Girls & Boys
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Girls & Boys

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"Girls and Boys: Why I Rock"

Girls and Boys: Why I Rock
Thursday, 8 September 2005
Filed under: Portfolio

[This piece appears in All The Rage.]

The seven member ensemble known as Girls and Boys is a pop music melting pot. Their lyrics directly and indirectly reference great pop touchstones; their music fuses the big back beat of Motown with the shimmering guitars and keys of power pop. Terah Thompson and Adria Heimburger sing sunny harmonies and sultry kiss-offs backed by a band of boys: Ben Patton, Brian Fuzzell, Jim O’Shea, Joe Baine Colvert, and Mike Styles. Joe suggests that the band is like a “Lambchop you can dance to.” All The Rage corralled five of the seven for a chat that attempted to sum up the septet.

JOE: Originally, it was a zeitgeist thing. Luke Schneider [from Lylas] and I separately had this idea of something being really influenced by Motown. We also saw the *Standing in the Shadows of Motown* movie, myself and Ben and Mike. I guess in my head that was kind of the genesis of it.
BEN: Yeah, we kinda wanted to do like Motown/Phil Spector kind of thing but with more modern lyrics. We just thought it would be a cool thing to do. We didn’t see anyone else doing it. As we started playing, the sound evolved beyond a simple Motown thing. I think it evolved into something else. When people ask me what it sounds like, I say that we’re reinterpreting Motown in the wake of everything that’s happened in music since then.

BEN: I like to put lots of proper nouns in the lyrics.
JOE: *Love Unexplainable* name checks F. Scott Fitzgerald, Beyonce and Billie Holiday.
BEN: I’m not afraid to borrow things. Rock music through the years is people borrowing from each other.

JOE: We’re going to record some more. We’re going to take these three songs [from a recent session] and they’ll be online actually the day this article comes out. And then we’re going to add to these. Hopefully do an EP later in the fall. I’d love to play out of town more. It’s kind of hard with the seven people.

JOE: Friends and Lovers. That was the only one that got close.

BEN: When we first thought of it, we thought that *has* to be taken.
JOE: It was Adria’s idea wasn’t it?
BEN: It was Adria’s idea, but we just couldn’t believe that no one was using that as a band name.
ADRIA: The website was taken.
JOE: Yeah, don’t type in—at least at work.
BEN: We wanted something that was not obtuse. We wanted something that wouldn’t sound pretentious and make people think we’re an indie band. We want to appeal to the masses.

Girls and Boys can be found at
- All The Rage

"Heard Around Town: Girls & Boys"

By Will Ayers,
September 08, 2005
A year and a half ago, three Nashville pop musicians got together. It took a year before they played their first show, but since then Girls & Boys' Supremes-meets-Wilco sound has propelled them to the front lines of Nashville's underground music vanguard. Bassist and songwriter Ben Patton spoke about where he finds inspiration to write songs for a self-described seven-piece "pop orchestra."

What: Girls & Boys w/Spiderfighter and The Reputation
When: 10 p.m. Friday
Where: The End, 2219 Elliston Place
Cost: $7
Members, ages instruments and day jobs: Adria Heimburger, 24, voice, Designer Renaissance clerk; Ben Patton, 26, bass, courier; Brian Fuzzell, 28, drums, graphic designer; Jim O'Shea, 28, guitar, Bar Twenty3 bartender; Joe Baine Colvert, 25, keyboards, Amerisuites front desk clerk; Mike Stiles, 26, drums, architect; Terah Thompson, 23, voice, TSU student.

What took you so long to play your first show? It seemed every time we were almost ready to do a show, someone would quit; so it was like taking one step forward and two steps back.

How does the songwriting process go in a band with seven people? Personally, it's kind of become much more of a science than an art. The idea for a song usually comes pretty quickly, but the realities of filling in all the blanks and getting it just right takes much longer.

What takes the longest? I've definitely had to make some changes in the way that I write to accommodate the girls. I've been writing songs a long time for me to sing, but they have a different range and you have to make it gender-appropriate.

Where do you find inspiration? In this band, almost all of the good ideas I've come up with have happened along jogging in the morning in Bellevue. When I get back inside, I'll go write [an idea] down immediately. Or I'll go record it. I have a little four-track for that.

So who turns up at your shows? At this point it's kind of been your stereotypical Nashville show-goer. Me personally, I would say it's why we picked the name Girls & Boys - we set out to consciously pick something that was accessible. We didn't want to sound like an indie band. I want to be in a band that all kinds of people would want to come and see, not just the so-called hipsters, although that's probably mostly who's coming.

Web site:

Copyright 2000-2004, The City Paper LLC.
Ê - City Paper Nashville

"Just like Beyonce, like Billie Holiday"

I'm having one of those days when I'm so backed up on blogging anything at all that it's hard to get started. But here's the scoop-de-doop. I've been working on an interview with Girls and Boys for the Rage. I interviewed most of the band Tuesday night at Lake Fever Productions. They gave me a CD of three songs they've been working on and I've been playing it nonstop. I think I'm on the verge of becoming the sort of icky fan who gushes constantly about how fantastic they are.

Seriously, they're fantastic. Two of the songs, 'Love Unexplainable' and 'My Biggest Fan' are absolute pure pop classics. The kind of tunes that a band should be able to retire on. I have repeated 'Love Unexplainable' dozens of times since Tuesday. The recording is fresh and bright and the girls' voices are amazing. It just makes me so happy. -


Still working on that hot first release.



Girls & Boys is a seven-piece pop orchestra. A femme-fronted Wall of Sound. Imagine the Supremes kissing Wilco or the Ronettes flirting with REM and you're on the right track. Every performance is an event, a party. And rightly so.

What's in a name, anyway? Everything. The Girls & Boys name describes the lineup (girls and boys!) and doubles as a reference to a fantastic Blur song.

Partially composed of former members of prominent Tennessee pop acts My Tyger, Verde, and Sneaky Eaters, Girls & Boys formed in early 2004. The band sweated it out in various rehearsal spaces throughout Nashville for over a year before playing its first gig. A sold-out headlining gig no less.

Songwriting influences range from the Zombies and the Nazz to Prince and '60s girl groups. Girls & Boys is a big bundle of sugary sweet sounds with a strong rhythmic backbone. A mix of old and new. Music to dance to.