Feathered Rabbit
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Feathered Rabbit

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Rock Blues Rock

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Feathered Rabbit, which went on directly before, plays a more nuanced rock. Their bass-heavy, low-slung sound is anchored by powerhouse female vocals; the vocalist steals the show with alto pipes, dance moves and attitude. She's the sort of vocalist that can ratchet a song up in intensity simply by increasing the volume of her voice. The command she has of her instrument means that Feathered Rabbit can have wide sweeps in emotion during songs. They employ this, creating emotive pieces that ebb and flow. They still can riff out, but they also have a lot of melodic interplay between the bass and two guitars. It's a solid band fronted by a woman who can belt it: you'll be singing and dancing along. What more do you want in a band? - OKSee


For roughly a year and a half Feathered Rabbit has been a major staple in the Oklahoma City music scene starting when half of the group broke off from the indie-folk outfit O'Fidelis back in 2010. Speaking to some the members of Feathered Rabbit about the transition they stated that they had a clear vision of where they wanted to go musically and it involved bringing on arguably the most dynamic vocalist in the Oklahoma City music scene in Morgan Hartman and honing in on a blues inspired type of neo-noir rock that nobody around these parts had really tapped into yet. And Feathered Rabbit is born. Fast forward a year and a half later and the hype behind the band has considerably died down while holing themselves up behind studio doors next to local producer Mack Hawkins (The Non). At times, the band has seemed frustrated that it has taken such a long time to release the record and we here at Auxilarate have definitely questioned whether this record would ever see the light of day. But, as the old adage goes: Good things come to those who wait.

While the debut EP from the band is a relatively short listen, clocking in at only 27 minutes, it's ultimately all they need to make one of the boldest opening statements from a local band in years. Beginning with the intro, vocalist Morgan Hartman croons over a shivering guitar riff that is reminiscent of vintage 1940's noir films. The imagery being projected likens itself to a temptress sipping on the evening's first grand marnier before she sets off into the chilly autumn night with lust and forbidden love in hand. The intro eventually crescendos into TV Speaks and thus the journey of hers begins. TV Speaks, while not the most rewarding track on the record, is undoubtedly the proper opener to give listeners their first taste of what Feathered Rabbit is all about. The track commences with drummer and co-producer Sam Welchel kicking into a contagious rhythm that ushers you out of the dream-like lull that the intro seduced you into. Over the drums, guitarists Kyle Mayfield and Isaiah Sharp court in the infectious fusion of blues and psychedelic rock the band is most notably known for. Thematically speaking, TV Speaks seems to be a bit of a diversion from the rest of the motif as the track lends this outward cry to wake humans up from the zombie-like state that the mass media has indelibly soothed them into. The war-cry for independent thinking can be heard as Hartman prophetically exclaims I see the trouble in the skies as the bones begin to rise. We're just pages in a book until we crumble to the ground. My TV speaks. It don't speak to me. Turn it off and set me free. While Feathered Rabbit doesn't come off as an overly political band, the statement being made here is admirable, if not inspiring.



The third track on the record, Mr. E unequivocally cements Hartman as the most unique vocalist and lyricist in local music today. But it's for reasons that echo a haunting sense of mood and stylish mysticism as she ever so gracefully tells the story of a man she found on a cocoa night. The song harkens back to previous themes found in the intro as Hartman is besieged by forbidden desire. Coupled with Hartman's elegant storytelling is the band behind her that allows the stories to be brought to life with their eccentrically bone chilling arrangements that could just as easily be the score to a classic horror film. This is where the band truly separates themselves from the pack as they interweave a unique sense of timeless influence paired with their insatiable love for psychedelic instrumentation.



As the record churns on with My Friend, The Grave and Blues On Blue Son it eventually ends up at the peak where Grizzly Bear is waiting. Leave it to the band that waited a year and half to finally give us a debut record to save the best track for last. Certainly a game changing track that should catapult this band from mid-level status into the upper echelons of the local scene. Grizzly Bear is a 6 minute escapade into the now familiar scenery that Feathered Rabbit has created with the previous five tracks. It's Alice In Wonderland in all her enchanted glory blended with neo-noir tendencies of the Rian Johnson film Brick. Hartman opens the track as she tells the seemingly metaphorical tale of stumbling up on a grizzly bear in the dark of winter and reconnecting with him (in the first verse) and her (in the subsequent verse) as if she'd been yearning to experience a certain connection with this figure like she had previously experienced at one point in her past. If Feathered Rabbit hadn't made a statement up until now, rest assured they just did with Grizzly Bear.

