It's not every day that you find a band from your hometown that actually doesn't suck (assuming you're from middle America like myself), but last winter, I did just that. It was on a magically mundane evening at Bell's, (the brewery behind cult-fave citrus ale Oberon) that my friends and I stumbled upon Joe Hertler & the Rainbow Seekers, a band with members hailing from my dearest Kalamazoo, as well as from nearby Grand Rapids and Lansing, Michigan.
Their tunes are an electric, explosive, emotional blend of funk, folk, and rock, and their shows are as lively and colorful as you'd expect a band with "rainbow" in their name to be. They're from Michigan, they love Michigan, and I'm lucky to have seen them at several bars, breweries, and festivals around the state. Most recently, I ventured to Pig & Whiskey in Ferndale with someone special and had yet another magical time. I've talked about Joe Hertler in vlogs before, but I can't believe there's not a post dedicated to them yet. Since I've got a bit of a commute now, I've been spinning their debut On Being nonstop since the show, so looks like the time has come.
The song that probably hooked us all is Ego Loss on Grand River, a truly entrancing, ultra catchy, gem of lyrical goodness. Yeah, I went there. This video was shot in one take at a parade in East Lansing, Michigan, which makes it even more special to me.
We are lovers in a falling building / And the promise of a diamond wedding ring / We are artists with dirt in our hands
Carbon C14 is the most perfect folk-inspired love song. If I could wrap up all my teenage feelings and marry them with a Dylan record, I'm convinced it would sound something like this.
I just want to hear you / I just want to see you / I just want to feel you like I did when I was young / We were like giants, we were like giants, we were like giants on the earth for the first time
I was really upset to miss The Rainbow Seekers' most recent performance at Bell's Brewery, but luckily this beautiful performance of What it Feels Like to Drown was shot there that day.
The moment that she took my hand and said, "Surrender to the stars now, / Cause we're nothing but dust, my love" / This is what it feels like to drown
Best Friend is a recent obsession. There's no epic video to go along with this track, and that's okay. It's a masterpiece on it's own, and I highly recommend giving it a spin on a late night drive.
No telescope will see through / And I've got to find myself / I see you with my own face / Created by the day's grace / While we're worshipping ourselves / All along, we were worshipping ourselves
Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers are playing Royal Oak Music Theater on August 29th.
Will I see you there?