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Sometimes you have to play a long time just to sound like yourself.
And then sometimes…….
les Badguys are a pop/soul quartet from East End Toronto, a band dedicated to great musicianship and the craft of songwriting. They are a well schooled and well-honed team who has a sound that is both somehow familiar and new at the same time -- music without a best before date.
If you had to, you could take a little Stax sound, some Little Feat, a little Steely Dan, throw in some Elvis Costello with a dollop of Joe Jackson and you’d get pretty close.
The band consists of Giordan Postorino on guitar and vocals, Alan Zemaitis on keyboards, Jim O’Brien Jr. on Fender bass and lead vocals and Lucas Fredette (son of the renowned long-time Kim Mitchell bassist, Peter Fredette) on batterie.
They claim influences from the classic songwriting talents of such great writers as Porter/Hayes, Dan Penn, Lamont-Dozier-Holland, Lowell George and the overlooked funk composer, Thelonious Monk. And they take their playing influences from the ‘lifers’ like Chuck Rainey, Larry Carlton, Steve Gadd, The Funk Brothers, and all the players who laid down the entire lexicon for pop, soul and R&B.
O’Brien (Montreal) and Fredette (Ottawa) hooked up with Toronto boys Postorino and Zemaitis at Rosedale Heights School of the Arts, a prestigious performing arts high school in Toronto. All ‘first-chair’ players, they individually worked as sidemen and with a variety of bands from an early age. But in September 2008 they “actually got it together”, as they said, and formed les Badguys. “It was time.” They claim, “Too much admiration for each other’s playing not to work together.” They hope they’re not the only ones.
Over the years they have played with such notables (to name just a few) as:
-Craig Sharpe 2006 Canadian Idol Runner-Up (Postorino)
-Afro-Beat Master, Femi Abosede (O’Brien on tenor sax)
-Dinosaur Bones (Fredette)
-Martha & the Muffins (O’Brien)
-New York singer/songwriter Vaness Alegassi (Postorino, O’Brien)
-Roshin Rosh from Notes to Self (O’Brien)
-Jim Vivian of the Shuffle Demons (Zemaitis)
As singular talents, they are comfortable in any genre (as their degrees in music will attest) but together these guys as writers, players and performers are a modern day hit factory.
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