The Help

The Help

BandRock

“Where’s The Help when you want it? Where’s The Help when you need it?” Chances are, if it isn’t coming to somebody’s musical rescue in a nearby town, it can be found at its home base between Raleigh and Durham, NC creating a dynamic mix of original songs with a decidedly bluesy underpinning.

Biography

We’re not talking about the down in the Delta, back porch variety of blues…..nor the young hat-wearing, gun-slinging type, though admirers of those styles could find something to like with this quartet. While there may be occasional nods to what has come before, as is often the case with music, elements of rock and roll, country, and even reggae can be found in the sound that is The Help. Even those terms don’t fully suffice when trying to get a handle on the group in totality. Kicking Bear Records’ Producer/CEO Woody Hewitt sums up the band as “We were not looking for more of the same and as it turns out the HELP was exactly what we are looking for. From the blues to southern-flavored rock they pour their hearts and souls into every note.”

Why “The Help”? “We’ve all been paying our dues and kicking around in bands throughout the years,” says guitarist Jason Barker. “Performing musicians certainly know what it’s like to be treated as ‘the help’ at times. Then there’s the notion that we’d like to help people with our music.”

The group has indeed already been of help, coming together in the summer of 2005 to aid an ailing local musician by coordinating and playing a medical fundraising event which drew in some of the Triangle area’s most prominent entertainers. “I don’t think we have this premeditated grand notion necessarily of changing the world with what we do,” Barker continues. “We are essentially a rock and roll garage band looking for a good time. Our garage is nice though, and we try to put the proper amount of thought into our music and the craft of it.” After all, as one of their lyrics says “This ain’t no Dylan we’re talking about”, The Help isn’t so much about pushing political agendas or creating new religions unless your political and religious platform is built upon honest music played by real people with real instruments. That said, The Help is continually evolving and tries to avoid any boundaries which would limit the parameters of their expression. “What you see today might not be what you get tomorrow.”

2006 has seen The Help busy in the studio completing their debut album for Kicking Bear Records, with a second installment already in the works. Consisting solely of original compositions, the band is gearing up to embark upon a mission to bring its music to whoever wants to hear it, and to some who probably don’t. “This is not about being another group that plays ‘Mustang Sally’ or ‘Play That Funky Music White Boy’, says Barker. “Those are all good and well; but we want to make songs that have that kind of impact, where others want to play what WE’VE written.” So while the band continues to evolve nothing seems to be sacred in terms of lyrical content. “We’ll write about everything from toilet paper to tequila.”

Antonio Colon- lead vocals

I began playing music when I was 15 or 16 and have been singing ever since. Most of my youth was spent playing in cover bands and it wasn’t until I began to sing jazz standards and ballads that I began to get into improvisation and the freedom that comes with it. This is what makes The Help project such a pleasure. It’s all original music to us as a group. The blues has always interested me and I feel privileged to be able to work with such talented and creative players. In the end, it’s all just music, and it’s all just a song and I intend on singing it. Every person lives their own form of the blues during the course of their lives and when applied to music and singing, it adds color and character to the quality of the voice. As we struggle to live life, we struggle with the blues.

Mark Scheuer- bass

Music, for me, has always been about emotion, and it can stir feelings on many levels. I can be moved by a stunning vocal performance, a lyric passage that paints a message in the abstract, or an artist communicating with sounds. A silly song that evokes a pleasant memory for me can be as much fun to listen to as a complicated piece in which the musicians touch me with their work. And for me this transcends a variety of musical styles and genres.

As many musicians do, I started out playing in cover bands in the New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut area. I was listening to some of the British “super groups” at the time, so I listened a lot to players like John Entwistle, Christopher Squire, Jack Bruce, Greg Lake and of course “Sir Paul”. Later on I really got into what Walter Becker was doing in Steely Dan, and how a session player like Leland Sklar could leave his mark on so many great recordings.

Moving to the Raleigh NC area in 1993 the technical side of my musical interests took over. I found myself as the Front of House sound engineer for a country band called Skeeter Hawk that played regionally in the central North Carolina and Southern Virginia. As part of the positive development from the Skeeter Hawk experience I was able to make new contacts. Shortly after Skeeter Hawk disbanded I got involve

Discography

LPs : due in Febuary 2007 their debut CD... theHELP

Set List

Originals:

No Win Situation
Bout All I Can Stand
The Call That Never Comes
Speaking Freely
Struggle With The Blues
Things Aren't Always As They Seem
Three Minutes Till Midnight
Blow Us Away
Serpent's Lament
The Fix
Band Daddy
God Said Know
I Need Love
Sugar Daddy
Tomb Rock
It's Time
Baby Makes Three
Blues Agave'
Stella
Another Skin

Covers:

After Midnight
All Along The Watchtower
Born Under A Bad Sign
Cheap Sunglasses
Don't Think Twice
Eminence Front
Fire
Good Day For The Blues
Highway 61
Living In A Dream
Phone Booth
Pretzel Logic
Rainy Night In Georgia
Rock And Roll Hoochie Coo
Suzy Q
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Working Man's Blues