Maggi, Pierce And E.J. live in a time capsule. Three pilots and a dog. They leave pieces of their lives in lines of songs. They share their music with fans in the U.S, U.K. and Europe playing at colleges, festivals, listening rooms and clubs. Their live show is fiery, spontaneous and unforgettable. Their diverse mix of music borrows from many familiar sources, but combines into such a unique blend that can only be described as fabulous, freaky, frothy and fantastic! "One of the best unsigned bands in America" (Sun Sentinal-Miami). Voted "BEST LIVE BAND" in Philadelphia's Main Line Times People's Choice Awards November 2008.
MPE's latest original triple album (Silver) was recorded in Berlin and mixed in the U.S. with Grammy winners Ben Wisch and Phil Nicolo.
"Hugely eclectic folk-rockers, Maggi, Pierce And E.J. built a strong grassroots following through constant touring since the late '90s. Their 7 self-released CD's range from coffeehouse folk to rootsy rock & roll, country, jazz, pop, and alternative rock. MPE tie its freewheeling music together with smooth three-part harmonies and energetic concert performances in which all three members switch instruments at a dizzying pace.On a side note, Pierce and E.J. are former members of the groundbreaking hip-hop band, "The Goats" (Sony/Columbia). "-all music guide
"They're funny yet deep, they cut through, yet they're light hearted and their harmonies and instrument rotation really trips me out!"
MPE have a 17 minute short documentary of their two week, gasoline free, walking tour from Philly to D.C. "Whole Steps Toward Peace.-aka: Screw the Van," where they walked 218 miles in 16 days (with their dog, Pokey), instruments on backs and concerts most every night. (see 15 second video clip here and 2 min. at u tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55BvTObwX-E) It was chosen as a finalist in the Tribecca Film contest. See more info on 'Screw the Van' here: http://hubpages.com/hub/SCREW-THE-VAN
March 2009: MPE are featured on MiND TV. here is one of a number of segments that will appear over the year:Click on the link below, or copy paste it into your browser.
Links where you can view some ads which MPE's music was featured:
2007 – T-Mobile campaign in Hungary using the track ‘Michael’
View it here:
2007 – Panasonic campaign in Belgium using the track ‘Flame’ View it here:
2008-'Music of the Sea' (MPE's Silver triple) used on T-Mobile ad in Hungary
2008-'Flame' (MPE's Gold album) used in Spanish indie film, 'Radio Love' being shown in indie film fests around the world.
MPE's latest release, "Live Covers" features songs by such artists as Van Halen, David Bowie, Melanie, Yoko Ono and others.
Maggi, Pierce And E.J. have played and are scheduled to play such festivals as South Park Music Fest, CO. '06, Radical Rat Revue - Film Festival Showcase '06, Ladyfest '07, moe.down, Ithaca Grass Roots Festival, Musikfest(Bethlehem, PA),WERU FM's Full Circle Fair(Maine), WMNF's Tropical Heatwave (Tampa '04 and May '06), 4th Annual NorthEast Kingdom Music Fest (Aug 06) Riverhawk, FL (played in '05 and will return Nov '06), WRUW's Radio Fest (Cleveland), Gainesville Arts Fest, Glitterhouse Music Festival (Germany), High Land Jam Fest (summer 06), Sheep Music Fest (UK), Farmer Phil's (Wales), Stortford Music Fest (England), Fringe Festival (Edinburg, Scotland) and many many more...
They have shared the stage with Morphine, Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks, G-Love, Moe., Nancy Sinatra, Ike Willis (Zappa), Jeff Buckley, Saliva, Elbow, Jim Hightower, Laura Love, Jonatha Brooke, The Bobs, Eddie from Ohio, Moxy Fruvous and numerous others.
"Trying to pigeonhole a band's sound is often difficult, but in this case, impossible. Their Chinese fire-drill instrumentation, lush harmonies, unshakable melodies and seat of the pants spontaneity, create one helluva roller coaster ride of a live show!"
"Abba meets Zappa" "Fleetwood Mac meets the Pixies" "Ween meets Joni Mitchell" "Bette Midler meets Wilco" "Sonic Youth meets the Beatles" - these are but a few attempts to label what is truly the magic of Maggi, Pierce And E.J.
