Quick and Easy Boys head to the shed
Rock power trio to tear up Little Red Shed at Edgefield on July 28
Like any guitarist worth his or her salt, Jimmy Russell of The Quick and Easy Boys stole his best ideas from a saxophone player, namely bebop pioneer Charlie Parker.
'I've spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to play like Charlie Parker,' Russell says, adding with a slight chuckle: 'The Parker's well hidden but a big influence.'
Russell also lists Jimi Hendrix and jazz guitarist Grant Green among those who have influenced his style, which could be called frantic yet fluid. In other words, Russell brings to blues, honky-tonk, funk and rock the mentality of a hard-driving jazzer, which distinguishes his sound from the often-lumbering guitar sounds of other rock trios.
'What I really like about Jimi Hendrix and Grant Green and Charlie Parker is the feel that they all have,' Russell says. 'It's the way they express their emotions through the notes - it's not so much that I try to mimic their licks, it's more that I try to get the feeling.'
The Boys, who include Sean Badders on bass and Michael Goetz on drums, will be sharing their music with East County fans on Thursday, July 28, at the Little Red Shed at Edgefield. Expect a diverse crowd, Russell says, noting 'rocker, hippies and old hippies' like their sound.
Formed in Eugene in 2005, The Quick and Easy Boys made a name for themselves in their hometown before moving to Portland to build a bigger fan base.
'When we play in Portland, it usually turns into a high energy dance party,' Russell says.
Since 2008, they've recorded three albums, and you can see a video for their 2010 song 'Take Your Medicine' on YouTube. In 2009, they hit the road for their first national tour, and have played all over the country, from New York City to Los Angeles.
Trends come and go in pop music, but rock trios, from Hendrix to The Minutemen to Muse, always seem to stay in fashion, Russell notes.
'You all have to hold up your end of the playing,' he says. 'For me as a guitar player I try to play rhythm and lead together coherently and you try to make the parts make sense.'
There's also a more pragmatic reason to be in a power trio, he says.
'Power trios will always be around because the paychecks are easier,' he says with a chuckle.
What's not easier is understanding the mysterious origins of the band's catchphrase 'Yeah, bud!' which you'll hear from loyal fans after a song.
Russell gives a long-winded explanation of the phrase, noting it has something to do with the fact Subaru is the Japanese word for the Pleiades star cluster and some guy he knew drunkenly wrestled a tire in a ditch once.
Finally, he settles on something simpler (as long as you know Dionysus was the Greek god of wine and ecstasy).
'It's an expression of Dionysian joy,' Russell says.
If you go
WHO: The Quick and Easy Boys
WHEN: 6 p.m. Thursday, July 28
WHERE: Little Red Shed, McMenamins Edgefield, 2126 S.W. Halsey St., Troutdale
COST: Free, all ages
INFO: 503-669-8610, mcmenamins.com, thequickandeasyboys.com