Good Brother Earl

Good Brother Earl

 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
BandRock

Biography

“Good Brother Earl is a band that gathers its influences from a wide array of genres – rock, blues, country, pop, jam –but not out of indecision. The musicians know what they’re doing, as displayed on the band’s newest release, Perfect Tragedy…The sophomore album from the Pittsburgh natives, Perfect Tragedy blends all of these genres, adds in maybe one or two more and slaps on yet another layer of rock, creating something praiseworthy both artistically and as an enjoyable listen” says album reviewer Michael Boyles of the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt News) newspaper.

After adhering to the musical cliché by parting with not one but two drummers, the band has finally settled into what has become an extremely cohesive unit. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PPG) calls Good Brother Earl’s music “a full-bodied Triple-A rock sound that can fall right into place between the Counting Crows, Dave Matthews and the Jayhawks.” The City Paper writes, “The most obvious comparisons for Good Brother Earl’s imagistic rendering of everyday would be late Old 97’s, pre-‘Yankee Hotel Foxtrot’ Wilco and college-campus favorites Counting Crows.”

This time around the band set out to write more concise songs, while improving on their already stellar sonic quality and expert musicianship. The result is eleven songs that tackle love, loneliness, addiction, and at times social commentary. Rege Behe of the Tribune-Review states “[Perfect Tragedy] is an album best heard in its entirety, a work that resembles a novel in emotional highs and lows that are present,” and calls Schmutz’s vocals “one of the most expressive voices of any local rock band.”

The group’s subtle shift toward the more mainstream rock genre can be heard immediately in the opening song “Fighting Gravity” a three and half minute opus with an infectious electric guitar hook that can be heard in rotation on both WDVE-FM & WYEP-FM Pittsburgh. It then follows with “6 O’Clock News” which the PPG calls “a song about selling fear, that has a chunky Neil Young rhythm.” On another track the City Paper goes on to say “On riff-heavy numbers such as ‘Girls Make Love, Boys Make War,’ you get the sense that if [Schmutz] blew the lid off a little more he’d approach Chris Cornell territory, were it not for the touch of Adam Duritz mellowing things out.” And the PPG adds that it “rides on a hard rock riff that would make Joe Perry smile.”

In 2003, out of 1600 bands, Good Brother Earl was selected by TAXI and Billboard as one of the top 15 independent acts in the Northeast. That distinction earned the band a spot on a nationwide cable television commercial promoting AMC (American Movie Classics) which helped them gain national exposure and sell albums across the country. Their original sound has also been a staple on the daily rotation of the nationally acclaimed local independent radio station WYEP-FM, where the songs “Another Rainy Day” and “Lonely Heart” receive regular airplay. Good Brother Earl has recently been featured on Pittsburgh stations WDVE-FM, WOGI-FM, WXDX-FM, and WRKZ-FM. The band is also a staple on XM Satellite’s Radio Unsigned Channel and they were recently showcased on the NPR show “Mountain Stage” with the Derek Trucks Band. The band has enjoyed some film success with songs featured in the theatrical motion picture Come Away Home, High Tide Entertainment and the short film The Fine Line Between Cute and Creepy, Slanekid Films.

Lyrics

When I Come Around

Written By: Good Brother Earl / Jeff Schmutz

On low days, you’re passing the time back to yourself
Clean house, put your dusty heart upon the shelf
Your shadow runs like a Queen to the guillotine,
Save your subjects first
Cause you can’t break rank when you soul’s already in the hearse.
You look so lonely….
When I come around
(say you will remember)

When I come around
(say you won’t forget)

When I come around
(say it won’t surrender)

When I come around
(say it won’t regret)
You ran in, took a ride on my rollercoaster
Then you came back, with a man on a movie poster
Your sad eyes sing with the song of the radiator
Then you ran away
Bring your love to the temple then you take it all away
You look so lonely…
CHORUS
Time, is a gun, I lick my wounds
Feel the heat and hide the sun
What you can’t take, What I can’t give
We rush to burn what’s all at stake.

Second Hand Heart

Written By: GBE / Jeff Schmutz

It’s a blinding light reflecting off my ocean
It’s a daisy in the springtime with a notion
I’m a honeybee attracted to your motion
But when everything I touch, turns to blue
Sometimes late at night, when I go crazy
‘Cause I can’t see the light you shine to save me
I count back all the kisses as you go
If I can’t be up close I’ll love you far away
It’s a solitary midnight kiss on new year
It’s the feeling punch drunk loving never gets there
I’m a Romeo forgetting all his Shakespeare
But when everything I touch, turns to blue
Sometimes late at night, when I go crazy
‘Cause I can’t see the light you shine to save me
I count back all the kisses as you go
If I can’t be up close I’ll love you far away
You and I and Mr. Cool went running ‘round the radio but by the time we caught our breath, I was too slow
Swam into the ocean blue, got swallowed by a whale or two, but if you hold my hand I won’t let go
Wish I may I wish I might, fix my love to catch a flight, back in time with an angel in the snow
Why does love get me so high, kissed a girl and made her cry, by and by the bonds I pray will show
I tick the clock and kill the day, when all that’s left to do is pray, for a second hand heart, to let it grow

Lonely Heart

Written By: GBE / Jeff Schmutz

Yet another chapter in a never ending story
It’s the part that deals with love and life and hope and fate and glory
While on a road somewhere in Western Tennessee
I jumped the track and headed back to where my heart could follow me

Spent too many days under the fist of indignation
Bought a life subscription to my own imagination
Now that you have my undivided admiration
May we continue with our lonely heart creation

Did I dream you into life or are you some apparition
My life thus far was filled with useless superstition
If this is real then what’s the price of the admission
Did you know you are my favorite addiction

I’ll be on the ground, daydreaming of you
Won’t you follow me down, and daydream too
In a kinder shade of blue

So now you’ve seen me on my race toward imperfection
Can I still convince you girl, to dance with my reflection
I woke up this morning with my heart upon my sleeve
It seems the book of love has issued my reprieve

So that’s my song and dance, my circumstance, my story

Packed full of dreams to chase, a pretty face, a little worry
Made sure my head was in my pocket with my keys
Life looks much different when you’re always on your knees

I’ll be on the ground, daydreaming of you
Won’t you follow me down, and daydream too
In a kinder shade of blue

Discography

GOOD BROTHER EARL - SELF-TITLED - 2004

PERFECT TRAGEDY - 2006

FICTION -DECEMBER 2009

RADIO PLAY:
ANOTHER RAINY DAY - WYEP
LONELY HEART - WYEP
WAKING UP IN THE SAME WORLD - XM SATELLITE
NEED YOU - FROGGY RADIO
WHEN I COME AROUND - WDVE / WXDX / WYEP
CAN'T KEEP UP - WXDX

Lonely Heart was also featured on a national television commercial for the AMC Channel.

Set List

Sets can be up to 2 1/2 hours.

All original band, but covers incorporated such as:
Man of Constant Sorrow
Peter Gabriel
Coldplay
Dave Matthews Band
Pearl Jam
Tom Petty
and many more...