The Dealers
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The Dealers

Foothill Ranch, California, United States

Foothill Ranch, California, United States
Band Rock Classic Rock


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The Dealers @ boscoe's Bar

Lake Forest, California, USA

Lake Forest, California, USA

The Dealers @ The Coach House

San Juan Capistrano, California, USA

San Juan Capistrano, California, USA

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



Every young musician who picks up an instrument dreams of one day becoming like their rock idols: Pete Townsend, Jimi Hendrix, Robert Plant or any of the others who have changed music. Most of these musicians only dream about playing venues like the Whiskey-A-Go-Go. For one Orange County band, this dream became reality.
The Dealers, consisting of two Cal State Fullerton students, lead singer Kevin Thews, 22, senior advertising major, and lead guitarist Kyle Eckermann, 21, junior marketing major. Along with drummer Justin Ludwig, 21, psychology major at Saddleback Community College, and bassist Shawn Fox, 21, ITT Tech graduate, are trying to make a name for themselves in the music community.
With a blend of classic and modern rock, playing at venues like the iconic Whiskey, where bands such as Mötley Crüe and The Doors have played before, seems like a fantasy for the four high school friends. “We got to play next to the poster of Jim Morrison and I kept thinking, ‘he played here!’ and we just fit right in,” Thews said. “The place hasn’t changed in 40 years, it was amazing!”
The Dealers have made their way through other well known venues, bringing music to eager listeners who enjoy the sound of classic rock but can’t afford the hefty price tag.
“Playing the Coach House was pretty cool,” Ludwig said. “It had a really good sound.”
However, playing wasn’t always smooth for the band. It wasn’t until early 2009 that they finally found their sound when Fox officially joined.
“We would have people come in and play bass for us,” Eckermann said. “But when Shawn came in, many of our songs drastically changed.”
Like most bands, finding a fitting name was no easy task.
“We had one show where we started out with one name and changed it after every song,” Thews said. “I think we started out as Cold Shot from a Stevie Ray Vaughan song, then we were Guero Banditos and finally something else by the end.”
The band finally decided on their name The Dealers, by taking a cue from the classic ACDC song, “For Those About to Rock,” where it states, “We are the dealers. We’ll give you everything you need.”
With the attitude of anything goes, the band has nothing if not a fun loving spirit.
“I’m a bassist and I can’t hear out of one ear,” Fox said. “And we have a photographer who can’t see.”
With a new manager, the band hopes to be in the studio by summer to record their extended play album, and maybe one day join the ranks of all the great bands that have inspired them. - The Daily Titan (California State University, Fullerton)

It has been five years since the outfit now known as the Dealers came together. As Under Construction, Kevin Thews (lead vocals/rhythm guitar/harmonica), Kyle Eckermann (lead guitar/backup vocals) and Justin Ludwig (drums) would play cover songs. When they started writing original songs, they added a fourth member, bassist Shawn “Funk Nasty” Fox. The “construction” was complete once they changed the band’s name. They’re an “old-fashioned rock-&-roll band,” the Rancho Santa Margarita/Foothill Ranch natives like to say, combining the styles of their heroes—Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin, Green Day, Sublime—with a modern edge and a special brand of humor.

OC Weekly: What’s different from when you were called Under Construction?

Kevin Thews: We were terrible.

Kyle Eckermann: I think one of the things that was really cool about us and this band is that we all knew how to play our instruments when we came together. With the other one, there was a learning curve.

So, you started off as a cover band?

Thews: We played five or six Sublime songs when we started out; that’s what we learned. We still play covers, but we have a bunch of our own songs, and I’m really proud of them. I consider myself to be modest, but I really think our songs are good.

How did you guys decide on the moniker the Dealers?

Thews: We’d gone through a bunch of names. We had the Thingamajigsaw Puzzles, the Dope Fiends—which was more of a joke, but we thought it was super-funny.

Eckermann: We were Cold Shot for a while.

Thews: We had Güero Banditos. We came up with a bunch of different names, but I was listening to the AC/DC song “For Those About to Rock (We Salute You),” and there is the line “We are the dealers/we’ll give you everything you need.” And I thought, “Why is there no band named the Dealers? It’s such a cool name.” It’s a little mysterious, the Dealers. The dealers of what?

Actually, there are several other bands called the Dealers. Have you heard anything from them about having the same name?

