The first time I heard my favorite Memphis band, Star & Micey, I wasn’t even in Memphis.
Home for me at the time was Charleston, SC, where I lived for about 11 months. I saw a link on facebook to download three free songs from their first Ardent Music release. I downloaded the trio song pack and took a listen.
The first song I heard entitled “So Much Pain” made me do a double take. “Wait, this band is from Memphis?” I checked the track in iTunes to make sure I hadn’t accidentally played another band’s song. I can’t explain how much I loved this song.
I loved the other two songs, but I couldn’t stop listening to “So Much Pain,” which features Luther Dickinson on slide guitar. Four months later I found myself back in Memphis trying to become a regular fixture at Ardent Studios. I met Josh Cosby, Nick Redmond and Geoff Smith and immediately found their music, which is fun, honest, quirky and serious at the same time, was nothing compared to guys themselves.
In the nicest and most accurate description possible, these guys are crazy……and funny!! I have always considered Josh the lead singer, even though Nick contributes his fair share of some of my favorites. Geoff, who is a fantastic bass player, completely rounds out the two leads with his harmonies. So this is the band: Josh, Nick and Geoff, right? Wrong. That’s about half, depending on what night you see the band perform.. Rounding out this already strong lineup are equally talented musicians such as, Adam Woodard on accordion, Jeremy Stanfill on drums and Jessie Munson on violin.
Flash forward a year to the closing night of Brandon Herrington’s first annual Fareveller Festival. Star & Micey are headlining a packed house at the Young Avenue Deli. I sometimes think it’s hard for a lot of musicians to watch another band as anything but a musician. This band is different. Within five minutes I forgot where I was, who I was with and what I looked like. I was jumping, dancing and singing along to every song. It was a fantastic show as it always is.
As usual, the band ended the show with the song “Cold Hard Truth,” where all the members leave the stage and descend upon the audience, standing on tables, chairs and bar stools, accompanied only by their acoustic instruments. This particular song features Jeremy Stanfill, one of my closest friends and favorite songwriters, on banjo and lead vocals. It was odd to hear that many people trying to sing along and stay quiet enough to hear the band at the same time. The energy was amazing, the vibe was kind, and I remember wishing that it didn’t have to end. It was night I will never forget and as always, “I just felt so grateful,” to have been part of the experience!!
Landon Moore plays bass and has been a fixture on the Memphis music scene for over a decade. He is currently doing studio work at Ardent and playing full time with blues rock guitarist Patrick Dodd. Also, in the spring he’ll be releasing an electronic record (not dubstep) with the guys from This Is Goodbye. The project is called Fast Planet and the record is called Jes.