Electric Strawberry
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Electric Strawberry

Oakland, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012

Oakland, California, United States
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Alternative Rock




"Music Video Race Picks Up Speed"

Briana Gokay, an East Bay vocalist and songwriter, never imagined that her new band would perform for a huge crowd of scientists. But in August, Electric Strawberry, her four-member, Oakland-based rock group, will play a set at the Moscone Center in San Francisco during the American Chemical Society convention. It will be Electric Strawberry's biggest audience yet.

Electric Strawberry landed the performance after a chemistry student in Arkansas discovered the band's music video on YouTube and told his professor to hire the group. "That's insane. It's a huge gig," said Gokay. "That's the power of YouTube and online promotion."

The value of a marketable music video is a main draw of Music Video Race, an annual Bay Area competition and festival that matches local bands and filmmakers for the creation of new music videos in just 48 hours. Electric Strawberry is one of sixteen (mostly) local bands that filmed videos this past weekend as part of the race, which is now in its third year. The final music videos — covering a wide range of genres, including blues, funk, folk, and metal — will screen at a premiere party this weekend, which will also feature live performances.

After selling out the Rickshaw Stop in its first two years, the event will take over the Independent on Sunday. But Music Video Race is not only expanding in the Bay Area. For the first time, the hosts are bringing the competition to Austin (in September) and Los Angeles (in November), and organizers plan to add more cities soon. This year, roughly 150 filmmakers and bands applied to participate locally.

"If the talent is there, we think we should be there, too," said Tim Lillis, co-founder of Music Video Race. Lillis and co-founder Jacquelyn Marker both have backgrounds in film production and first discussed the idea for a video race several years ago, when they saw actor Michael Cera play bass in a band. That got them thinking about "music and film crossovers," he said.

At the time, Lillis was familiar with existing 48-hour film competitions where, he noted, sound problems often tarnish the final product. Since music videos feature pre-recorded songs, that major challenge is eliminated. "It frees up the filmmakers to be able to focus on the visuals," he said. And at Music Video Race, musicians don't have to worry about spending too much time or money on production — two obstacles new bands typically face when trying to shoot and edit videos.

Here's how it works. Participants meet at 7:30 p.m. on the Friday of the filmmaking weekend, at which point organizers pair each musical act with a filmmaker, giving them until Sunday at 8 p.m. to submit a final music video. Bands and filmmakers selected to participate pay $100 and $75, respectively, and at the premiere, organizers give out a number of prizes, including a $1,500 video gear rental package, a two-day recording retreat, a number of Vimeo PRO accounts, and more.

While musicians embrace the opportunity to make a video, filmmakers love the chance to work on creative gigs rather than typical corporate jobs, Lillis said. "There's a huge freelancer network of filmmakers here. ... And a lot of them want to do more music videos. But it's kind of hard to break into that."

"Music videos are sort of a filmmaker's playground," said Mimi Cave, a competition judge and video director with Partizan, a production company. Cave, who is based in the Bay Area, has worked with artists like tUnE-yArDs and Magic Man. "It's different than making a commercial or narrative film where you're stuck to a script or glued to a client," she said. "You can kind of go in any direction and that's really exciting."

And the tight deadlines are attractive to participants. "This is an opportunity for people who just want to get in and get out and make something," said Sierra Haager, a participant in last year's competition. "The panicked energy gets it all done. In the best case scenario, it leads to a lot of people saying yes to things that might be out of your comfort zone."

Haager, a former San Francisco resident, said she hopes to see Music Video Race eventually expand to Portland, where she now lives. "This is something that could easily be in any city of the Unites States where people move to be creative."

In a way, Haager is a perfect example of the competition's goal of fostering collaboration and networking. She met her husband, Alex Haager, also a musician, last June at the Music Video Race premiere party; both of them saw each other for the first time on screen. By December, they were married and living in Portland, where they now run an indie label called Breakup Records and play in a band together called Bed (which is competing in this year's race and performing live on Sunday).

"The vibe in the room of the screening is really magical," said Lillis. "It's a room full of creativity." - Sam Levin at East Bay Express

"Electric Strawberry Needs a Kick"

Electric Strawberry is turning to the public to help fund a debut album.

The members of East Bay indie rock group met on Craigslist and are now looking at popular crowdfunding site Kickstarter for assistance, hoping to raise $7000 to defray the cost.

"All four of us have been in bands before, but for one reason or another, have never gotten the opportunity to not only record professionally, but distribute an album via CD, vinyl, market it appropriately," they write on their campaign page. "As you probably know, this takes a lot of time and money, and as broke-ass musicians, we're usually short on both."

Besides making Electric Strawberry's dream a reality, there are incentives to donate. Premiums include copies of the album in your preferred format, merchandise galore, and, for high rollers, the opportunity to have the band cover a song of your choice and put it on YouTube.

Save the date: Electric Strawberry will perform at our free party at Hotel Utah on November 21. More details are coming soon. - NBC Bay Area

"Premiere: Electric Strawberry Releases Debut Full-Length"

San Francisco Bay Area “kinetic rock” band Electric Strawberry just released a debut full-length that they’ve decided to premiere with The Bay Bridged.

