Umphrey s McGee

  • Name:Umphrey s McGee

  • Biography:
    A jam band coming out of the Midwest in the mid-'90s, Umphrey's McGee edged toward the Frank Zappa side of the improv rock scale, as opposed to the Grateful Dead/Allman Brothers Band direction espoused by many of their contemporaries, like the Big Wu.

    The members of Umphrey's McGee met at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN. The six bandmembers had been playing in various campus bands when they got together over spring break in 1998, naming themselves after an older relative of guitarist Brendan Bayliss. With the national jam band infrastructure already in place, the band quickly began disseminating their live shows and soon released their first album, Greatest Hits, Vol. 3. The fourth-generation jam band often included songs by Phish and moe. in their live sets, along with the usual selection of wacky covers.

    The sextet won a large following in the South Bend area. As bandmembers graduated, the group instated a more and more rigorous rehearsal schedule. Half of the band had degrees in music, so emphasis was placed on constant precision. The band religiously studied tapes of their performances in order to improve them. While their record sales never reached high levels, they used live recordings to pave the way for gigs in parts of the country they'd never been to before. A story circulates of the band selling out shows in Colorado before their first trip there due to the distribution of live CDs. In 1999, the band released a live recording, titled Songs for Older Women.

    In 2000, the band made the move from their native South Bend to the bustling metropolis of Chicago. From their new home base, the band went on two-week jaunts throughout the Midwest, occasionally hitting other markets and sharing the stage with a variety of musicians, including Dr. Didg (aka Graham Wiggins), the Chicago-based blues harmonica player Sugar Blue, Béla Fleck, Topaz, and many others. On New Year's Eve 2000, the band released their third album, another live disc, titled One Fat Sucka. ~ Jesse Jarnow, All Music Guide Written by Jesse Jarnow

  • Albums:
    Anchor Drops
    Local Band Does OK
    Songs For Older Women

  • Official Site:not available
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