By Bobby Shiflett
I always love writing that first blog post to get the ball rolling. I get to stare at a white screen and try to think of something interesting to say. Be that as it may, I will start this one by saying Welcome! We are The Other Day and we are proud to be a band based in Birmingham, Alabama …and Huntsville …and Albertville.
In Birmingham the music scene has soared to prominence with a number of fantastic bands and venues suddenly appearing. For years, if we wanted a chance of seeing some great shows our only choice was “The Nick.” It has been called “Birmingham’s dirty little secret,” and “the CBGB of the South.” For decades it has been a sort of spooky oasis in a musical desert where unseemly things happen in the wee hours …but it has its charm. Then along came The Bottle Tree in 2006 which placed a premium on aesthetics. It was run by Merrilee Challiss and Brian Teasley, the drummer for “Man or Astro-man?” They understand “cool,” and that’s what The Bottletree came to epitomize. The Emmy award winning show,”We Have Signal” was done there and the establishment brought a number of excellent shows and contributed mightily to raising the Magic City’s musical profile. Another factor in Birmingham’s musical ascension can be attributed to Birmingham artists who did well on shows like “American Idol,” where Taylor Hicks and Ruben Studdard became household names. The world is also becoming aware of Alabama’s rich musical legacy thanks to artists like The Alabama Shakes, St. Paul and the Broken Bones and even Drive-by Truckers who have never been able to completely sever their Alabama roots. Most recently another of Birmingham’s own, Oteil Burbridge, who had already made his bones playing with The Allman Brothers & Aquarium Rescue Unit, has joined Dead and Company; the band that has risen from the ashes of The Grateful Dead.
Now days Birmingham has a thriving music scene with clubs like Iron City and Saturn; both of which have already hosted some memorable and even legendary shows. Saturn is Brian Teasley’s newest venue after the closing of the Bottletree in March of 2015. The newly restored Lyric Theater has just released its first roster of shows beginning January 2016, and it is already clear that this is going to be a first rate venue as well.
Some readers may be starting to wonder why we would start our first blog post bragging about the Alabama music scene instead of telling you all about ourselves and pushing our music on you. Is this just some sort of shameless name dropping session for SEO purposes? Well …no. If that were the case then we would have had to drop so many names: Sun Ra, Emmylou Harris, Lionel Richie, W.C. Handy, Lionel Hampton, Erskine Hawkins, Nat King Cole, & Cleveland Eaton… and so many other lights in our local firmament. We would have cited the amazing contributions our little part of the world has made to jazz & blues and also pointed proudly at Muscle Shoals. All kidding aside, The Other Day is a product of this fertile, burgeoning musical scene. Even though The Other Day is relatively new, the members of this band have been a part of this scene since way before there was a scene to be a part of. It’s in our DNA and our DNA is in this scene. We forge our music from the diverse elements from which it arises and even seek to add some other more “exotic” elements into the mix …hence our love for mingling bossa nova, samba and other more Latin elements into a musical milieu already rich in everything from rock and roll, blues, jazz, folk and country. It explains our eclectic attitude and why The Other Day still has a touch of twang mixed in with the Latin and Smooth Jazz-Retro Pop patina of our current batch of songs. The richness of our musical environment inspires and nourishes The Other Day –from the sci-fi/surf of Man or Astro-man?, the smokey smoothness of Nat King Cole, the sweet southern charm of Emmy Lou Harris and the lonesome wail of Brittany Howard– The Other Day embraces all of this and we can’t begin our own story without telling the story of what is around us and inspires us. ….So once again: Welcome! & Enjoy!