The Dead Americans
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The Dead Americans

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You guys, the new album is AWESOME> I think my faves are The Way You Are, Love and War, Snake In The Grass, You Don't Have To Go.... I pretty much want to have sex with the second half of the album.
But goddamnit you can't play a CD backwards!!!!!! What the hell does that thing say?!—Asher Fulero (Everyone Orchestra, Surrounded by Ninjas), 7/5/06

The Dead Americans were simply splendid and in quite fine form. They are a legitimate contender for BEST band in Eugene, people. Zak laid the new CD on me!! YES!!---Mr. Random, 6/17/06

GREAT ALBUM YOU GUYS!!!—The Turntable Enabler (Eleven Eyes), 6/17/2006, 1:52 PM

Dead Americans closed, and the main attraction was their singer, who does the 'happy hands' thing in a sexy kitzsche pop bubbly way. The overall sound was very polished, very enjoyable. It was odd seeing 4 dudes playing the instros and one woman up front dancing and singing, gently swinging her pigtails moving in her nice-fitting '60s jeans, while sharing a music stand with a dude in chunky euro glasses and a ski cap looking like Elvis Costello silently conducting the whole thing. It was actually a bit ominous, hence perhaps the band's moniker.
The eve made me feel like I was in NY or something, or a small Amsterdam cafe, not the Black Forest in Eugene, Oregon. I really like gigs that make me feel that way! Thank you all!—Crimes of Ambition, 3/12/06

I hear everything I really liked about the Cave Dogs. Nice Stuff.---Busholini, 1/05/06

Hey there Zak, your new stuff sounds REALLY good. I like the laid-back vocals, and the male/female blend against the heavy music
We love you guys so much!! You really inspire me to work harder, I mean, you REALLY rocked my panties in a bunch Saturday!!! SEXY!!!!! I'm wearing your shirt with honor!!!
The CoStars

Hey you guys!!!! Thanks for blowing our minds Friday!!!! We hope you guys want to play with us again!! We'd be honored if you did!!! Take care!!!---The Costars, Dec 19, 2005 4:40 PM

Wednesday, 9:25 p.m. (August 17th, 2005)
Every Wednesday during the summer Scobert Park (actually "Scobert Gardens" I guess) hosts a live musical performance.. This evening around 6:30 I was just hanging out around the house, and I heard a band tuning up in the park. The guitar had this sound which reminded me of rockabilly I guess. I thought that might be okay, but I hoped they were good. A few minutes later the band launched into their first song. Gradually I realized that I knew the song... it was the fucking DEAD AMERICANS! Playing in Scobert Park! I quickly found my Tevas, put my keys in my shorts pocket, and scrawled a sloppy note to Mrs. Random..."one of my favorite the park...I'll be there" cuz she wasn't home yet...and strode quickly around the block to the park. The band played for around 90 minutes non-stop. How totally satisfying to see them in such a wonderful outdoor neighborhood setting. I stood in the sun before it disappeared behind the foliage.... Sun in the face and great live rock'n'roll. Yeah! I've written about The Dead Americans before here (7/24). They are playing Saturday night at Luckey's and you should go see them. They are hot, rocking, political, sexy, and multi-media, with 4-part vocal harmony. Rock show!!!---Mr. Random, 8/17/05

To insure that my mood kept on an upward trek, I went to Luckey's last night. The show was HOT: The Dead Americans played a nice, long, energetic and political set, complete with army uniforms, american flags, and a slide show!! I love it that all 5 players have mics and everyone pitches in on backup vox... lots of cool harmonized "doo-doot, doo-doot" action :) At past TDA shows I've mainly focused on Kira (Kyra? sp?) and Zak, but DAMN that Dead American rhythm section!!! Rockin'.

You guyz fuckin' ROCK!!! I wanna be your friend.
Your band's cerebral defiance is a much more mature response to these times than our brand of surrender.
We have to be friends with you - you have a very cool name. We support the Dead Americans.---The Picture is Dead

- Unpublished Feedback

The Dead Americans, Alive On Stage
Local band celebrates CD release.

The band's name is provocative, and the music is too, but not everything about the Dead Americans is as politically charged. Zak Johnson started the band four years ago while living out in the country, working on an organic farm and raising his young daughter. "The people I worked with were DJs and it really broadened my perspective and my enjoyment of music," Johnson said. "I started to listen to all this indie rock and all this obscure stuff and it really made me want to write songs and be in a band."

When the war in Iraq started, Johnson felt inspired to action. "I had a radio and was listening to all the stuff going on about the war starting and it fueled me to want to create something remarkable and beautiful."

Johnson had plenty of musical experience behind him, having played in Abacadubi, Olem Alves Band, West Coast Rhythm Kings and the UO Gospel Ensemble. But it took awhile before he found the solid line-up he has today. With production help from Eleven Eyes drummer Steve Weems, the band is celebrating the release of their debut CD, The Boy Who Shot Out the Sun.

