In a city where new bands pop up every week, you have to find a way to stand out — especially if you're a cover band.
But for the Bellevederes, finding a niche in the old-school music scene seemed almost effortless. Wanting a name representing their love for Baltimore, the group was inspired by the iconic Belevedere Hotel. With big instruments and bigger vocals, the Bellevederes hope to excite their audience while maintaining an authentic performance. The eleven members tell b that they "search '50s and '60s hidden soul gems for inspiration, homage and reinterpretation — songs that make us tap our toes and smile." The band's secret weapon? Their very own master of ceremonies to pump up the crowd during performances. The Bellevederes have not announced any shows for this year, but when they do you can check out their schedule at thebellevederes.com. This week, the group collectively talks to b about leftover pizza, mom jeans and more.
Worst pet peeve? People who will not dance – we call them shoegazers
What's on your iPod? Mulatu Astatke and the Ethiopiques, Astrud Gilberto, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Dawes
What song are you hating/loving right now? "Baby I Love You" by Aretha Franklin – a collective obsession
Last concert/gig you went to? Baltimore Afrobeat Society, even though some of our horn players were actually on stage
Your worst habit? Saying "your mom" after the end of every sentence
Trend that has exceeded its natural lifespan? AUTO-TUNE (notice we have it in all caps to emphasis how much we despise it)
Favorite band? How do you even choose? The Band ranks pretty high on the list.
Any guilty pleasures music-wise? "A Charlie Brown Christmas"
Last movie you liked/disliked? HATED "Black Swan," but we LOVE "The Cannonball Run"
Last video that made you snort with laughter? Jimmy Fallon doing "The Barry Gibb Talk Show." It's wet-your-pants funny.
TV shows you can't get enough of? "Tosh.0," "30 Rock," "The Daily Show," anything on YouTube
Favorite book you recently read? "I Love Rock 'n' Roll (Except When I Hate It)." [Author Brian Boone] speaks the truth, and the "rules of being in a band" at the end of the book are priceless.
Last great meal you had? Meatballs and spaghetti pizza from Joe Squared. Preferably cold at 2 a.m.
Food you hate? Mother's popcorn
Favorite place to get a drink? The Brewer's Art
Favorite and most loathed fashion statements? Well-tailored men's suits never go out of style. Ed Hardy puke couture has never been IN style. And we sincerely hope "mom jeans" don't make the comeback we're afraid of.
Best venue in town? Hands down, the Windup Space. It's a great place to see bands, art, movies and Russell the owner is our hero (and has a nice beard).
Favorite quote/saying? "Puts smiles on lips and dips in hips"
Favorite way to relax? Hanging with friends, listening to great music
Source of inspiration? Old hidden soul gems — the folks that never got famous but made music they love.
Best thing about Baltimore? That it's Smalltimore. It's a big city with a small town heart, and nobody takes themselves too seriously.
Members of the Bellevederes include: Sean Beier, 33, keyboard; Kelly Butcher, 29, vocalist; Tiffany DeFoe, 35, tenor saxophone; Denny Finnerin, 36, vocalist; Ryan Finnerin, 37, bass; Greg Hamilton, 33, trumpet; Rose Hammer, 29, baritone saxophone; Micah Huerta, 33, trombone; Justin Metzger, 36, master of ceremonies; Burke Sampson, 39, guitar; E.J. Shaull, 41, drums.
AS TOLD TO LAURA LEFAVOR, BCopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun