Yo, We be dB!

Greetings Friends!

Thanks for taking a minute to check out my new musical adventure, dB. Here's the story of how we got here:

It's May 2010 and I’m the stage manager at The River Worm Café at Strange~Creek Music Festival in Greenfield, MA. At this point, I had been writing music and performing in original bands for a decade and Strange~Creek was an annual opportunity for me to share what I had created with family, friends, and fans. Those were fun years.

But, as people move forward and life paths change, so does the music. For the first time in a very, very long time, I found myself without a band. Now, we hungry musicians know that if you can't fill a slot at a festival, It’ll get sucked up into the vacuum and you risk having to start on the bottom rung again. This would not do. So, I started brainstorming about what I could do to maintain my opportunity. Well, Phish was (and is still) my favorite band and, at the time, I had only heard of two Phish tribute bands nationally. No one was doing that kind of thing in New England and it seemed like a no-brainer to give it a go.

Man, playing in an original band is hard work. You’re aiming to capture lightning in a bottle and I was at it everyday writing music, booking shows, promoting myself, and trying to corral as many friends and fans to our shows as possible. Performing in a tribute band was foreign territory for me and I didn't have a lot of time to get a buzz going about my new idea, so there was no telling how well it would go over.

So, night-of-show, I get set up like I had done a thousand times before and we drop into the first tune, “Funky Bitch.” The very first notes sent a shockwave over the campground and, before the second verse was done, we had hippies unzipping their tents all doing the bird-dance on their way down to the stage. The crowd swelled beyond my line of sight and I remember thinking, “This is what I needed to do? All this time? Ok, let’s focus on this for a while.” The Phreaks were born.

It was never my dream to make a career in a tribute band. My intent was to show everyone that I could be a great performer by becoming the best damn Trey enthusiast out there and, eventually, get back to performing my own music. The Phreaks were the vessel to that destination. Never did I imagine that I would travel the country with Pink Talking Fish and that I would spend eight years of my life in tribute-band-land. And it’s been an amazing ride, one that will continue. But, I knew performing music I had written had been a joy unparalleled in my lifetime and, after much work had been done, there would come a time to enjoy that again.

That time is now. I have assembled a group of some of my very best friends each representing a different role they've played in my musical life over the years. One exciting new facet is that this is the first time I will be writing and arranging for horns! I have reworked a handful of my “greatest hits” for this group and I have a ton of fresh ideas coming together. Our debut album, “Unity” will feature a collection of these songs.

So, here we are: on the precipice of a new journey. I look forward to once again contributing to the artful human experience and to sharing what we create with you. Stay in touch, big things are happening!

Meet the Band

AJ Vallee - Percussion



Jody Ryan - Keyboards

       Uncle Billy Smokehouse

Sara Honeywell - Trombone

             Mother Ton

Troy Bennett - Saxophone

Thom Brennan - Trumpet