Caller Nine
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Caller Nine

Band Rock Pop


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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Caller Nine uses obvious influences to create original sound"

Reviewers love comparisons. We tend to judge an album on how well it stacks up against others in the artist's discography or in its wider musical genre. We dissect albums track by track, looking for an homage to Michael Jackson, perhaps, or references to underground cult favorites. We like to make up compound adjectives like Dylan-esque.

This is not entirely unreasonable. After all, artists and their works all have contexts. No one creates in a bubble. Similarly, no critic is completely objective. We bombard each song with a thousand others that we have experienced. I don't like it, but I do it too.
And I have to do it here. I have to say that Caller Nine sounds a lot like the Dave Matthews Band. I have to talk about the shades of Victor Wooten and Jason Mraz that find their way onto Caller Nine's new album. I have to mention the group's other influences, a sundry collection of musicians like John Mayer and Ben Harper, Tower of Power and Paul Simon, Sting and Jamiroquai.

But I have to say that Caller Nine is like other bands in order to communicate that it is not like other bands. The riffs, the grooves, the catchy pop sounds driving this young group's music may have been inspired by a number of different artists, but they come together in a refreshingly mature and surprisingly original sound.

Last spring, Jeremy Blanchard, Steve Bozzo, Chris Kelly, Tyler Smith and Brook Reeder formed a new band. The longtime friends and Nevada City natives had been playing together since 1998 in the 10-piece funk group, Full of Flava. The new band, Caller Nine, was smaller and tight. It fused the quintet's funk roots with elements of jazz, folk and top-40 pop. Just a few months later, in a marathon two-day session, the guys recorded a 12-track demo CD of original songs.

"We were given the advice that there should be one person during the recording process who would come up with the ideas and everyone else would just follow him," said Bozzo, the band's drummer. "But we are all very vocal about how we think things should be done." In the end, the product was very much a collaborative effort.
The self-titled album is strong. Any press for time in the studio is obscured by just how tight Caller Nine is. The band seems unhurried on songs like "Movin' On" and the six-minute "Wine of Life." The tunes slide along easily, finally building to a full-band crescendo. "Song for Summer" opens with the lonely sax of a noir detective film, then slips into bluesy tribute. Other tracks are infectious. "Ba da da," in particular, grabs the brain and just won't let go.

The band's ultimate success in the studio was, according to bassist Blanchard, not surprising. "The recordings were very live. We only played through it once or twice. But one of the things we all like about this band - and hopefully I can speak for everyone - is that we all respect each other, and we let everyone do their own thing. Someone will say, 'I want to do this.' And, more or less, we say 'OK, do that.'"

It is this respect that makes Caller Nine such a compelling live performance as well. "Each of these guys adds to the groove," explained Smith, who plays saxophone. "We have a good acoustic sound that fits nicely and can jive with a small venue. But we can also change it up, make it big, give it some more pop and get funky."

In a show last Saturday at Tower Records in Chico, the band ripped through 17 songs - including covers of tunes by Dave Matthews, Marvin Gaye, Buffalo Springfield and others. I found myself listening earnestly, drawn in by the band's music but also by the maturity and unselfishness of its members. It is a rare thing when an ensemble of young, individually talented musicians can come together and sync like this. It is, well, Dave Matthews-esque.

Kelly, who was born in Chico, plays guitar for the band and writes or co-writes many of their songs. He also stood in on lead vocals for the absent Reeder at Saturday's show. Kelly understands that comparisons to the Dave Matthews Band are inevitable right now. And, not surprisingly, he doesn't seem to mind. But, in the end, he hopes the music will speak for itself.

"We have a lot of potential for great stuff," Kelly said. "We love playing, but we don't want to be a band that needs an image of any sort. We don't want to represent anything other than our music."