In conclusion, what Feathered Rabbit has managed to do with their self titled debut EP is seamlessly guide people through several shift changes as the band takes us on an odyssey through the mind of five humans that are paying sincere homage to the classic styles of the past while merging the present styl - Auxilarate


Feathered Rabbit have been bouncing around the Oklahoma circuit for a few years now, dropping sexy psych-blues bombs on unsuspecting crowds and carving their own little niche within a budding Oklahoma City music scene. Yet, until just a couple days ago, the talented five-piece had no recorded material to its name, relying instead on buzzy firsthand accounts of its imposing live presence in order to establish any sort of reputation. As anyone who’s seen them in the flesh can attest, the band’s unequivocal backbone is vocalist Morgan Hartman, whose sultry pipes possess the roguish confidence of Patti Smith delivered with a Corin Tucker-like bravado. And now we have Drunk Rabbit — a three-song collection of the band’s early recordings that touches on everything from 70s folk and bluegrass to psychedelia and lounge jazz. Of any song on the EP, Hartman’s presence is felt most during “Good God She’s Odd” — a steamy, carnal-blues slow burner that’s probably more closely aligned with the band’s live show than any of the three. Ultimately, though, the song and EP present to us the band’s unyielding promise and creativity — something that should only become more apparent with each subsequent release. - Music for USB Ports


If you like your music chilled with a bit of soulful vocals and haunting instrumentation then Feathered Rabbit is sure to satisfy that craving. It’s almost as if the five members were tabbed to write music to an old, classic horror movie and said fuck the movie, let’s make a record. From the opening drum groove and vocal sequence of TV Speaks, you definitely get a feeling that this isn’t the same monotonous music that’s graced the cities ears up until now (barring a few exceptions). It’s beyond refreshing. The five members seamlessly interweave thought provoking lyrics coupled with eerie, vintage, blues inspired music that could certainly provide a backdrop for a chilly autumn night. Feathered Rabbit has been crafting songs for nearly two years now and are finishing up their debut EP slated for an October release. We had the privilege to sit down with this band and get to know them a little. What we already knew though, was that this band is primed for bigger stages than Oklahoma can provide.

Check back later this month for a special Sound Session featuring brand new tracks off Feathered Rabbits’ upcoming EP!

Some of you guys have certainly been in your fair share of bands here in the local scene. What is it about the dynamic of this group of musicians that makes it seem like more of a fun band to be a part of?
Kyle Mayfield: It’s fun.
Isaiah Sharp: And we’ve started after already playing together for a long time so there wasn’t that sort of getting used to how everybody operates. So we were already pretty comfortable.
Kyle Mayfield: We already know our strong points and weaknesses. We all work extremely and casually well together. It’s kind of frightening. This band has been around about two years now. Just been crafting and taking our precious wonderful time.

How do you feel the dynamic of the band translates to your live show? You guys have a lot of energy on stage. Seem to mesh well together.
Kyle Mayfield: I think it’s mainly because of the time we’ve taken. Everyone is on the same page. It’s just how we take this band.
Morgan Hartman: We kind of just as a whole interact really well in general with each other. We all just have that understanding. Just a strange connection.
Sam Welchel: We’re always hanging out. When we play shows it’s like you get paid to hang out just like you usually do but you get to play music at a bar. Just get to hang out with friends and play. Even if it does just pay your bar tab.

In regards to the bands’ sound, you guys seem to pull a lot from old school blues and jazz mixed with an indie influence. What influenced the sound?
Isaiah Sharp: I just think the older stuff is all music we just really like. I know I grew up listening to a lot of it so from my end it just seems to happen naturally. It’s like once we write a song it just ends up sounding like that.
Kyle Mayfield: A lot of it, too, comes from Morgan’s style. We craft a lot of things around her style.

You guys are coming out with a new record this fall...
Sam Welchel: Yep, it’s an EP. It’ll be six songs.

You guys nailed down a release date yet?
Isaiah Sharp: Well, we’re nailing right now.
Kyle Mayfield: In the nailing process…
Holli Taylor: We’re being nailed…
Isaiah Sharp: Yeah, we’re looking at the middle of October right now.
Sam Welchel: Roundabout.
Isaiah Sharp: Yeah, we’re going to try to get it out in the middle of October and do a little week long mini tour right after it’s released.

