Featured Loudini Artists:
Gene The Werewolf
Gene the Werewolf has never paid attention to trends. Nor has the Pittsburgh-based quintet been part of a scene or the hipster's band of choice. They are iconoclasts by virtue of their music, rock 'n' roll survivors in thrall to the genre's power and
energy. And they're damn good at it, even if they are a dying breed. "It's strange to feel like you are one of the last of your own kind," says Gene, the band's dynamic frontman and lead singer. Thus, "The Loner," Gene the Werewolf's third studio album.
The band, formed in 2007, is comprised of 5 native Pittsburghers. With self-released albums "Light Me
Up" and "Wicked Love" under their belts, as well as 2012's worldwide release of
"Rock 'n' Roll Animal" on Frontiers Records, the band is ready to deliver their knockout blow with "The Loner". In a perfect world it's music that should be blasting on car radios from Asbury Park to Hermosa Beach, on jukeboxes in dives and biker bars. Posters of the hirsute Gene and his band mates--guitarist Drew Donegan, bassist Tim Schultz, drummer Nick Revak and keyboard player Aaron Mediate--should be on the walls of kids from Seattle to South Beach. Put
Gene the Werewolf on stage at the Whisky A Go-Go on the Sunset Strip or The Troubadour in West Hollywood in 1989, and they'd kill. But times have changed.These guys don't have access to a time machine. The next best thing is an album like
"The Loner" that takes you to those halcyon days when rock 'n' roll was hip and cool and fearless. If you yearn for rock music that echoes Motley Crue, Alice Cooper and Guns 'N Roses, with dashes of Whitesnake and Winger in the mix, "The Loner" deserves your attention.
The album features 10 tracks of uniformly excellent quality. In a musical climate dominated by drip-feeding content, single-by-single, the band still takes great pride in making a conventional album. "We wrote and demoed close to 25 songs for the album, so there was a lot of variety and unique ideas being kicked around," Gene
says. Those ideas were fleshed out at Red Medicine Studios in Pittsburgh, where producer Sean McDonald has become one of Western Pennsylvania's most respected musical alchemists. Having worked with The Clarks, Jim Donovan
(formerly of Rusted Root) and many other of the best musicians in Pittsburgh,
McDonald helped the band reach its full potential. "It seems a cliche to say this, but Sean really was a sixth member of the band." Donegan says. "He worked as a songwriter, engineer and producer, elevating our craft to levels we didn't think were possible."
There are no duds on "The Loner." The first song, "The Walking Dead," is Gene's take
on a zombie apocalypse and features two dazzling guitar solos by Pittsburgh native Reb Beach, who currently performs with Whitesnake and Winger. The final track, "The Best I Can" showcases the honky-tonk piano of Randy Baumann of WDVE-FM and slide guitar by The Clarks' guitar maestro, Rob James. Sandwiched in between
are eight songs that will satisfy the most discriminating rock 'n' roll fan. And then there's Gene himself, who is merely the best rock 'n' roll singer too many people have never heard. He sings, he wails, he screams, he hits notes that haven't been
reached since Vince Neil was a pup. In a perfect world, he'd be a star, as would the band. But we all know the musical world is a fragile, fragmented and damaged place where stars are manufactured, not earned. Not that Gene the Werewolf cares about stardom. Give them a stage, let them play. That's all they want to do.
Gene - Vocals / Guitars / Piano
Nick - Drums
Drew - Guitar / Vocals
Aaron - Keyboards
Tim - Bass / Vocals
Nick - Drums
Drew - Guitar / Vocals
Aaron - Keyboards
Tim - Bass / Vocals
I wish I could start this off with a “I was raised in a very musical family.” Or even a “Music was the last thing on my family’s mind” kind of place. But, like most people, my family was somewhere in the middle. My dad went to school for musicology when he was younger, but he wasn’t looking to be a musician, he doesn’t want to write his own music. We’ve talked about it, it doesn’t interest him. My mom could carry a tune, but again, not looking to be up on the stage performing. I don’t have a romantic legacy to fall back on, nor do I have the charm of someone who comes from absolutely no background whatsoever. All I have are my guts and a good sense of rhythm.
I grew up in Long Island, New York and spent most of my childhood during the 90s. My parents moved us to a neighborhood they most certainly could not afford when I was three and we did our best to pretend that we belonged there for as long as we could. It left a bad taste in my mouth, but I didn’t have much of a choice. My sister was a handful, so I was left to my own devices most of the time. I found that keeping quiet kept me out of hot water. And it went on like that for a long while. The middle. Not rich, but not starving. Always almost, though. Nothing to rightfully complain about, but not much to really celebrate. It was maddening. Still is.
