The Junebugs

Imagine if Neil Young and Janis Joplin had three love children, and those children grew up to like Folk Rock and Hip Hop. The Junebugs combine high-energy pop and rock with Pacific Northwest folksy goodness to create a genre-bending sound you can kick up your heels to.

 

The Junebugs originated on the Vancouver, BC circuit before migrating south to Portland, OR. There, guitarist Barrett picked up drummer Kyle Owen and bassist Nathaniel Daniel, hailing from impressive musical backgrounds. Covering everything from Tom Petty to TLC to Lorde, the eclectic taste of the trio ranges from turn-of-the-century Americana to modern Hip Hop, with a strong emphasis on vocal harmony. Their original tunes have a dreamy, sweet quality reminiscent of Neil Young and Iron & Wine, peppered with fiery banjo lines. There is something for everyone here.

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Portland’s The Junebugs know what it means to toil away at something. If ever there were an illogical profession to pursue, that line of work would be music – and this comes from someone deeply entrenched and in love with the field. Music is 100% passion driven. Day in and day out, the hours pass you by. All the while, you’re working hard because you’re dedicated to what you do, forever and always. “The Grind” captures the passion and drive of doing what you love, no matter what.

Consisting of singer/guitarist/banjoist Moses Barrett, Kyle Owen (drums) and Nathaniel Daniel (bass), The Junebugs are a folk-rock trio with eclectic taste, “dedicated to sweet tunes and good times.” Originally giving their own soulful swing to a ‘contemporary American Songbook,’ the group quickly transitioned to making their own songs. “The Grind” establishes the group’s cross between old and new, incorporating elements of folk, rock, jazz and soul into a powerful expression of persistence and perseverance.

The Grind – The Junebugs : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=19XELnKgsis&feature=youtu.be

“We wrote most of this tune in a Holiday Inn Express in Chehalis, Washington while doing a weekend of 5 hour shows at this casino,” reflects Moses Barrett. “You can still smoke in casinos in Washington, so all of our clothes smelled like old cigarette smoke, and you really only get a few people an hour sticking their heads in seeing what you are doing in-between pulling shift at the slot machines. It was a long, lonely few days on stage. And we just felt “Man, this is the grind.” So, we started to write a song about all of the empty, far flung bars and casinos we had played. It kind of just all fell out of us.”

He continues, “But then when you’re on that lonely stage you still want to put on a great show, because otherwise what are you even doing with your life? So, when we wrote the bridge a little later, we wanted to talk about pulling people into the room, kind of seducing them off of the street, which totally happens now and again. And that is how it all came together.”

“The Grind” speaks for itself: Why do we do what we do? Because. Because what? The answers vary by profession and individual, but for musicians, the answer is love. Music is eternal; it is evocative; it is in-the-moment, a high unlike anything in existence. Though we certainly feel the encumbered aspects of that endless struggle, “The Grind” leaves us with a certain satisfaction – a sense of pride in the hustle.

Sunday, January 28, 2018 - 11:00am to 11:40am
NAMM Yamaha Grand Plaza Stage