Artist of the day: Greenhill
Scene veteran Steve Seachrist, above, has engineered dozens of local bands from his Riverside Heights home studio. His own band, Greenhill -- formerly Spooky Greenhill -- has been performing together in various lineups since the early part of the decade. The band rocks a dynamic mixture of garage rock, punk and folk pop.
Joined by T.J. King (bass), Marcos Ramos (guitar) and Jimmy Rice (drums), Seachrist and Greenhill will perform at 9 p.m. Saturday at New World Brewery, alongside the Boozers, for Rancid Polecat Gary Dizon's 40th birthday party. Tickets are $5.
After the jump, get Julie Garisto's full profile of Greenhill...
The Hill: Steve Seachrist, guitar and vocals; T.J. King, bass and vocals; Marcos Ramos, guitar and vocals; and Jimmy Rice, drums and vocals. Seachrist, the bandleader, founder and sound engineer behind dozens of local bands at his Riverside Heights home studio, answers questions.
Beginnings: “In 2001 my good friend T.J. King wanted to learn bass, and I offered to show him what little I knew. He was just a natural, and so I had to quickly find a drummer to round out the sounds we were making. I called Chris Trojnar, former member of November Foxtrot Whiskey, and he stayed with us for eight years. We became a band by default.”
Seachrist’s hall of fame: “So many bands have come through here I can’t remember them all. How about Pink Lincolns, Nailbiters, Unrequited Loves, November Foxtrot Whiskey, Pagan Saints, Gunburner, Rickets, Hippo, Alameda, Big Kitty, Flat Stanley, Geri X, Brahm Bones, The Boozers, My Little Trotsky and many more.”
On doing his thing: “I never thought I would have a band of my own. The happenstance with T.J. and Chris is what got me going on that idea. Aaron Lepley (November Foxtrot Whiskey) was also very supportive and he ended up playing with us for many years. I am grateful for the dedication of these guys. They have to leave their families to come over here and play my music. All I have to do is walk to the garage.”
Why the name change? “Aaron and Chris left at about the same time, so T.J. and I thought it would be a good opportunity to change the name. None of us were ever satisfied with our old name, which is my porn star alias — the first pet I had and the street I grew up on. We have thought of so many terrible names since then but had to settle on Greenhill because we are playing this Saturday (in celebration of Rancid Polecat Gary Dizon’s 40th birthday, with the Boozers).”
Neil Young covers and other influences: “We had a habit of playing at least one Neil Young song every show for many years. It was our musical common denominator. We learned about 30 of them. Aaron always played a lot like him anyway. Once, we played a whole set of Neil covers as 'Shakey Greendale.’ If you know Neil Young lore, you will understand that band name. Besides that, we generally just like a good, simple rock song. We try to mix up the keys and whatnot, but mostly we are simpletons, musically.”
Writing, creating: “There is very little collaboration. I am stuck with writing the songs for the most part. I don’t think that is necessarily my biggest strength in life, but someone has to do it and the other guys refuse. I’m not saying it’s a terrible chore. I get off on hearing my songs embellished by this band.”
Anything to say in honor of Gary Dizon for his 40th birthday? “Of course! Gary is the champion of local music as far as I know. Like anyone, he probably is not thrilled to be a 40-year-old local rock dude, but let me say that there is really nothing better. Please drink a toast to Gary on Saturday at the New World!”
Hear them: 9 p.m. Saturday at New World Brewery in Ybor City. $5.
-- Julie Garisto, tbt*