By Brian Marchetti
BAPA’s Porch Concert Series kicks off on Fri., May 12 with the Beverly Country Club Band leading the way with their own take on traditional and outlaw country classics.
The band, featuring local musicians who have maintained long time friendships since high school and college, formed two years ago. Their first show took place at St. John Fisher’s October Fest in 2021. Since then, they have played throughout the area, including a performance at last year’s Porch Concert series.
The sextet includes Morgan Gavin, drums, Brian Noonan, banjo, Jim Pirman, guitar, Dan McCabe, rhythm guitar, Chris Walsh, bass, and Justin Sconza, pedal steel guitar. All members handle vocal duties with harmonies throughout.
“We were all looking for an excuse to hang out and play music,” Morgan Gavin said, “and it just started to click.”
Each band member plays multiple instruments and has a variety of stylistic interests including punk, ska, jam bands, and blue grass. Their skill and multiple influences blend together to create a unique take on one of America’s original genres of music.
“It’s a mix of traditional country with a twist,” Gavin said. “We kind of alter some other songs to make them sound a bit more country.”
The bulk of their songs come from the outlaw tradition, featuring tracks from artists such as Townes Van Zandt, Willie Nelson, and George Strait. Their set list includes a super-fast version of White Freight Liner Blues, lots of shuffling drumbeats, and enough string pluckin’ to make your fingers bleed. Gavin himself has a favorite to play live.
“I love playing ‘On the Road Again’,” he said. “It’s fun. I’m having a blast with this stuff.”
In addition to their versions of country genre standards, the Beverly Country Club Band constantly works on their own material. Though they don’t have enough originals for a full setlist, a few will be performed at the May 12 show which will be performed on the lawn at Ridge Historical Society, 106th and Longwood Drive.
“We’ve got some new stuff that we’re looking forward to playing live,” Gavin said.
Swing by the Ridge Historical Society May 12, 6 to 9 p.m., to help BAPA kick off another season of supporting local musicians at the monthly Porch Concerts.