NEW RELEASE, 'KAHCHEE MOOCHEE' DUE OUT SEPT 11, 2008
New Release, 'Kahchee Moochee' due out Sept 11, 2008
Live Covers- May 2006
Silver-triple disc set released 2005
Landlady's Favorites(compilation of first 5 discs put together by their landlady)-released 2005
Blue/For-an album dedicated to the life and music of Jeff Buckley(all songs on this record written by MPE) released 2000
Listen to MPE on streaming radio to pandora.com
and Radio Paradise
Added to No Cover Magazine Compilation 2006.
Also added to Tunetank SXSW 2006 compilation.
Also added to Musselman Triathlon 2006 compilation.
Mr. Moon from the Gold was one of Peacedriven.com's Top 40 Favorite Songs.
Radio stations that have added or play Maggi, Pierce And E.J.'s latest silver release and 2004 Gold release:
WERU-Blue Hill, ME
XM-FM Sattelite radio
KJCC-San Jose, CA
WYCE-Grand Rapids, MI
WYSO-Yellow Springs, CO
KSVR-Mt. Vernon, WA
WMCO-New Concord, OH
Silver and Kahchee Moochee review/June 06 & Oct 08
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The very essence of Gruppo Sportivo, The Netherland's late-'70s ambassadors of power pop, has emerge...The very essence of Gruppo Sportivo, The Netherland's late-'70s ambassadors of power pop, has emerged in Philadelphia of all places. Maggi, Pierce and E.J. have without realizing it channeled the heart of that incredibly unique and super-talented band into three discs which they have titled Morgen, Mittag, and Nacht (German for morning, midday and night) and what discs they are. Borrowing from numerous genres, they fold influences in a power pop casing and feed it to you whole. Early Brit rock, folk, psych--- even the manic edges of the Beat Farmers and Frank Zappa are here for the digesting. But make no mistake, they don't copy. They create.
The discs start innocuously enough (morning is, after all, a time for reflection) and acoustic rules, albeit with an electric edge. Light single piano strokes lay a Satie-like motif over early Simon-and-Garfunkel-like acoustic guitar in the opener, Whale Song, and the result is ethereal and hauntingly beautiful, a perfect opening theme. Maggi has an intriguing voice and Michael showcases it to perfection. A simple, lighthearted folk song, it doesn't seem like much, but it is and that slight waver and her unassuming delivery is really quite disarming. Bare Naked Ladies could have placed Melt Away on one of their earliest works and you wouldn't blink an eye, it's that good, hook and all, with harmonies straight out of early '60s Fleetwoods, to great effect. Maggi and her slight waver return in Castle Walls and you begin to realize that that voice is really something oddly special. A great acoustic underbelly carries Lies Behind the Sun way over the top and the break sounds a little Amon Duul II with a touch of Popol Vuh for effect. Big Falls, WI takes the lightness of the earlier Michael a step further and allows all three to intertwine voices, which they do quite nicely. Light pop gives way to rock when E.J. takes the beat up a notch and then production kicks in, ending with jazzy repetitions of "Do you think the world's a funny place?/We've almost filled up every space". Gruppo Sportivo would be proud.
Disc two rocks a little harder. It is, after all, midday and the sun is high in the sky. Kennison kicks it off with pure rhythm guitar-driven power pop, Pierce throwing in primo over-amped guitar licks on top of crunching rhythm worthy of the best. They even plagiarize The Who's He's a Boy at the last second, only here it's You're a Girl. The jazzy side of Gruppo Sportivo surfaces with flying colors in Music of the Sea, light acoustic Tighten Up guitar riffs in swing vein giving the bass a perfect reason to dance. Throw in perfecto sax from guest Jim Hoke, DJ duties from 1 Take Willie and primo rap by Maxx from Hack Tao and stick a fork in it. Step right into another Gruppo Sportivo moment next, A Moment echoing the best of what they had to offer in the late '70s. Snowed In With You draws a bit from early '70s Zappa, especially the extended jam in the middle which would have fit in any Winterland or Fillmore-type venue available at the time, light show and all. If you like psych, this is killer! Sea of Green is one of those short but enjoyable pop tracks and while nothing overpowering, it makes its point. Late '60s garage lives in possibly this disc's most impressive track as it echoes a bit of Love's classic Signed D.C. (thanks to the spacey harmonica), with a break worthy of early Widespread Panic. For Brit fans, there is even a hint of East of Eden here. Disc two ends with a simple pop tune about a scarf worn on the Rosie O'Donnell Show [The Scarf (David's Riff)]— a bonus not listed on the disc or jacket, ending with humorous prologue and epilogue phone message supplied by Maggi's mom(?).
