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For the melody makers section of Rocknworld we strive to find the best bands currently on the scene that stand out from the pack with a combination of a keen writing ability, superior musical talents and just plain good songs. This time around we take a look at a band that has not only been featured in past rocknworld specials, but has gained national exposure on VH1, FarmClub and recently had one of their songs featured on the hit WB series Dawson’s Creek. They’ve shared the stage with bands ranging from Hootie and the Blowfish to Slipknot. They also had the honor of being personally invited to open for the Goo Goo Dolls last New Year’s Eve at a sold out show at the Las Vegas House of Blues. While bands gain this kind of exposure everyday, very few do it without being signed to a major record label. What is more amazing is that this band hasn’t inked a deal with any label! 

The band in question is Epstein’s Mother from Las Vegas. These sin city rockers took their unusual name from the 70’s hit sitcom “Welcome Back Kotter” and provide listeners with a equally unusual brand of rock mixed with undercurrents of funk, folk and jazz that thus far has won over listeners across the country.  Rocknworld first discovered the magic of Epstein’s Mother in 1998 when they performed at a fundraiser for the Nichole Simpson foundation. They captured the crowds attention with their melodic music, the real show stopper came when they invited the audience up on stage to dance while the band performed a cover of “Brick House”. 

Epstein’s Mother are content traveling the road to stardom on their own terms, they refuse to compromise their musical integrity by jumping on the “latest thing” bandwagon, they are holding out for the “right” record deal which will allow them to bring their music to the masses. Refusing to take the first deal that came along, the band is in this for the long haul, they believe they have enough music in them to sustain a long career, and so far the music has lived up to the expectations often exceeding them. 

What you get when you listen to the band’s self produced and distributed debut “subtle” or see them live in concert, is a band that understands the fundamentals of what put rock on the map, and made it the mainstay of popular culture. Frontman Shawn Eiferman‘s charismatic vocals and acoustic guitar, really adds a depth to the music. Complemented by the Jazzy/Funk bass playing of Geoff Neuman and rock solid drumming of Chris Morrison, the band has a solidarity rarely found in bands today. With the recent addition of lead guitarist Chris “Brady”, the team is assembled and all of the elements have come together to create a perfect symmetry of sound. 

It is that sound that is their lasting testament and what should eventually propel them to the top of the charts. It might be easy to confuse them with middle of the road rockers like Matchbox Twenty after a casual listen but a more apt comparison would be the rockin’ blues sound of the Steve Miller Band. They share the same ability with Miller of bringing the crowds to their feet from the first note played. In fact, even people who wouldn’t normal dance find them selves compelled to get out on the dance floor and shake their groove thing. I have personally witnessed this phenomenon firsthand. Anyone who follows the music club scene knows booking agents have a habit of putting strange combinations of bands on a roster. Going to a recent Epstein’s Mother show in southern California, they shared the bill with a new style alternative-metal band, a psychedelic rock band and an old school metal outfit. Two songs into the Epstein’s Mother headlining set I noticed two of the members of the old school metal band out on the dance floor grooving to the music alongside the alt-metal members and psychedelic rockers. Few bands can cross the genre lines like that, but Epstein’s Mother has an almost magical universal appeal. 

Even for an old metalhead like myself, I’ve found myself seduced by the Epstein’s Mother sound. That being said, it was with a bit of awe and humility that I took the opportunity to speak with the members of Epstein’s Mother recently. 

RWN: You guys have been making some major waves lately, from your recent Viper Room showcase to landing the opening gig for the Goo Goo Dolls, what’s your secret to success? 

Geoff:  We believe in working hard.  I know that sounds like a typical answer but we love playing music so we do it as much as possible.  The band has been criticized because of the amount of gigs we play but we are a band and isn’t that what bands are supposed to do?
 

Continued
 

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