Music was something outside of everything. And the bands I clung to were the bands that couldn’t be clearly defined. Sublime was my first “I have to buy everything they put out” band. They were punk, but not. They were ska, but not. They were even kinda pop sometimes, but definitely not. And that’s now a mantra I live by: “I am not a genre.” When “Sublime Acoustic: Bradley Nowell and friends” came out, it became one of my favorite albums. Just a guy and his guitar, but it was beautiful. That album made me want to pick up a guitar and play music. That led into all kinds of bands: Ska bands, Singer-Songwriters, Classic rock, R&B, whatever They Might Be Giants would be called. All of it got listened to.
I went into theater for college, and it made me a better artist, but it’s not for me. I thought, “Hey I like theater and music, so why not do musical theater? It’s perfect!” But it wasn’t. And one day, over in Wisconsin, I was introduced to The Mountain Goats.
I hadn’t realized that you could write songs like that. Bradley Nowell is the reason I picked up a guitar; John Darnielle is the reason I started writing songs. So I wrote a whole bunch of stuff, shared it online a little bit, but never actually put it up anywhere, that was back in 2010. 2 years later, I had written enough to play a full honest-to-god set. I started making my way around the smaller café venues and also began connecting with people who, luckily for me, seemed to immediately get what I was going for.
Nastasia Green was the first to join me. She’s also a musical theater misfit who realized she doesn’t like musical theater. She’s one of my best friends and has been singing with me ever since. Sometimes you meet people, and you get a feeling that you’re meant to make music with them. Nastasia and I are meant to sing together. I worked with Keith Michael Pinault at a shitty server job on the upper west side of manhattan. I was looking around for a bassist one day and he told me he kind of played. I think he used the word “amateur”, but I wouldn’t. And he’s only been getting better and better with each new song or show. He always seems to know what kind of song I’m writing before I do. I met Hajnal Pivnick through a mutual friend and knew I wanted her to play with me on the first note. I’m a rag-tag kind of musician. I pride myself on being rough around the edges. Hajnal brings a sort of grace and sturdiness of core to the music and it takes every song to a whole different level. I met Max Maples through Hannah of Hannah Vs. The Many and also through Hajnal. He’s added so much backbone to my music and I can’t thank him enough for his willingness to jump in and swim.
I would say that my music is for the middle children of culture. The people who are constantly being told what’s cool and how they should think. These songs are for the people who take life on a person-by-person basis instead of lumping people into easily marketable groups, cliques, races, social classes, genders, whatever. This music is for anybody who feels pinned down by a thousand voices coming from all directions telling them they aren’t good enough for any of a million bullshit reasons. Fuck that.
Rachel B, originally from Traverse City, Michigan, studied Classical Voice at Interlochen Arts Academy, but always wanted to bend the notes and break the rules with her original music. She nurtured her sound at Berklee College of Music before dashing from academics to performance. After moving to Los Angeles, she began writing for TV & Film, while honing her artistry and performing on stages all over Southern California. When on a tour in 2014, Rachel fell in love with the city and people in Pittsburgh, PA. She relocated shortly after and decided to take her career into her own hands as a full-time Independent artist. After one year in Pittsburgh, Rachel B organically met friends that happened to be musicians and quickly turned into a band with ridiculous chemistry, creating Rachel B & The Boys.
You can find Rachel B performing on stages all over the country, showcasing her debut album “I’m The Boss.” The Click show reviewed the album as having “A sense of empowerment yet vulnerability which unapologetically convey the feelings and struggles of being any individual in today’s society.” Home business writes, “Renowned singer-songwriter Rachel B just launched her uplifting debut album, titled I’m The Boss, to help awaken the spirit in others to rise up and be a true leader in the business sphere.”
Rachel B draws much of her inspiration from the classics, such as Ella Fitzgerald, Minnie Riperton and Bill Withers. She combines these classic stylings with contemporary sounds and irresistible feel-good pop songs, to create a truly unique sound. Whether she’s singing about being a boss, or tickling the ivories on a charming love song, this natural born soulstress will captivate you with her memorable hooks, leaving you with feelings of empowerment and delight.
Beyond the stage, Rachel B has had her songs placed on ABC shows such as General Hospital and in various independent films. She was selected as the recipient of the prestigious Johnny Mercer Songwriting Award and Berklee’s Women’s Composer Award. Her magnetic stage presence led the young starlet to perform at venues across the country including Chicago Symphony Hall, Berklee Performance Center, South Park Amphitheater, and Flood City Music Festival.
Be sure to check Rachel B & The Boys out live at a show near you and let the songs tell the rest of the story