Disc three, Nacht, slips into a kind of frenetic metal-pop sensitivity, crunching rhythms taking over on the Ramones-like opener, Yipee-i-a. Mutant reverb drives the rhythm into the skull like nails when played loud and if you've heard Hoodoo Gurus at their loudest and most manic, you get the idea. Hard rock rhythm guitar bangs out One Hand, a gritty and raunchy killer track with head-vibrating break. Supposed Indian (or should I say Native American) rhythms preface Pocahontas, Illinois and slide right into a slightly psychedelic/power pop mix which should have psych fans beside themselves. I mean, what a guitar break! Whew! Fade in drums, out. The dark side of psych rules InSeine and for once production dominates. Layered vocals and instrumental tracks take you to an as yet unvisited MPE world of depth and more depth. Superb. String of Pearls is pure shock therapy, beginning with slash/punk nastiness and suddenly interrupted by the soft, floating (and perfect, I might add) voice of Maggi. Don't listen standing up. It makes you dizzy. When you adjust to the beautifully crafted melody that follows, you slowly realize that you are trapped inside Maggi's world of desolation. Deep breath. If Country Dick ever sang for Zappa, it might have ended in something like 706, which sets itself up from the first line: "Why do you think I'm the devil." By closing time, the music degenerates into a cacophony of electronics, voices and rhythms. A fitting end to it all.
Should you buy this? If you like pop, psychedelic and power-pop, absolutely. Maggi, Pierce & E.J. have pulled off the quintessential musical coup here, taking us from morning to the depths of night in three discs--- from Heaven to Hell, if you will. Is it good? It is astoundingly good. Musical styles and production techniques are all over the map which makes this pure musical adventure. Of course, if your idea of such is more like the safe mediocrity of Superstar X, you may want to pass. This is not—I repeat, not—safe. What it is is addicting and guess what? There are numerous other discs to feed that craving. I'm thinking maybe Play Their Landlady's Favorites next, if it's not already out of print. If not, I'll take my chances with any and all of the remaining six. Superstar X will just have to wait.
You interested? Check out their website. In the meantime, don't bother me. Listener at work.
Hot damn! It took these guys three years to get there, but here it is—another great Maggi, Pierce and E.J. album and oh, man, is it great to hear. If you don't know about these guys, it's time you did. They are one of Philadelphia's best kept secrets and somehow (I seriously don't know how) remain so. I mean, these guys drip talent like sweat on a hot humid day in D.C. (and if you've ever been in D.C. in late summer, you know what I mean).
Not since the incredibly overlooked and underrated Gruppo Sportivo have I been so in love with a band. Like GS, they're all over the map musically, but that's a good thing. It's adventure! See, they do everything so well, style barely matters. Take what's in the grooves here, for instance. The fade-in on Around the World, percussive thumps bleeding into keyboards bleeding into violin bleeding into acoustic rhythm guitar and Maggi's melodic and unique voice, is magnificent. A great light rocker, it puts together the elements which captures the heart. Everything clicks, right down to the Beatlesque wo-ow-wo-ow-wo and ethereal violin break. And those harmonies—man, these guys blend like you can't believe. More great MPE harmonies on Brass Bowl, a downright great song with an outstanding melody and feel. Doesn't hurt to have that folk rock harmonica in there, either. They lighten it up with Rong Song, a tune which would be a ditty if it wasn't so damn good. Don't like light ditties? Helen, Chatahoochee might just change your mind, ukuleles light and airy beneath almost fifties variety show vocals and lyrics. I hated this kind of stuff when I was young, but MPE pulls it off with aplomb (and an apple, and a pear…). Slightly bluesy acoustic picking sets the tone for "Birds", though Maggi's vocals take it more toward the jazzy side of Americana. They rock it up a bit more on Y Don't U? and then slip back into the forties and fifties vocal group sound with a remake, Manhattan Transfer style, of a song they recorded a few years ago on their Gold album, that version more R&B/jazz with a touch of Ken Nordine jazz backup. They borrow from the great Jimmy Liggins next, rocking out with his excellent Drunk, fifties R&B primo magnifico (the guitar solo is exceptional). And if MPE doesn't have you by then, a topnotch remake of the Hoodoo Gurus' Like Wow-Wipeout should put the nail in the ol' coffin. Nothing like revisiting the best of the eighties now and again. It rocks! Maggi finishes the album with a short remembrance of September 11th, not really somber but heartfelt. It is obvious that she means it.