Self-produced and totally self-funded, the album took about a year and a half to record. "I'm really pleased with how it turned out," Johnson said. "It was a lot of hard work, and it's nice to have something to show for all your efforts. "

Johnson's grandparents owned a roller rink, and he inherited stacks of early rock and soul 45s. "I was playing them on my Fisher-Price record player … and just rocking out as a kid. I've always liked the classic sound, but I've also always liked the cutting edge attitude of indie rock. I definitely say our sound is like Jefferson Airplane, Pavement and Fugazi having a lovechild. It's a lot of fun!" - What's Happening, Inc.

The Boy Who Shot Out the Sun

The Dead Americans

(Self-produced, recorded by Brad Erichsen at Harmony Studios in Eugene)

Fans of the rock, punk and psychedelic Dead Americans had been waiting for a debut release from them since at least 2003, when the band had its first gig.

The five-piece band started in 2002, but its excellent debut release didn't come out until mid-July of this year.

Zak Johnson and Kyra Kelly's voices complement each other nicely, especially in the song "Destroyer," but it's a shame there's not more of Kelly here. She handles the lead deftly in "Born to Burn" and "Life in Disguise."

Johnson said for the group's next album, Kelly's voice will be featured more. That's good.

A band bio says the Dead Americans have been compared to Jefferson Airplane, Cave Dogs and the Dandy Warhols. But they are starting to get better known around Eugene as their own entity - and they're starting to come out of their shell a bit.

"The Boy Who Shot Out the Sun" is largely a political album, dealing with national politics and power corruption. It stays fast-paced, with aggressive drums and guitar and strong lyrical content.

Johnson wrote most of the 11 songs found here, but he said the reason the band is successful is the collaboration that each member is committed to.

"It feels like I've known them forever and I think that shows on stage when we get together," said Johnson, 28, who's also in the West Coast Rhythm Kings.

Before the Dead Americans, Johnson tried to get other projects off the ground, but nothing jelled. He said things started to really come together for them when Kelly joined the band.

Now that they're on a roll, all members have agreed to reinvest all the money they make playing gigs back into the band. They already are working on a follow-up album.

"I think the music is really good, but people will become a fan because of the arrangements," said Johnson, who sometimes comes up with lyrics and melodies in his dreams. "You just really have to have fun and be really into what you are doing and support other people." - The Register Guard (Eugene, OR)

Stage Presence
GRRRLZ Rock showcases local female talent

When Cindy Ingram began booking bands, she wanted to use her position to promote female musicianship in Eugene. "It's very symbolic for a woman to be on stage," she says. "It takes a lot of courage."
The Dead Americans

GRRRLZ Rock started off as a modest plan: get a line-up of bands featuring women in rock and book them monthly at the Wetlands. But once Ingram floated her idea, she was blown away by the ensuing buzz. "Within a matter of three weeks I had five venues and 20 sponsors. People were calling saying basically 'Can I give you money?'"

Ingram began putting out feelers to a variety of acts; the response was so enthusiastic she found herself with more than 35 performers to fill five venues on five nights. "We actually had some big regional names that wanted to be a part of it, but the dates didn't work out. It has been a great lesson for me; it pays to ask. Just go out there and do it. It has been very encouraging and validating."

With a lineup including big local names like Deb Cleveland Band, The Ovulators and Norma Fraser, Ingram knew GRRRLZ Rock had drawing power, but she wanted to make sure the bill reflected a diversity of female artists. Little Girl Big Spoon, Mary Ferris and The Subterranian Blackjacks are examples of teen or preteen musicians at the beginning of their careers. "There is a real generational element to these shows," Ingram says.

Kyra Kelly of The Dead Americans says she was honored to be included in the line-up. The rock band's music often delves into personal struggles for individuality. Kelly feels GRRRLZ Rock fits perfectly with the Dead Americans' belief that society needs role models who choose to go against the grain.

"We live in a warrior culture," Kelly says. "Men and women compete with each other. Women compete with each other. It is nice to be coming together as a community within a spirit of cooperation."

Ingram agrees. "It really feels like this idea is connecting the women, creating this budding music 'scene,'" she says. The experience has inspired Ingram to coordinate with other female booking agents to put on an outdoor women's music festival this summer. "If this GRRRLZ Rock thing is any indication of how supported it will be, I have no doubt we can pull it off."

The Dead Americans, The Ginger Hustlers and The Co-Stars play the Wetlands at 10 pm Saturday, Nov. 11. $5. See the complete GRRRLZ Rock lineup at

- What's Happening, Inc.


The Boy Who Shot Out the Sun (2006)-self released
available at:

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New album, "Devolution", featuring "Cryin' Sunshine" and "Paper Doll" coming soon!



The Dead Americans are a touring five-piece rock n' roll powerhouse based out of Eugene, Oregon. Featuring dual lead male/female vocals, they've developed their own X meets the Dandy Warhols/ Jefferson Airplane meets Nirvana alt. rock/post punk style. Smart lyrics, great musicianship, and an ass-kicking live show with eye candy. They've been described as a "Traveling Greek Festival of Music", as they keep the show going on and off the stage. A true party on wheels, and a breath of fresh air into the live music scene in a world plagued by corporate cheese rock and hapless posers. Join them in the fight for musical freedom as they slay the fakes with their fun-loving, anarchistic spirit and undeniably bad-ass rock sound!!!