The self-titled album is funky, fun, and jammy. The kind of classic rock n’ roll that you can imagine spinning on your record player for hours without a worry or care. On the song “Sunny Days,” lead singer Briana Gokay embarks on this amazing vocal venture, showcasing her talent and ability. Not just any band, Electric Strawberry’s sound is tight and astounding, the kind of stuff that blends older and more modern music together–unique, but nostalgic.

Their track “Who,” however, breaks away from the rest of the album. It’s a ballad of sorts, that shows how far the band can stick to, and move from, the rock genre. It’s slow and enchanting, with Gokay’s voice taking on a more folky sound that is soothing; a beautifully knit duet, the song shows the band is about more than just jamming.

“Love”, the last track on the album, is the true definition of “electric”. Bryant Miguel, Emily Gunn, and Luke Start come together, blending melody and rhythm into something utterly amazing and the best possible conclusion. It’s a cacophony of undecipherable sound that is elegant and captivating. Guitars are screaming, the drums and bass come together in a heart-dropping way; it’s intense and transcending.

The album is available for free download through their BandCamp page. - Victor Valle at The Bay Bridged

"Electric Strawberry Celebrates Album Release at The Night Light"

Electric Strawberry had their first self-titled record release on Friday at The Night Light in Downtown Oakland, CA. This tiny venue was packed and full of energy from all three bands that night. Openers for Electric Strawberry were two other bands, Troubador and Bully West. These bands are all local to SF/The Bay Area and have an amazing stage presence.

The Night Lite is located in downtown Oakland right near Jack London Square which has an up and coming music and bar scene. Downtstairs is a full bar, and upstairs is a smaller bar with the stage. It has the ambiance of a nice large bar downstairs but in a smaller package with a great sound system.

Electric Strawberry describes themselves as a kinetic rock band with a love for 1960's rock. Some bands that have influenced them are Fleetwood Mac, The Beatles, Tame Impala and Bright Eyes. Lead singer Briana Gokay has the dynamic vocals of Florence Welch mixed with Grace Slick and an mind-blowing stage presence. Briana met guitarist Emily gun through craigslist and then via some social networking met bass guitarist Bryant Miguel in 2012 in addition to drummer Luke Stark.

My favorite songs from the album are Always Knew and Light of Day. Both songs have a great body moving energy to them and wonderful rich vocals from Gokay.

Recently the band was offered a residency at the Uptown, located in Oakland, CA. You can see them there on Wednesday nights. You can pick up a beautiful transparent LP at one of their shows or order it from them via their website. If you download it from bandcamp it in comes in MP3, FLAC and more.

You can check out Electric Strawberry at https://electricstrawberry.bandcamp.com/ - Karen Goldman at Don't Blink Media

"Electric Strawberry Secures Residency, Throws Release Party"

Electric Strawberry is one of the acts that has performed live at The City's free monthly showcases of local music (come to our next one this Thursday!).

Now the soulful Oakland rock quartet has a weekly Wednesday night residency for the next month at Uptown Nightclub starting tonight (May 21). The band is also getting ready to release a debut album and will celebrate with a release party at The Night Light (311 Broadway) on May 30.

Get acquainted with the band that Austin's Deli Magazine calls the "hypothetical love child shared between Ray La Montagne and Adele" by checking out a sampler of Electric Strawberry's album below: - Tamara Palmer at NBC Bay Area


Electric Strawberry - Self-Titled



Electric Strawberry has been a work in progress for over five years now; its early beginnings started with a culmination of songs written by lead singer Briana Gokay, whose vocals have been described by Austin's Deli Magazine as, “...steadfast and resonating, holding tangible wisps of folk, rock and blues influences...the hypothetical love child shared between Ray LaMontagne and Adele.� Gokay, along with guitarist Emily Gunn, bassist Bryant Miguel, and drummer Luke Stark, have combined their strengths to turn Gokay's acoustic songs into a full and powerful rock experience. Electric Strawberry has also written new material, and has an extensive repertoire of covers ranging from the '60's through today. From their rehearsal studio in Oakland, California, the band continually adds to their cover set list, while also writing songs that are a combination of electric energy, dramatic swells and lulls, and powerful female vocals.

The band launched a Kickstarter campaign in mid-2013 with the dream of publicly funding their debut album-- and they did. With nearly one hundred contributors behind them, they were able to record at the famous all-analog Tiny Telephone Studios in San Francisco in January 2014. Their self-titled debut album was released May 30th, 2014 with an epic party and performance at The Night Light in Oakland; the most appropriate place considering they mainly perform in their hometown and cities surrounding the San Francisco Bay Area. Notable performances include Oakland's First Friday, Sofar Sounds in San Francisco (an intimate, invite-only music event put on in secret locations around the world), and a month-long residency at The Uptown in Oakland.

Since their album release, they have gone on a Southern California tour, and competed in the highly regarded San Francisco Music Video Race, an exclusive competition that pairs musicians and Filmmakers together to create a music video in only 48 hours. Perhaps their most notable achievement so far has been their show for the American Chemical Society at San Francisco’s Moscone Center, which they were hired to play after a colleague of the ACS' president discovered them on YouTube. The show was a massive success, and the buzz from their many performances is growing every day.  

The band is currently writing new material for an EP they are aiming to release in February 2015, and making plans to go to Austin's famed South by Southwest music festival the following month. With their fantastic originals, extensive cover song repertoire, and their passionate, energetic stage performance, Electric Strawberry is destined to make a huge impact on the indie rock scene.

Band Members