What I received was a bare-butt package—jewel case and CD—but the artwork on the CD is outstanding. A young high schooler from Maine drew it, one Zoe Reifsnyder, and it captures the tone of the album perfectly. Right on, Zoe!
Seriously, sports fans. Maggi, Pierce and E.J. have playing together since '95. They have eight other CDs under their belts—okay, one is a compilation, but that counts too—and every one of them is worth a listen. If you really love music, do yourself a favor and check them out. Their CDs are available for sampling at cdBaby. Here's your chance to discover music which is great and no one on your block has. Yet. Do it!
Silver CD review/UK
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The shimmering cardboard sleeve contains three distinct CDs. "Morgen" is deliciously folksy and inno...The shimmering cardboard sleeve contains three distinct CDs. "Morgen" is deliciously folksy and innocent, Mittag has an intelligent urbanite feel, somewhere out in LAMBCHOP land perhaps. "Nacht" collects the demons for a scrawling filthy rush of S&M cowboy songs with hardcore punky echoes and tinkles. The concept is just so bonkers that it really works. The production is top notch.
"Morgen! " has two ravishing songs: "Whale Song" and "Castle Walls" that would fit somewhere between Nina Nastasia and Piney Gir. The four others use variants of similarly subtle acoustic accompaniment and delicate harmony singing. All six are outstanding tunes. Maggi's voice is prominent and (you have to say it) seriously seductive. It's very intimate, personal and close up. "Big Falls WI" finishes with a relaxed minimal drum kit and astonishing variety in the lightest of arrangements.
I was totally captivated by the end of the "Morgen" CD. I had hardly noticed that "Big Falls WI" had picked up the tempo towards the end. So when Kennison came in a bit Fountains of Wayne with its electric guitars and adolescent pouting "Morgen" rushes off into something different. The last section of Kennison is a chorus from "You're a Boy" by the Who. It fits perfectly. And then, off it goes genre hopping through Latin jazz with rapping ("Music if the Sea") and all sorts, with the intellectual reach and playfulness of a YO LA TENGO jam session. Are there any instruments they don't play? "Snowed in with You" has the orchestrated feel of ZAPPA piece as the big guitar tendency breaks out of hiding. "Ezra's Stove" with it's lonely harmonica, Ellis-style violin and Maggi's soulful husky voice could be an old country tune. And then some great mandolin and it picks up into a barn dance for a verse, before going back to the mournful romance. Magic.
The hidden track comes in like Camper van Beethoven. "I knitted you a scarf. You wore it on TV. Matty taped the show for me." Straight faced, dumb and delectable.
"Nacht" is less obviously destined for the sweet trolley. The sexuality is more out in the open. There will be plenty who find the masturbation song lots of fun. "One Hand" comes in with a Chinese gong and proceeds with a pretty good translation of some heavyweight rock posturing. "Inseine" nods in the direction of Rock America's continuing fascination with classic Pink Floyd. "String of Pearls" has a visceral punked-over Polly Harvey approach (with some very agreeable rasping slide guitar) that turns into a twinkling acoustic episode of woodland reverie. Very odd. Final track 706 takes one last look at the world of Zappa complexity and collage and skates manically over a whole skid pan of oily devil references and scuttling noises.
