The Rockhouse was the place to be last Saturday night as The Beach B’ys made their debut as a ten piece band. The demographic ranged from people in their roaring 20’s to middle aged party-goers and beyond. Synthetic flower leis were abundant, as were pastel and Hawaiian shirts.
The B’ys began as a five piece acoustic set. They got their start playing gigs at The Levee this past summer, and have since played at the Ship, opening for the Pathological Lovers. There was even a special Canada Day performance given at one of the band members family gatherings.
From those humble beginnings as a small, acoustically-backed a cappella group, the band has now grown to ten musicians, all from various other local bands. A super group, if you will.
The formation of the group can be credited to Ryan Kennedy of Smiley Ralph, which had previously included Beach Boys covers during their sets.
“I guess I was the first to ask the question of ‘who wants to do this’. I love the Beach Boys, I’ve wanted to cover them for a long time.” said Kennedy.
The band started with Kennedy, Dicky Strickland (The Long Distance Runners), Jordan Young (Cold River Choir), Andrew Wickens (The Troubletones) and Jeremy Rice (The Sellouts). All the guys provide vocals and seemed to enjoy wearing pastels.
“At first we thought, let’s see how this works out, and it seemed to go pretty well. We wanted to see how people reacted when we took it out of the living room, and they reacted positive.”
“From the beginning we meant to take it as far as we could.” added Andrew Wickens.
After the five-piece group gained momentum, a rhythm and horn section were added, complete with trumpet, harp, saxophone, flute, keys, and drums. Natasha Hartery (The New Zazou), Keith Vokey (The New Zazou), the mustachioed Jeff Foran, Ryan Taylor, and Alison Sheffield joined the band in these sections, upping the membership ante to ten.
The B’ys, typically clad in pastels and floral prints, did not disappoint in the wardrobe department last Saturday night at The Rockhouse. Someone had apparently torn a few buttons off Dicky Strickland’s Hawaiian shirt, giving it a plunging neckline almost down to his navel. Others were also showing off some considerable chest hair. The ladies of the group wore matching floral dresses and flowers in their hair.
They all looked ridiculously adorable.
Hartery was correct in crowning herself and Sheffield, “The two winners for best floral pattern.”
This was Sheffield’s, of the MUN School of Music, first show with a rock band at a club. She seemed a little nervous but Hartery lightened the mood backstage by playing tunes, like The Simpsons theme song, on her saxophone.
The Skinny Jims opened up the night playing 50’s inspired rock and roll. The band features Mick Davis and Elliot Dicks from the Novaks, with Brad Power of Kujo and Chris Kearsy of The Need. Towards the end of their set, the dance floor was hopping with girls of all ages jiving to the Jims’ version of Jailhouse Rock.
The Beach By’s went on around midnight and played classic hits including Surfin’ Safari, Barbara Ann, Help Me Rhonda, Good Virbrations, and Kokomo.
The Rockhouse was good and full by the time they went on. People were singing/screeching off tune along with the harmonies and the dance floor was packed.
Some people I spoke to who attended last Saturday’s Beach B’ys show said they preferred the band’s performance at the Ship, mainly because of the venue’s more intimate setting. The new 10 piece line-up couldn’t possibly fit on that little stage.
The Beach B’ys are again moving venues to Headquarters on December 10th, and performing with Bay Town Connection. They will have a video recording set up to document the show, so be sure to head down and show your support for the cameras.
All in all last Saturday night was jivin’.
That’s right, jivin’.