Flatbed Ford
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Flatbed Ford

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF
Band Rock Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Flatbed Ford takes its brand new CD out for a drive"

By Rochelle A. Shenk

Published: Feb 08, 2007 12:47 PM EST

LANCASTER COUNTY, PA - Punchy rock ’n’ roll with a blues sound will be on tap at the Bottling Works at Bube’s Brewery, Mount Joy, Saturday.

Flatbed Ford, a blues-based rock band, will be celebrating the release of the group’s first CD, “Hangups & Holdouts,” at the Bottling Works.

It’s the right place for the party, since the Bottling Works has been the scene of several “firsts” for the four-member band.

Not only was it the first place the group played, in September 2005, but it was also where the band was born. In April 2005, vocalist Josh Longo and bass player Roy Nash struck up a conversation at the bar, found that they both had an interest in music and decided to form a band. By September, the band was playing its first date there.

At that time, Nash was in a band with Scott “Skot” Shaub and a second band with guitar player Colin Milne. When Flatbed Ford formed, Shaub came on board as the drummer and Milne joined the group a few weeks later when the band he was playing with folded.

Although all four band members are in their 20s (Nash at 27 is the oldest, and Shaub at 22 is the youngest), they each have diverse musical backgrounds and interests.

Originally from Alexandria, Va., Nash’s family moved to Lancaster County in 1987. The Elizabethtown Area High School graduate started playing the guitar as he was growing up. The first band he liked was Guns N’ Roses, and his most influential teacher was music teacher John Trostle.

Milne’s family moved to the Hershey area from Seattle, Wash., when he was 8. A graduate of Hershey High School, Milne’s been into music since he was 12. He played in the high school jazz band and took guitar lessons for years.

Shaub, a Hempfield High School graduate, has played guitar since he was 14. He also plays the piano and learned to play the drums on a set that a friend had left at his house. Shaub, who was the guitar player in his and Nash’s former group, took up the drums when the group needed a drummer.

“Since I played piano and had tried the set at home, I had no difficulty with the rhythm,” Shaub says. “He’s a natural musician,” adds Nash.

A Manheim Central and University of Pittsburgh graduate, Longo became interested in music through his theatrical experiences. He was involved in theater throughout his school years and continued to perform in college productions. After he graduated, he moved to New York to become an actor, but moved back home after a few years.

He was also a member of an a cappella group while he was in college. “It was serious training through practice,” he says.

“When Josh came along, it gave the band a voice,” Nash says. He adds that during a brainstorming session, Longo came up with the name.

“I was playing around with images in my mind. I looked up and saw a poster with the tailgate of a truck, and thought Flatbed Ford. It’s not about the type of truck, but about the image of a ‘pink carnation and a pickup truck.’ Plus as the son of an English teacher, I liked the alliteration,” Longo says.

“In our band it comes out that blues is the father of rock ’n’ roll. There are a lot of different emotions in our music —it’s not all happy or all sad; it’s a mix, just like you go through different emotions throughout the day,” Nash says.

Every member of the group takes part in the songwriting. Longo notes that, while he and Shaub have a “feel for the music and know when something works,” Nash and Milne have studied the theory and can explain why it works. “We all bring something different to the table,” Longo says.

After playing at a number of local venues, they felt they were ready to pool their resources and make a CD. “We wanted to do it right, to make the CD a real piece of art,” Nash says.

The CD, which contains seven original tracks written by band members, has a cartoon of the band by Shaub. “I wanted to do something different. Something that would say who we are as well as something that would stand out when someone’s flipping through CDs at a store,” he says.

The group credits producer Jason Rubal of Harrisburg’s Seventh Wave Studios with not only assisting them with the CD production but also helping them with their stage presence. Flatbed Ford is also dedicating the evening’s performance to Nash’s uncle, Bobby Hess.


Flatbed Ford CD Release Party

with Codorus Cruise Line

Sat. 9 p.m.