Live & Silver review/Basel Switzerland
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Do you know this uncommon, but beloved feeling, that fate brought you to something you actually didn...Do you know this uncommon, but beloved feeling, that fate brought you to something you actually didn't want to deal with, but afterwards you're not only wiser, but . . . happier. That's how I felt stepping quite unknowingly into the waves of this charming trio, 'Maggi, Pierce and E.J.' Well...
I got enlightened. MPE's gig is a mixture of strangeness and much head and heart itching, even a little hardcore burst out, but so full of funniness, warmth, and overall, honesty. Simply beautiful and freeing. Funny bunch.
So it's X-Mas eve and I'm listening 'Silver' for 1000th time, not ever boring myself and writing these lines.
'Silver' is separated in three nice pieces: 'Morgen', 'Mittag' and 'Nacht', which means morning, noon and night in German. An idea they probably caught while recording in Berlin, Germany.
'Morgen' is pure salvation. So sweet and relieving, it actually shouldn't be described. The 'Whale Song' is a song meant to last forever in my life. Absolute relaxing, spending life and warmth. I remember a feeling of inner peace. Just so bitterly beautiful. 'Micheal' is a easy folkish tune, quite like a school song. Friendly and nice. 'Melt Away' is a song to walk and sing with. Lonely minds are made to carry on. Very pretty guitar lines at the end. My heart stopped at 'Castle Walls', the most depressing song. Mercilessly honest even there. Beautiful strings underline the gripping lyrics. So true that it hurts, and you scream voicelessly: "Darn, you got it!". 'Lies Behind The Sun' brings green nature into your ears, green fields of life itself. Great burst of the joy of being sometimes so godly happy. Bittersweet, life is good. 'Big Walls, WI' starts again easy, summerish and peaceful. A bit funky, a bit too easy? And suddenly it gets tense, demanding, asking. 'Morgen' ends sharp and you wonder why.
'Mittag' shocks right away, because it rocks right away. No time to relax. It gets weird now, many styles are mixed together. 'Kennison' is a real opener. Nicely rocking, the lyrics are a bit 'I've got a bike'. Fine melody line, great sing-a-long. 'Music Of The Sea' starts dangerously seducing. Plenty of funk and saxophone attack your legs and make them move. Even Hip-Hop finds its way on this one. 'A Moment' is somewhere in the 60's. Happy and lifting like a milkshake. 'Snowed In With You' smoothes and cools everything down like fresh snow. Nice, funked up story, and good solo, unusual fat chords. 'Sea Of Green' is a eye-twinker. Not cynic, but gentle. A bit drunk, but enough drunk to be funny. 'Ezra's Stove' gets a dusty wild west feeling. Slow and longing, sometimes in dreams, but longing. But 'Mittag' ends with a smile. There's a hidden track, well, it's more of a bonus track. Nothing to say about it. Listen and smile for yourself.
'Nacht' is night. That's it. Innocence lost. It's time you stand your ground. 'Yipee-I-A' blast the doors open. Pure R'N'R. Only balls and a big chainsaw. Understand? 'One Hand' crawls slow, deep and hard. The light is flickering in this one. Feels like apathy and party-time in the same moment. Nice, pulsing guitars. 'Pocahontas, Illinois' sounds quite british, but happily rocking. Fine singing here, well, not only here. 'InSeine' brings you the insanity of the streets. Dirty, gritty, the sound is everywhere. Or are you insane? Manic-depressions made as music. 'String Of Pearls', gosh, what a beginning. Chainsaw guitars and bulldozing drums support the burning vocals in your immolation. And then this aftermath...pretty serious. It shows what dwells behind the fury of a worried heart. '706' is the complete mindfuck, to use the topic word of the lyrics. Welcome to the smeary bottom. This is the realm of drunken sex. Wet and sweaty. And the tense atmosphere bursts one's head, and the pants too. No beauty, it gets really dangerous here. Perfectly dangerous. Your drunk without drinking. And you now how a full drunken night ends. Uncomfortable.
Well, what am I left too say, me who listens mostly to quite brutal and life quenching-drenching metal. Why am I bewitched by these sounds? The magic of this trio and their music lies in it's honesty. True stories of luck and the misfortune. Listen a 'day' in your style, match it up with your life. How many days start with 'Music Of The Sea', go 'Yipee-I-A' and ended 'Lies Behind The Sun''? How many days start 'Snowed In With You', crawled to 'One Hand' and crashed into 'Castle Walls'?
