The Letters Home
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The Letters Home

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | INDIE

Los Angeles, California, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Rock Soul

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Apr
01
The Letters Home @ Casey's Irish Pub

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

Mar
26
The Letters Home @ The Cinema Bar

Culver City, California, United States

Culver City, California, United States

Feb
26
The Letters Home @ The Cinema Bar

Culver City, California, United States

Culver City, California, United States

Music

Press


"KMPH - Fox News Appearance"

"You guys are the best" (0:43)

- Jim De La Vega
KMPH Fox 26 - Jim De La Vega (Anchor)


"Dirty Soul Rock Tour - Atascadero Times"

Dirty soul rockers The Letters Home will take the stage at the Otter Rock Café in Morro Bay from 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 20.

Singer/songwriter and keys master Andrew Monheim, lead guitarist Joe DeCicco, percussionist Mike Gattshall, bassist Omar Mohsin, Tenor saxophonist Stephen (Saxy) Herring and alto and soprano saxophonist Clarence Witherspoon are driving the sound behind The Letters Home. The band will be taking its show on the road from home base Los Angeles to debut new record “Lush Green Lies,” released in January.

“The sound we describe as a dirty, soul, rock,” Monheim said. “That sound came in our live shows as pretty reckless and fun. It is soulful and takes people all over the emotional grid. That kind of comes from our love of the music and what we do and dirty soul rock and the way we preform was born out of that love for the music.”

The Letters Home formed when DeCicco and Monheim met in the Arizona desert; then moved to Los Angeles and met Gattshall. Everyone in the band is from a different part of the country; DeCicco is from Chicago, Gattshall is from Ohio and Monheim is from Philadelphia.

“Doing the L.A. scene you get a bit desensitized,” Monheim said. “So the Letters Home was formed as a way to send the music as our letters home to our family and friends.” DeCicco went on to say that when bassist Mohsin joined the band in L.A. it all started to come together.

Mohsin said, “We come from all over the globe and we are able to pick a pivotal city, Los Angeles to meet and share our ideas and we definitely have a message. Andrew has bestowed me so much knowledge I feel like he is one of my best friends. So that is what inspired me to join the band.”

The new album comes out Sept. 4 and is a mix of the sound of soul and rock. DeCicco and Monheim both came up with some ideas and brought them into a band practice session and the new album came together naturally.

Monheim said it is born out of his notebook of ideas he has been accumulating since childhood, “A lot of the lyric came from stories of life that I have collected,” he said. “It is a compilation of stories that were lost in history in the news to stories about random people. I was writing piano ballads and Joe helped me to form our new sound to incorporate the horn section and our killer rhythm section. It was a very natural thing, when everyone came into position it was like fate. With our new horn section coming into play we are very excited. For this show we will have sax and trumpet and can’t wait to get everyone up and dancing.”

If you like horns, a beat that you can dance to, covers of the best in funk and soul and vocals that inspire everyone to sing along, then this is the band for you. Eclectic is the word that describes The Letters Home sound with a little something for everyone to enjoy. If you are not a funk fan, wait a minute and the next song will take a listener into the realm of soulful rock or jump to a harder edged jam-rock-ska sound.

This band is all about the show, engaging the audience and telling the stories of their life on the road and at home. To learn more about The Letters Home or to listen to their music, visit thelettershome.bandcamp.com or TheLettersHome.com. The Otter Rock Café is located at 885 Embarcadero in Morro Bay. For more information, visit otterrockcafe.com. -


"Pasadena Weekly Feature - March 5, 2015"

Some bands are hometown heroes. Then there are those that can’t catch a break without hitting the road. Pasadena-based The Letters Home, a self-described “dirty soul rock” band, is caught somewhere between the two extremes.

Led by charismatic singer-keyboardist Andrew Monheim, the five-piece band — featuring drummer Mike Gattshall, guitarist Joe DeCicco, bassist Omar Mohsin and saxophone player Stephen Herring — has played the red-hot and nationally regarded South by Southwest music fest. Yet, they have been inexplicably left out of the local Make Music Pasadena fest and the Eagle Rock Music Festival. So the group loaded into a shiny new van that looks like it’s more likely to house a youth choir than a rock band and took off for four shows from Feb. 19-22.

Racing from Pasadena to the San Francisco suburb of Redwood City before swinging through Reno, Bend, Ore., then back through Salinas before heading home, the guys did a lot less partying than one might expect from a band on the run. But they represent a new generation of serious musicians who bring the party to the stage and try to win over roomfuls of strangers who don’t even know what just hit them.

Monheim and Gatshall have scraggly beards and shoulder-length hair that makes them look like a granola-fed jam band in the vein of The Grateful Dead. But the second that show time hits, the band surprises one and all with a hard-driving funk jam that’s impossible not to dance to. One grandma in the packed and pulsating crowd at Bend’s Silver Moon Brewing exclaims, “They’re like the lost soundtrack to the greatest blaxploitation movie ever made!”

And with that, they were on their way to one more mission accomplished. In fact, their remarkable night in Bend flipped from a near-disaster when the club’s public address system wouldn’t work until the exact moment they were scheduled to start performing at 9 p.m. sharp, to whipping the ever-growing, word-of-mouth crowd into such a frenzy that the manager offered them multiple return dates throughout the year.