Bube’s Brewery/Bottling Works

102 N. Market St., Mount Joy

- Lancaster New Era


"Hangups and Holdouts" copyright 2007
Forthcoming, untitled LP in early 2009



The irony about rock and roll is that, for a genre so rooted in shock and rebellions, musicians have to try awfully hard these days to raise anyone's eyebrows. Lately it seems that the harder these bands might try, the moreboring the seem to get. From the androgynously clad emo bands to the “more lo-fi than thou” approach of the elitist indie rockers its all fairly vanilla underneath the ‘extreme’ veneer.
In a time when the over classification of music is based upon sub-genres of sub-genres, taking on prefixes and suffixes in an ever present attempt to define what is “oh-so-different” about them, along comes FLATBED FORD who, albeit unwittingly and subconsciously, actually makes one take notice simply by playing a sort of rock and roll you just don’t see anymore: the un-hyphenated kind. There is a beauty in the fact that FLATBED FORD’S music isn’t “post”-anything. It’s not anything-‘core”. It’s just rock and roll – pure, straight-up, all-American, blue-collar, broke-as-a-joke “rock and roll.”
“We pride ourselves in the answer we give when people ask what kind of music we play,” explains frontman Josh Longo. “’Rock and roll is our answer. Everything else we need to say we say through the music.” Adds bassist Roy Nash,“We didn’t ‘pick’ this sound – it chose us. There’s no model we base ourselves on. It’s just who we are.”
It says more than a little about the current state of rock and roll that FLATBEDFORD actually distinguishes itself by not having a gimmick. The average listener has become so used to perceiving a pre-fabricated hook – “This band’s frontman is a Wiccan priest!” or “This singer has her own TV reality show!” - that most people don’t know what to make of a band that just …well..plays rock and roll.
The band’s debut album, 2007’s Hangups and Holdouts reiterates that stance. The album is at once a snapshot of where the band is now and a sign of where the guys are headed musically. Like every other aspect of the band, to boil the album down any further than “rock and roll” is hardly necessary. Traces of blues, country and punk spice up the mix, and Longo’s BADLEES-sounding voice can give the songs a roots-rock feel, but overall, this is a straight-as-an-arrow, all-American rock. And that’s exactly how FLATBED FORD likes it.
“We let the songwriting dictate the nature of this band. Gimmicks really never crossed our mind,” Nash says succinctly. “We’re just so comfortable in our own skin, not to mention that gimmicks also have a tendency to limit what you can do creatively. With that in mind, why introduce something that’s only going to tie your hands?”
Rather than being framed in drama or scandal, FLATBED FORD’S story is characterized by an actual sense of joy. The members united three and a half years ago after serving stints in various Central PA bands, and since day one, minute one, chord one, they knew that this lineup was the real deal. Here were four guys who knew music, who knew what they loved, and who knew how to convey that sentiment to a crowd without any tricks or shticks – it was a match made in rock and roll heaven.
“The first time we played together,” says a beaming Longo, “we just glanced around at each other and knew it was right.”
“This band’s chemistry is unlike anything else I’ve participated in. When we all played together for the first time, we just looked at each other and smiled,” Nash echoes. “It’s such a blessing to be in a band that I’m as much a fan of as I am a part of. This experience has let me see that my idea of what real rock and roll is can be realized and expanded upon.”
If you live in or near Central Pennsylvania, chances are that you’ve either seen FLATBED FORD in action or you’ve had to listen to one of your friends babble on and on about the band’s live show. There is a reason for that: this is a band that means every word and every note of its music. It’s the “no gimmick” policy in action. And it’s why fans around the region have been flocking to FLATBED FORD shows like little rock and roll disciples.
“People seem almost relieved to hear what it is that we do,” Nash says. “We approach every show with a passion and energy that slices through all of the pretension and posturing of the music world – and people see that.”
And do they ever. Thankfully for us all, in a point in musical history where not having a gimmick is actually a gimmick in its own right, we have bands like FLATBED FORD to guide the way.