A&E » Arts

Spotlight on local music: Brother twang



Name: Brother Twang


Members: George Skoupas, Downtown Jay Brown, Heavy D Stembridge.


Pique: What's the origin of your name?

Brother Twang: We started off as Too Soon to Tell as we were just having fun playing covers. Everyone kept asking what our name was, we didn’t have one so we told them it was “too soon to tell” and the name stuck. We always knew that the name would change once we started original material. Brother Twang represents the brotherhood between band mates, and the twang refers to Jay’s vocal delivery at times. It was one of those things that was born during a recording session; the name came out of nowhere and it just works.


Pique: What are your musical backgrounds?

B.T.: We’ve all been playing in excess of 20 years and our musical tastes are extremely varied; from classical music, to electronica, to death metal fusion!


Hometowns: The Big Smoke and Steel Town.


Pique: What brought you to Whistler?

B.T.: The fresh and clean air primarily, George has family here also, and you can’t deny those powder days. You know, the old adage “we came for the winter, but stayed for the summer…”


Pique: When you aren’t on stage, where can people find you just hanging out?

B.T.: Either the dog beach or 7 th Heaven, or with our respective loved ones, or Heavy D’s personal favorite: the couch!


Pique: When did you form your band?

B.T.: 1.5 years ago.


Pique: What inspired you to make music together?

B.T.: It all started with the open mike jam nights that George started at the Longhorn. The Force was with us from then on.


Pique: How do you describe your music?

B.T.: Gunt-tastic!


Pique: Do you play covers, or original material?

B.T.: Both, but our focus is definitely on original music. For every original added to the set, one cover is dropped.


Pique: Describe a typical rehearsal…

B.T.: Out on the golf course, having a few beverages discussing how amazing we were last night. So far this seems to be working.


Pique: Hit shuffle on your iPod — what are the first three songs you come across?

B.T.: The Mob Goes Wild (Clutch), Camera Eye (Rush), Hockey Cards (Brother Twang), which is available on our four-song CD for just $5!


Pique: W hat are your favourite song(s) to perform together?

B.T.: Any of our originals (especially Hockey Cards as we’re going to submit that one for the Hockey Night in Canada contest), Folsom Prison Blues, Old Man, or It’s Still Rock & Roll to Me.


Pique: What/who are your musical influences?

B.T.: Band wise: Rush, Clutch, Faith No More, Iron Maiden, and so many more it would fill this whole page. Otherwise, we all have been influenced by various teachers and family members as music seems to run in our families’ veins.


Pique: If you have to pick one “theme song” for the band, what would it be?

G.S.: Hockey Cards.

D.S.: Without a Trace (as it’s about Whistler locals).

J.B.: Let’s Get Physical.


Pique: What song is requested most (that you secretly hate to perform)? B.T.: Wonderwall by Oasis hands down!


Pique: What’s your favourite venue in town, and why?

B.T.: That’s a very hard call. It’s a toss up between The FireRock and Merlin’s. We like the FireRock because the acoustics are incredible and they’re like family to us, and Merlin’s because of their awesome staff. Honourable mention goes to the PemHo because that crowd definitely knows how to party and it’s always a good time!


Pique: Have you had any embarrassing moments on stage?

B.T.: Jay loves to sing before the mic is turned on, but the best was when George’s zipper broke while we were playing at Buffalo Bill’s. Did I mention that he was going commando at the time…?


Pique: What musician (alive or dead) would you like to jam with?

B.T.: Rush, Kirk Hammett, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Hendrix, the list goes on…


Pique: Do you have any upcoming performances in town?

B.T.: We are incredibly stoked about playing at the Pemberton Festival Barn Dance (Sunday, July 27 th at 6 p.m.) but we play at least twice a week in Whistler, check the Pique’s listings for where and when!