Anybody with a band can give an interview. Anybody with a car can get lunch through a McDonald's drive-through. But it takes talent to do both at the same time.
But talent is something not in short supply for vocalist/drummer Pat Baker, who can transition between pick-up window and publicity window of opportunity as easily as he can play a great show with his band, Willis.
"I'll take two cheeseburgers with medium fries, please," he says, an arbitrary preface to his next statement: a summation of Willis' sound.
"The music is really reminiscent of the creative sounds of '70s rock 'n' roll," Baker said. "It's a little bit of jazz, a little bit of rockabilly, straight up rock with a bit of a psychedelic feel, too."
Willis plays originals as well as covers, drawing influences from a number of vintage sources ranging from The Grateful Dead to Steely Dan, Pink Floyd to Crosby, Stills and Nash. The band released a six-song self-titled CD on Family Dog Entertainment which includes original show staples like "Come Back Yesterday," "Drug Me Down," "Fall Alone" and "Walkabout."
Samples of Willis' music, plus pictures and a streaming video performance, can be found at www.willisband.com.
"It's a very moody type of music. It can be really exciting at times and very laid back at times. The music is for all different moods," he said.
Formed about a year and a half ago, the band is comprised of Baker, Hooper Stiles (keyboards and vocals), Tom Pryor (guitars and vocals), John Luttrell (bass and vocals) and Brock Henderson (guitars). All of the musicians knew each other through mutual friends before coming together to form their current collective.
"Tom Pryor, the guitarist, and I went to the same school. Tom and Hooper Stiles both played in a group before this a few years ago. John Luttrell was an acquaintance through several different friends of ours," Baker said, just before tossing a friendly "Thank you!" at the McDonald's pick-up window.
Willis will be performing tonight at Barley's Taproom and Pizzeria in the Old City.
Willis dishes up new
Published: Tue Oct 07, 2003 | Modified: Sat Aug 06, 2005 05:27 p.m.