Caller Nine will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Bidwell Perk, 664 E. First Ave.
- John Pattison, The Buzz

"Caller Nine"

My closest friends in the music industry always are quick to remind me that, "There are no true 'overnight sensations.' "
Bands that break through into mega-mainstream popularity often have spent years toiling in the trenches, staying up far too many nights to refine their sound to the point where enough people believe they're presentable.
The quintet that currently composes Davis-rooted Caller Nine may seem like babes, but if the group's debut CD is any indication, Caller Nine's journey through the musical mazes may yet yield big rewards.
Formed last year by longtime friends Jeremy Blanchard, Steve Bozzo, Chris Kelly, Tyler Smith and Brook Reeder, Caller Nine will endure being called the "Davis Matthews Band" over and over, before fully establishing its own identity. Backed by guitar, bass, vocals, drums, bass and saxophone, this project taps into the same universal groove that has propelled Dave and his pals into super-stardom.
Caller Nine has begun the process of putting down some roots in local clubs, and various other venues in the (916) and (530) area codes ... and I'm looking forward to catching the group's next appearance.
And to playing this CD over and over again.
Daivd Meyers, Davis Enterprise Music Critic
- David Meyers, Davis Enterprise

"Musicians are always on menu at Orphan Annie's in Stirling"

By Ellen Wilkowe, Daily Record - 11/12/04 - Posted from the Daily Record newsroom

... Long distance caller: Still adjusting to daylight saving time, Pubs and Clubs was operating on its malfunctioning internal clock and arrived too early on a recent Saturday night to catch live entertainment but early enough to catch members of New Brunswick-based Caller Nine engaged in a pre-show warm-up - we're talking even before the Check, 1, 2's that preface a show. The quintet mused about the latest e-mail from Michael Moore and other assorted politics, the drummer's commute from Sparta, all while feeding the jukebox with '80s tunes.

Almost a year ago the core members - Brook Reeder, Tyler Smith and Chris Kelly, hailing from Nevada City, a "little town in Northern California" - set out to the East Coast, destination Morristown, where they stayed with Folk Project President and family friend Mark Schaffer, who helped them get involved in the folk project and hooked them up with their first East Coast shows at the Minstrel Coffeehouse.

Open mike, open mind: Following their coastal trek, they plucked bassist Erik Larson at an open mike at Krogh's in Sparta and soon after added Edgar Diaz, a New Brunswick local, "immersed in the music scene" at another open mike at The Court Tavern in New Brunswick.

But Caller Nine, the name, was brainstormed on a whim, en route to a show in California.

"We had hashed out so many names but we were on our way to a show and we realized we had no name," said Reeder. "The radio was on and they said be caller 9 and Tyler said that's it."

Inspired by and often compared to Dave Mathews, Caller Nine draws its lyrics from free association, "anything that's on our mind," Reeder said. "Our common ground is that we all like Dave Mathews, Sting and Paul Simon," he said. Chris Kelly describes their genre as "acoustic pop/rock."

Sax and the suburbs: A soft medley of guitar and percussion introduced "Accidentally the Same," which was soon infused by Tyler Smith's alternating saxophone/flute combo and Reeder's Mathews-like vocals. Smith turned heads even before the start of the set, warming up his flute, and then later during the show, with striking solos on both the saxophone and flute.

Caller Nine was called back by audience members shouting such flattery as "awesome," "great" and "fantastic." What's a band to do? Give the people what they want.

... - Daily Record, Morris County, NJ


2004 Caller Nine released a new, studio-recorded demo of 3 original songs and one cover song

2003 Caller Nine released its self-produced acoustic album entitled, Another Night on My Own

2002 Caller Nine’s self-titled CD was released as their first full-length album in September. The album was recorded by Stephen Merryweather at Sunlight Studios in Nevada City, Ca.


Feeling a bit camera shy


The band began in Nevada City, California as a small acoustic act showcasing the dynamic songwriting of Chris Kelly and Brook Reeder. As the duo toured coffee houses throughout the state, they rounded out the core of their project with the addition of saxophonist Tyler Smith. Progressing even further, Caller Nine gradually integrated bass and drums into their music, performing both with a full band and as an acoustic trio.

Led by a “compelling live performance” as described in the Chico Enterprise Record, Caller Nine’s original sound began attracting growing crowds on college campuses as well as radio airplay on various stations. The band performed at Universities throughout California and found its own original song, Beautiful Girl, sandwiched between Christina Aguilara and R. Kelly as the number six most-requested song on radio kohl 89.3 out of Fremont.

In winter of 2004, Caller Nine relocated to the greater New York area and currently operates as a regional touring act performing for an increasing fan-base throughout the Mid-Atlantic States.

Caller Nine is fully equipped with a 16-channel mixer, amplifier, monitors, speakers, and microphones. The band is easily capable of filling large venues with a huge sound or producing a crisp, mellow sound in smaller venues. With a large repertoire of primarily original music, they can easily fill a three-hour set.