Looking for great music by a local Marquette band of familiar faces? Well this coming Friday, April 19, Planet Dastardly comprised of three Marquette students will be playing at Conway’s Bar on Wells Street.
Some of their major musical influences include Victor Wooten, Led Zeppelin, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and 88.9 FM radio Milwaukee. They described their flare in music to be a mixture of punk, reggae, rock, jam bands and jazz.
One of their songs is called “Whirlwind” which is kind of “a hard funk, a little loud, with some smooth jazz” said guitarist/vocalist, senior Todd Michalek.
He described another song of theirs called “Calypso Sun” as having “a Spanish/Latin vibe.” A different one of their songs, “A Gulf Coast Prince” was described as fun and “bouncy.”
Each one of the guys takes turns singing as well as all together which makes each song outstandingly different. They have a bunch of great voices, which makes for very unique harmonies.
Planet Dastardly primarily writes their own music, which, before they invested recently in a drum set, was mainly acoustic. The band members consist of a trio of Marquette seniors including Todd Michalek on guitar and vocals, Joe Genova on bass and vocals as well as Drew de Lutio on drums and vocals.
Drew played percussion in high school, as a freshman Todd played in a band and then mainly played solo, and Joe actually won two battles of the bands concerts in high school. Collectively they have about 24 years of musical experience.
Most recently they took second place at Battle of the Bands held in the Weasler Auditorium. They heard about it simply by word of mouth, and decided to participate because they thought they could do well even only after their fifth time playing. They sure were right.
Their first performance was last year at the Annex for a Diabetes Awareness fundraiser.
Although the band only got together about a year ago, completely by coincidence, they have a bright horizon ahead of them.
In addition to their gig at Conway’s this weekend, they will open for the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Speakeasy on Saturday, April, 26, and headline a fundraiser at the Milwaukee High School of the Arts on May 30. In the more distant future, A Planet Dastardly will be playing at Jigglefest, a free outdoor concert consisting of bands with current Marquette students and alumni, at Bradford Beach on September 30, 2008.
Each member feels a strong spiritual connection to the music. Todd even commented that he has “a passion for the way music should be played and that each of us has an influence on what the music should say.”
Music is the voice of the soul and theirs certainly speaks of their enthusiasm. Music comes from the heart and “it is an art form with everyone’s own style” said Todd. Additionally, music brings a sense of community to a group of people listening, as they share the same “highs and lows” as Todd put, it in the music.
A Planet Dastardly’s show starrs at 9:30 p.m. this Saturday at Conway’s Bar on Wells Street. There will be a $4 cover charge, and you must be 21 to enter.
They will be playing a mixture of their own creations as well as popular covers. When asked what music meant to him, Michalek said that it “boosts my day when the days get tough.”
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