As far as the dynamic of the record, the feel of it; what are you guys shooting for?
Morgan Hartman: This is our first one, so it’s kind of up in the air still, you know? It’s still being crafted, I think.
Kyle Mayfield: I feel like we have more space. It’s like getting inside our heads a bit more. I can definitely say that for sure.

What’s the writing process been like for the record? Is it Morgan and Sam that write the bulk of the music and then the other members come in and put their spin on it or is it something that’s huge collective effort?
Morgan Hartman: Sam has helped me write a few. Helped me write TV Speaks.
Sam Welchel: Yeah, usually Morgan will come up with an idea and she’ll sing it and at that time it was Kyle who would do stuff and then Isaiah started playing with them more so it became Alex, Kyle and Isaiah. That was everything on the demo. The new stuff is pretty much everybody and I’ll go in and try and muster up something.

Now do you guys have something out right now for people to listen to?
Morgan Hartman: We have the rough demo.
Sam Welchel: Yeah, just two songs; TV Speaks and Mr. E.
Isaiah Sharp: Which both of those will be on the EP just completely re-recorded. Those were live recordings just to have something out.



We’ve asked this question to other bands, but we feel it important to really get a pulse on what’s going on locally with music. Obviously the scene is shifting and growing. What do you guys see for the future and - Auxilarate.com


Local musicians are everywhere tonight
By Stephen Carradini
May 13th, 2011

Kite Flying Robot
I’m no fan of cloning, but only because it doesn’t actually do what I want it to do. When I say, “I wish I could clone myself,” I really mean that I wish I could replicate/duplicate myself. Bill Watterson, genius creator of Calvin and Hobbes, understood this and created some of the best strips of the best comic series ever about it (scroll down to the sixth strip).

The reason I need a replicator tonight is that there are five local concerts I want to attend tonight. I need duplicates.

The one I’m going to be hitting for sure is the one I’ve been looking forward to for weeks/months: Brine Webb and The Nghiems’ double-CD release show in Norman. I’ve been stuck on Webb’s gripping tunes for weeks now, and I’m thoroughly excited to see them played live. Also, he and The Nghiems are planning to accommodate Thunder fans by having The Nghiems play during halftime, and Webb play after the fourth quarter. As a pretty rabid Thunder fan, I’m stoked about this.

The one I’m most depressed about missing is Feathered Rabbit, Junebug Spade and The Gentle Art of Floating at Belle Isle Brewery. Both Feathered Rabbit and The Gentle Art of Floating are on my to-see list — the former because it’s a new Kyle Mayfield (O Fidelis, Junebug Spade, Larry Chin, everyone else in Oklahoma City) project, and the latter because they throw parties, not shows. Alas, I will have to wait yet again.

If the Webb show gets done early, I’ll traipse my way over to Opolis, where Kite Flying Robot, Chrome Pony and Guardant will be throwing an end-of-school dance party. I have been known to dance wildly at Opolis.

Before all this started getting crazy, I had planned on going seeing Ryan Lawson, Ali Harter and O Fidelis at Bad Granny’s Bazaar, as all three are OKS faves. If you like acoustic country/folk, this is your show; these are three of the best in the metro at it, and rare is the show where they all play together.

And I just heard that Anty Shanty, 318 Main Street in Norman, will be hosting Skating Polly, Luna Moth and Shitty/Awesome as part of Second Friday Art Walk. I still haven’t been to a show here yet, despite my desire. Must everyone play on the same night?!

As for non-local artists, Jamey Johnson will be stopping at Diamond Ballroom for those who are into straight-up country. It doesn’t get earthier than Johnson these days, so if that’s your bag, this is your gig. Red-dirt Austinite Brandon Jenkins will play Joy’s Palace, 300 E. Main Street in Norman, also as part of Art Walk. Finally, Avenged Sevenfold ,Three Days Grace and Bullet for My Valentine will be rocking faces off at Zoo Amphitheatre.

Saturday is less stacked, but still a difficult choice, as The City Lives’ final show is at The Conservatory; The Boom Bang, Copperheads and Purple Church make ears bleed at Opolis; and new band Bona Fide Villains (ex-Sweetwater) play Sauced.