You know what I mean. Great music. Great bunch. Catch them or they catch you!
Live Review/Cleveland, OH
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"Their act defies description because their music defies classification. One minute they're coffee-h..."Their act defies description because their music defies classification. One minute they're coffee-house folkies, the next they're headbangers, and then they're covering Yoko Ono tunes. The one constant is their unbelievable three-part harmonies. The band changed instruments as easily as they changed styles, with all three getting a turn at drums, lead guitar and bass throughout the evening."
Silver CD/best picks 2 reviews
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Why have I not heard of this band before? If you have you’re probably read that they “Maggi, Pier...Why have I not heard of this band before?
If you have you’re probably read that they “Maggi, Pierce And E.J., live, breathe, eat, drink and fart music”; which makes me laugh.
I looked them up on CDBaby and found that they have several CDs, this being their sixth! The other are all named after colors as well (white, red, blue, gold, etc).
The Silver CD is really three CDs. They are labeled Morgen, Mittag, and Nacht (Morning, Midday, and Night in German). The Morgen or, Morning CD is your more mellow folky stuff. Mittag contains some more upbeat pop while Nacht simply rocks out. A great concept and a genius way of showing of your bands diversity. I’m mucho impressed!
Not to mention the fact that this band is expertly skilled at all the tempos, genres and styles and that they attempt.
The Morgen CD is filled with lovely folk songs. Generally just voice and guitar, but with a few other instruments as well. Maggi has one of those voices I could listen to all day. It almost sounds like she has a touch of a cold. A sound that is so appealing to me. Much like the voice of Anna-Lynne Williams from Trespassers William. “Big Falls, WI” is one highlight that has such a catchy sound you will be humming it long after you’ve turned off the stereo. This disc is part Paul Simon, part Joan Baez, and fully fantastic.
Which takes us to Mittag: We open with “Kennison” which is about as perfect a pop song as you could wish for.
“Music of the Sea” is also great. It has a bit of a 70s sound to it. Upbeat tempo, catchy melody and sweet harmonies.
The Nacht CD is a bit harder, but still has its soft moments. The range here is from punk to funk to new wave. “706” even has a late-Beatles sound to it…at least the first part.
I’d be hard pressed to even choose a disc that I like best let alone a best song, but I will say that I am partial to: “Michael”, “Kennison” “String of Pearls”…and “The Scarf Song” makes me smile every time.
This is a fantastic recording and I’d dare say there’s something for everyone here. For someone like me who likes many styles and genres, there’s a lot to love.
Posted on September 14, 2005
another silver review posted by
Archaeologist, journal editor, public speaker, skeptic, bookworm, geocacher, father of two. Currently blogging at Aardvarchaeology.
Thanks to smart web radio site Pandora.com, I've discovered an intriguing and incredibly good band: Maggi, Pierce & E.J. Steve Huey at Allmusic sums them up as "hugely eclectic folk-rockers", which is pretty near the mark. The band themselves suggest "Abba meets Zappa", "Fleetwood Mac meets the Pixies", "Ween meets Joni Mitchell", "Bette Midler meets Wilco" and "Sonic Youth meets the Beatles".
The trio is based in Philadelphia and has issued eight self-published albums since 1995. They still don't have a record deal, which, judging from the songs I've heard so far, must be intentional. The release I'm listening to now is their 2005 triple album, Silver, and I don't know where to begin to tell you, Dear Reader, how much it rules.
Maggi, Pierce & E.J. are two men (basso & tenor) and a woman. All of them write songs. In all kinds of styles. And they switch instruments among themselves between songs. And they sing three-part harmony. And much of their lyrics are excellent stand-alone poetry. And they score their own string arrangements. And the three discs of Silver sound like they might be from three different bands! I am, frankly, in awe of their musicianship.
The first disc is titled Morgen, (German for "morning"), and carries six soft folky songs with acoustic guitars, mandolin, piano and the sweetest singing. I'm really taken with the way MP&E harmonise, and particularly by Maggi's reedy soprano on her "Big Falls, WI".