Thews: Not yet. We’ve looked into it, and no one has it locked down. Nobody huge has that name. But if we have to, we’ll have a rock-off for the name, and we’ll see who deserves it.

What have been your favorite moments as a band?

Thews: The first show we played as the Dealers—this is actually how we knew our name should be the Dealers—we were doing a pay-to-play gig at Hogue Barmichaels in Newport Beach. Kyle and I were sitting in the parking lot: We were both kind of frustrated about the money-collecting, and we’re arguing in the car, yelling at each other. We hear, “Hey, what are you guys doing?” We look over, and there is a police officer, and we tell him, “Oh, nothing. We’re playing a show here.” The cop asks, “Well, what’s in that plastic bag?”—because we had put all of our money in this bag. He starts asking us a bunch of questions: “Are you guys selling drugs?” “What’s in those cases?” “Do I need to search your car?” We knew it looked weird, but we tried to explain to him, showed him the tickets and everything. So the cop goes, “What’s your band name?” Kyle and I looked at each other and said, “The Dealers.” It was perfect. I went inside and told that story, and it went over well. And that’s the kind of thing where you know you’ve picked a good name when something like that happens. I know there are other bands with that name, but they’re not going to be able to have a story like that.
- OC Weekly

“I just began recording a younger Orange County band called The Dealers, whose influences are undeniable classic rock. It’s quite refreshing to observe a group of folks at least 35 years my junior who have cut their teeth, musically speaking, on the same kind of music I did many years ago,” Taylor said.
- OC Music Magazine

Their website says it better than anyone else ever could: “Good ol’ fashioned, gut-busting, removal-of-clothing inducing rock ‘n’ roll.”
The Dealers, in their 2010 self-titled debut E.P., establish a sound akin to their influences which include AC/DC, Deep Purple, Aerosmith and the Doors, mixed in with a touch of humor and their own little modern twist.
Fans of these pivotal classic rock bands will certainly find joy in the Dealers’ tunes, such as “Don’t Drag Me Down,” which offers a long and winding guitar solo reminiscent of 1970s rock anthems.
Their song “Big Bad Bessie” features a comedic side the band loves to show in their lyrics, including some choice words about a lady named Bessie, all atop intertwining guitar and harmonica solos and quick drum rhythms.
After five years of music-making together, the band has finally settled on their name the Dealers, a change from “Under Construction,” a moniker suitable for their earlier works.
Orange County natives, the foursome emanates a rock ‘n’ roll, nearly rockabilly vibe you could picture greasers and their ladies boogieing to.
Some songs are heavier than others, such as “Rock Me.” On their website blog, Kevin Thews, lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and harmonica player of the band, described it as, “Our newest of the songs we were recording. We came up with new verses literally the day of, and it adds so much more power to the song. This song has 70s hard rock written all over it. Rockin’ verse, catchy chorus and heavy Sabbath-like outro make this the most headbanging song on the album.”
While it may not be everyone’s genre-of-choice, the talent in the Dealers’ self-titled E.P. is undeniable. The entire album is available for streaming on the band’s MySpace at, where you can also find information about their upcoming show at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, Calif., on Feb. 18. - The Daily Titan (California State University, Fullerton)


The Dealers EP
1. Don't Drag Me Down
2. Big Bad Bessie
3. Don't Color Me Insane
4. Woman
5. Rock Me



The Dealers, are a rock n’ roll band from Orange County, California. Combining the classic sounds of AC/DC, Led Zeppelin and The Beatles; with modern tones similar to Foo Fighters, Sublime and The Offspring.

The band came together in the summer of 2007 playing in bars and friends backyards. In the last four years the band has progressed to play at places like The Whiskey a go go, House of Blues, The Galaxy Theater and the Coach House. They also play charity events; most recently the Relay for Life Cancer Walk. The Dealers have opened for legendary musicians like Gary Hoey, and timeless tribute bands including Led Zepagain, Wild Child, Atomic Punks and Iron Maidens.

The Dealers released their first self Titled EP with Keith Taylor at Custom Taylored Studios in 2010. It features five original songs. Each of which has something different to offer; gut busting riffs, earth rumbling bass, rhythmic drum beats and relatable lyrics that you can’t help but sing along to even if you don’t know the words.

Currently The Dealers are working on all new material including all new covers and original songs. You can find them online on Facebook, Myspace and twitter, or at many major venues across the Orange County and Los Angeles.