Don’t ever let ‘em ever tell you this town had nothin’ for ya. - Oklahoma Gazette


Local musicians are everywhere tonight
By Stephen Carradini
May 13th, 2011

Kite Flying Robot
I’m no fan of cloning, but only because it doesn’t actually do what I want it to do. When I say, “I wish I could clone myself,” I really mean that I wish I could replicate/duplicate myself. Bill Watterson, genius creator of Calvin and Hobbes, understood this and created some of the best strips of the best comic series ever about it (scroll down to the sixth strip).

The reason I need a replicator tonight is that there are five local concerts I want to attend tonight. I need duplicates.

The one I’m going to be hitting for sure is the one I’ve been looking forward to for weeks/months: Brine Webb and The Nghiems’ double-CD release show in Norman. I’ve been stuck on Webb’s gripping tunes for weeks now, and I’m thoroughly excited to see them played live. Also, he and The Nghiems are planning to accommodate Thunder fans by having The Nghiems play during halftime, and Webb play after the fourth quarter. As a pretty rabid Thunder fan, I’m stoked about this.

The one I’m most depressed about missing is Feathered Rabbit, Junebug Spade and The Gentle Art of Floating at Belle Isle Brewery. Both Feathered Rabbit and The Gentle Art of Floating are on my to-see list — the former because it’s a new Kyle Mayfield (O Fidelis, Junebug Spade, Larry Chin, everyone else in Oklahoma City) project, and the latter because they throw parties, not shows. Alas, I will have to wait yet again.

If the Webb show gets done early, I’ll traipse my way over to Opolis, where Kite Flying Robot, Chrome Pony and Guardant will be throwing an end-of-school dance party. I have been known to dance wildly at Opolis.

Before all this started getting crazy, I had planned on going seeing Ryan Lawson, Ali Harter and O Fidelis at Bad Granny’s Bazaar, as all three are OKS faves. If you like acoustic country/folk, this is your show; these are three of the best in the metro at it, and rare is the show where they all play together.

And I just heard that Anty Shanty, 318 Main Street in Norman, will be hosting Skating Polly, Luna Moth and Shitty/Awesome as part of Second Friday Art Walk. I still haven’t been to a show here yet, despite my desire. Must everyone play on the same night?!

As for non-local artists, Jamey Johnson will be stopping at Diamond Ballroom for those who are into straight-up country. It doesn’t get earthier than Johnson these days, so if that’s your bag, this is your gig. Red-dirt Austinite Brandon Jenkins will play Joy’s Palace, 300 E. Main Street in Norman, also as part of Art Walk. Finally, Avenged Sevenfold ,Three Days Grace and Bullet for My Valentine will be rocking faces off at Zoo Amphitheatre.

Saturday is less stacked, but still a difficult choice, as The City Lives’ final show is at The Conservatory; The Boom Bang, Copperheads and Purple Church make ears bleed at Opolis; and new band Bona Fide Villains (ex-Sweetwater) play Sauced.

Don’t ever let ‘em ever tell you this town had nothin’ for ya. - Oklahoma Gazette


NORMAN — Feathered Rabbit’s Alex Coleman (bass) takes exception with anyone who would minimize what’s happening musically in the metro.

“We have a huge scene here,” he said. “Building the Oklahoma music scene is what drives my personal creative inspiration.”

Coleman, Morgan Hartman (lead vocals) and Isiah Sharp (guitar) were knocking down happy hour suds in a local watering hole and talking about their band’s place in what many consider a Sooner sonic renaissance. Kyle Mayfield (guitar) and Sam Welchel (drums) round out the rest of Feathered Rabbit and they’ve been playing out since Feb.

“We’re new,” Hartman said. “I started writing songs in 2009 and Kyle put some guitar down to them. We went dormant in 2010 but got the whole band together this year.”

Feathered Rabbit will be playing Norman shows at the Deli June 28 and the Hidden Castle June 30.

“I’ve never had so much fun in my life,” Hartman said. “And I’ve never felt more like I’m doing what I should be doing than now.”

The 20-something’s vocals have a blues chanteuse quality. Her passionately sensual vocals lend themselves to that genre along with roadhouse rock. Comparison to a young Bonnie Raitt wouldn’t be off-base. Hartman writes the outfit’s lyrics.