Then you put on the second disc, Mittag (German for "mid-day"), and you're treated to "Kennison", a rousin' & rockin' power pop number about gender-bending. This disc also has the song that turned me on to the band in the first place, "Snowed In With You", which is a really druggy psych song with lots of Hendrixy guitar, but whose lyrics actually speak sweetly about how nice it would be to be snowed-in in a cabin with someone you love. The Nacht (German for "night") disc starts with a bawdy punk rocker with a raucous Maggi yelling about not remembering her bed-fellow's name, and goes on to a metal song about a depressed E.J. staying in bed all day and whacking off!? I haven't listened to all of Silver yet, but I'm sure looking forward to it. Judging from the liner notes, there's jazz and hip-hop there too, and a song with a tuba part.
Even if all I knew about MP&E was the music, I'd be really curious about them. But then there's the image they cultivate and the messages of album covers, liner notes and the web site. Silver has something that looks like a "Parental Advisory" sticker on the cover, but it actually says "Governmental Oppression Despised". Environmental concerns and gender issues keep popping up in their often humorous lyrics. And judging from the materials the band's made available (as a smoke screen?), they seem to live together in a ménage-à-trois household, keeping a dog. Pierce and E.J. look really gay at photo shoots, though there's nothing fey about their music, and Maggi has the heroin-chic looks and emaciated muscularity of a starving model. They're touring all the time, writing songs in Paris, recording in Berlin, posing for silly pics in Glasgow, playing several gigs a week at small venues. In the summer of 2006 they took a two-week walking tour of the 350 km from Philadelphia to Washington D.C., playing spontaneous gigs in the evenings, being covered on video much of the time to make a film, all in a bid for peace.
Maggi, Pierce & E.J. are musical virtuosi. The image I've formed of them is also that of social and political activists: they would fit excellently on a double bill with Roy Zimmerman. Or Fleetwood Mac. Or the Pixies. Or the Beatles. And nobody I know has ever heard of them!
Gold Review/Fall 04
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With unbridled creativity,-"common-law siblings" Maggi, Pierce And E.J. take you on a zany trip thro...With unbridled creativity,-"common-law siblings" Maggi, Pierce And E.J. take you on a zany trip through many styles of music with guitar, percussion, tuba, harmonica, accordion and more-even the dog has a part-all anchored with tight vocal harmonies. Only "anchored" is the wrong word 'cause this Pennsylvania-based trio is always moving. "Flame" has a '40s ballad feel, complete with muted trumpet. Just when you've settled into the groove, the next song is "Back," a bouncy folk-rock song that sounds like a lost track from a Lovin' Spoonful recording. There's folk-hip-hop on "Mr. Moon," a great song about peace. "The Coffee Song" is ostensibly about that wonderful brew but if you stand on your head and look at it sideways, it's about wanting someone. "Fate Train" is an alt-country meets Gospel number that careens like a runaway train with a couple of pauses to pick up passengers. You'll find a classic country feel on "Memphis.." "Kiss Me" is a sweet love song right out of the contemporary singer-songwriter mold but better. "Porch" pretty much sums it all up, describing a music making scene on the porch of the house they all share. The booklet features lyrics, playful photos and liner notes that say, "unauthorized duplication is probably something we can't control, but it tastes better bottled from the source." Amen. On a scorching summer day, pour this album over ice and pretty soon you and the dog will be dancing on the porch.
Gold Album Review-All Music Guide
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Not many people can honestly say that they went from playing with an alternative rap group to compri...Not many people can honestly say that they went from playing with an alternative rap group to comprising two-thirds of a folk-rock trio, but that's exactly what happened with Pierce and E.J. Both of them were part of Philadelphia's early-'90s hip-hop underground when they played with a promising but underexposed group called the Goats, and they maintained their sense of adventure after going on to form Maggi, Pierce & E.J. with singer Maggi. Anyone who is capable of making the transition from hip-hop to folk-rock so easily obviously has eclectic tastes -- how many musicians who were being compared to Public Enemy and Boogie Down Productions in 1992 were inspiring comparisons to Peter, Paul & Mary and the Mamas & the Papas a few years later? Not that Maggi, Pierce & E.J. are a carbon copy of any folk-oriented groups that were popular in the '60s; Maggi, Pierce & E.J. (The Gold Album) underscores the fact that they have quite a few tricks of their own. While folk-rock is the foundation of this 2004 release, the Philly trio acknowledges quite a few other styles of music; during the course of the album, Maggi, Pierce & E.J. incorporate everything from jazz ("Jaded," "Flame") to alternative country/No Depression ("Fate Train," "Memphis") to Indian raga ("Dagger"). And Pierce and EJ haven't totally forgotten their hip-hop past; MPE makes a few hip-hoppish moves on the funky "Mr. Moon." But for all its eclecticism, The Gold Album never sounds unfocused or confused; MPE know exactly what they are doing on this unpredictable, far-reaching CD.
