.7. Voice actor with Kim Dawson. Favorite moments: Playing Club Largo in L.A., making up songs on a bill with Zooey Deschanel and Doyle Bramhall II, with Justin Timberlake in attendance. Also, opening for Tears for Fears at the Starplex in Fair Park; opening for Was Not Was at Tommy's; opening for Meat Loaf at the West End; and meeting Adrian Belew when Ten Hands opened for the Bears at the West End.
Eric Pulido Years playing in bands: 10 Current band: Midlake Current job: Playing in Midlake, co-owner of Paschall Bar in Denton Instruments played: Guitar, keyboard and vocals Favorite moment: Headlining a sold out show at London's Roundhouse. Favorite band I've shared a bill with: The Flaming Lips