“I’ve drawn on stories that the women in my life; mother, grandmother and great-grandmother have told me,” she said. “One song is my interpretation of a poem from a book of poetry my grandfather wrote, taking his ideas and mixing them with my own.”

Heartbreak, infidelity and not being able to place blind faith in religion are among her lyrical themes. Hartman described a personal liberation she has experienced from writing songs that will appeal to many different kinds of people on a variety of levels. “It’s given me even more freedom to try new ideas that will be open to everyone,” she said.

Feathered Rabbit are not in the least pretentious about their art.

“We play dirty rock n roll,” Coleman said. “We sound like a 70’s rock band that has a singer from the 20’s or 30’s.”

There is a distinct retro tinge to their music that undoubtedly comes from parental record collections, State Fair concerts and exposure to classic rock radio.

“I’m from a small town so going to rock shows was always a big deal because there was a 2 or 3 hour trip and I’d have to find someone to drive me,” Sharp said. “Music my parents listened to, like lots of Country in the early 90’s has always been a part of my life.”

Feathered Rabbit are under no illusion that being a respected and valued part of the metro scene comes easily.

“We know it’s based on hard work,” Sharp said. “We’re consistently writing and at every practice we bring out new ideas, songs and push ourselves to be constantly better. Playing as many shows as we can is important so we’ll be noticed and we’re all 100% committed to the band.”

Although that smacks vaguely of a corporate mission statement, the sincerity behind the thoughts is unmistakable.

“People who come to our shows should be ready for passion,” Hartman said. “It’s very natural for us, it’s happening and we’re not pushing super hard but just letting the music take its course. People are responding well because we are giving so much and it’s nice.”

Although the band may have simpatico mucho that doesn’t mean they agree on everything.

“They never want to listen to Joan Baez in the car,” Hartman said. “She’s one of my favorites but must be too old school and traditional for the guys.”

Feathered Rabbit is working on an EP with songs their fans will recognize from live performances.

“We left recording to come here today,” Hartman said. “It’s exciting because we’re still writing tunes and want to get it out to people.”

Although they occasionally toss in a Zombies or Yeah Yeah Yeahs cover, they’re not enthusiastic about copying other combo’s material.

“We want people to like us for our original songs,” Sharp said. “And we’re much more into writing our own stuff than figuring out other people’s songs.” - Norman Transcript


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

If you like your music chilled with a bit of soulful vocals and haunting instrumentation then Feathered Rabbit is sure to satisfy that craving. It’s almost as if the five members were tabbed to write music to an old, classic horror movie and said fuck the movie, let’s make a record. From the opening drum groove and vocal sequence of TV Speaks, you definitely get a feeling that this isn’t the same monotonous music that’s graced the cities ears up until now (barring a few exceptions). It’s beyond refreshing. The five members seamlessly interweave thought provoking lyrics coupled with eerie, vintage, blues inspired music that could certainly provide a backdrop for a chilly autumn night.-- Auxilarate.com

It all started almost 2 years ago. Morgan Hartman came to Kyle Mayfield (ex-The Uglysuit, Junebug Spade) with the intention of writing some music together. They collaborated on a few folk-influenced acoustic tunes. Shortly after, Isaiah Sharp (ex- O Fidelis) joined adding another layer of acoustic guitar to the mix. Eventually, the group decided a fuller sound was necessary. Sam Welchel (ex-O Fidelis, Mannachine) began playing drums, and the acoustic guitars gave way to electrics and the full sound of the band began to emerge.

After a period of writing new songs and working with a few different musicians, Alex Coleman (ex- The Uglysuit, Defining Times) emerged as the bass player, adding another intricate layer to the music. The first full band shows were booked in May of 2011 and since then shows have been played at almost every live music venue in the Oklahoma City area. Feathered Rabbit was featured on the Blackwatch Stage of FreeTulsa! 2011. In October, the band embarked on a short tour to Chicago.

An appearance at the Buffalo Lounge at SXSW marked the beginning of a very busy year for the band that also saw them record their debut EP. The self-produced album was released on September 21st to a very receptive audience. The band plans to focus on writing and touring for the near future with another album planned for next summer.

The band employs a variety of influences, to inform their version of an atmospheric neo-noir sound. The music has been referred to as nostalgic as it conjures memories of long-lost rock and roll while still coming off as a very fresh sound.