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They've got harmonies that recall the Roches, a daffy sense of humor that reminds you of the Barenak...They've got harmonies that recall the Roches, a daffy sense of humor that reminds you of the Barenaked Ladies and a hipster drollness that echoes Beck. They're the Pennsylvania trio of Maggi, Pierce and E.J. and they call their anything goes sound "Down-home farm-city junk music." On their delightful new album, "Gold," Maggi, Pierce and E.J. strut their multi faceted stuff. They sound touching and tender as they sing about a lost love over sparse congas and guitars, "I close my eyes, my tears get in the way." They turn into swinging beatniks with the double entendre "Coffee Song" that features a honkin' sax and lines like "I like it best in the morning." Add some belching tubas, swirling Wurlitzer organs and some aching harmonies, and "Gold" is an album that should go gold.
Review of Blue/For Paris Magazine
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"Sharpened by a little hippie fairytale they form today MPE, for Maggi, Pierce And EJ express themse..."Sharpened by a little hippie fairytale they form today MPE, for Maggi, Pierce And EJ express themselves, on their fourth album "Hommage to the life and work of Jeff Buckley" The basic sound is often acoustic, jumpy, invoking early Everything But The Girl, on the English label Cherry Red, or The Sundays. Here the wooden guitars laugh with the latin percussion, while the voices of boys and girls intertwine like vines around the slender melodies. Then the guitars, clearly more severe and complicated, blow psychadelic black clouds over these pastoral vignettes: this makes one think of Throwing Muses or Cracker, for their happily eccentric sneakiness. It is by this succession of extreme emotions, by this sudden violent desire for sound and experience, by this lightness and liberty of intonation that the trio, without ever mentioning it, achieves in the end the most relevant hommage to Jeff Buckley."
Top 12 Picks for DIY artists & Comes w/a Smile #11 UK
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This Philadelphia-based trio calls themselves “Eclectric Rolk.” The artistic combo’s sweet male-fema...This Philadelphia-based trio calls themselves “Eclectric Rolk.” The artistic combo’s sweet male-female harmonies sing for the late Jeff Buckley, while melodies genre-hop between jazz, pop, rock and folk. “So tragic the magic that you can’t control / Shine on, so strong,” they sing on “Burning the Sun.” On the soulful, dark piano ballad “Butterfly,” written before the details of Buckley’s death were revealed, Maggi cries with a rich vibrato that sounds eerily like Mr. Buckley himself. The disc serves as a powerful testament to their late contemporary, with spontaneous melodies and inventive arrangements as colorful as an abstract oil painting.
Comes With A Smile#11 London/UK review:
On Blue Cd('For'): "It has a loping jazziness redolent of 'Court and Spark'. And you can't get better redolence than that. Guitars propel, and sometimes chime, and didgeridoos, banjos, a harp, a mandolin and a saw add texture, as do some lush vocal arrangements. I have fallen for this one big time. It sounds damn fine."
There is definitely NO typical setlist. Every show is different, depending on the crowd, the venue, etc...
shows are anywhere from 20 minutes to 3 hours.
Maggi, Pierce And E.J. play 97% original music. They have written over 250 songs together, so it's always a unique experience. The other 2% could be obscure songs by Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, Yoko Ono, Van Halen, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, Bjork, Schoolhouse Rock, Johnny Cash, Golden Smog and others...
Three new songs from their up and coming 'Live Covers' CD are featured in the audio section, along with 3 originals.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.