“I like the fact that people can’t tell what they’re going to get when they see us take the stage,” says Monheim. “We tried for a slicker look, but it wasn’t real. It’s all about the surprise, because then they’ll remember us longer.”

The past few months have been flying by fast for The Letters Home. A PW cover story last May gave them the attention and confidence to line up a string of gigs that they had never attempted before. They enlisted Mohsin on bass and lined up a two-man horn section consisting of Herring and Clarence Witherspoon, a veteran sax player who hits the studio and LA area shows with them but isn’t quite up to the crushing pace of the road.

They’ve also built up their own burgeoning movement of local artists, whom Monheim meets through his other main gig of running the recording studio AndromiDen Recordings in Pasadena’s Bungalow Heaven residential neighborhood. On their first night of this tour, they are wedged in between two other fresh voices of the Crown City scene, singer-songwriters Rachel Oto and Julia Fairlight at the Fox Theatre in Redwood City, Fairlight’s home town, for the album release party.

“Two years ago Andrew encouraged me to bring him my album, which I was on the verge of not finishing,” recalls Fairlight, whose booming voice frequently draws comparisons to Adele. “He listened to my songs and urged me to not give up. He believed in me as an artist and ended up producing my debut album. It’s pretty cool that by helping one another we can put such beauty, hope and love into the world.”

The four-night trip through four towns in three states was filled with moments of quiet beauty mixed with butt-numbing hours of being crammed into the van. In the seven-hour trip from Reno to Bend, the vistas stretched from desert to national forests, with a lengthy jaunt alongside a pristine lake.

The terrain left band members frequently philosophical about why all the driving matters and where it might lead. DeCicco has a young son, while Herring has one on the way, lending an extra importance to making trips like this pay off.

“My son is an incredible gift and I love him more than anything, and yes, he is a big-time commitment,” says DeCicco, who is a florist and garden designer for his main living. “He definitely gives me a sense of urgency to make this band successful. Compartmentalizing my energies is a new skill I’ve had to develop. And scheduling, scheduling, scheduling.”

“In the past, I toured because it is what you’re supposed to do as a band,” says Herring, who bounds through the audience during his solos and works at the SAE Institute of Technology teaching recording engineers. “Now when I tour, I do it for my family, though it hurts me terribly to be away.”

For Mohsin, who moved with his parents from Egypt to Los Angeles as a child and works in their family business, the chance to go on tour makes him “wake up every morning feeling like I’m going to Disneyland.” Unfortunately he finds the reality of driving through fog in the dead of night or wearing wet socks in the middle of winter to be the more frequent reality.

“Nothing would make me happier than to make a career out of music, but the music business is in a sorry state right now,” says DeCicco. “Listeners want pop stars that sell sex by the truckload. And we are more in the classic-rock vein. Come to think of it, I might be better off selling dot-matrix printers. But I guess that’s the love of it; we make music because it moves us. There’s definitely a Captain Ahab vibe, and we’re hunting this damn whale that might kill us.”

The Letters Home next play at 8 p.m. April 1 for the “April Funky Fools Show” at the 5Star Bar, 267 S. Main St., Los Angeles. For more information on The Letters Home, visit thelettershome.com. For more on AndromiDen Recordings, visit Instagram.com/andromiden - Pasadena Weekly


"Pasadena Weekly Feature and Cover - May 14, 2014"

Maroon 5’s Adam Levine may brag that he has moves like Mick Jagger, but anyone who sees Pasadena-based The Letters Home knows that their lead singer, Andrew Monheim, could give Levine a run for his money. Frankly, with all the hip-shaking, high-stepping, whirling-dervish energy he displays while leading his band through rip-roaring sets of their self-described “dirty soul rock,” Monheim could solve the state’s power crisis if his energy could somehow be harnessed.

The Letters Home, not just a party band, rooting lyrics in concerns far beyond sex, drugs and rock and roll, will be displaying its electric mix of talents during its hometown debut Thursday, May 22, at the Old Towne Pub.

“I forget about myself for an hour and try to give everything I have to the audience,” says Monheim about the intense focus he displays in each show. “It’s all for them. The more they give us, the more we give back. People joke with me that they can always tell when I get lost on stage. There’s a switch inside of me that just goes off.”

As the band’s keyboardist, with Mike Gattshall on drums and Joe DeCicco on guitar and a brand-new horn section, Monheim enjoys the introspective process of writing the lyrics and crafting the melodies as well. He especially likes to write songs from the point of view of people who are lost from the official versions of history, with one song about people in El Salvador who were murdered at the hands of government assassins, and another from the perspective of a frustrated, overlooked writer.

“I collect a lot of stories from news, videos, interviews, conversations and reading,” says Monheim, who lists as influences acts ranging from Al Green, Prince and Pearl Jam to INXS and Hall and Oates. “People sometimes contact me with stories that they want told — stories that have never had a chance to come to light. I put a lot of time in making sure the lyrics and the melody serve the people in the stories. Above all, I try to keep it soulful and funky.”

“Most of my writing is reactive to the rhythm that Andrew and Mike bring me,” says DeCicco, who handles much of the instrumental grooves. “I work better when I just react.”

Monheim formed the band two years ago when he and DeCicco met while studying music at an Arizona college. After growing to hate the intense heat, they first moved to North Hollywood because they had heard it was “the mecca of recording,” but soon found themselves despising their small apartment even more.

Moving to Pasadena saved their sanity. The duo was able to move into a house and establish the AndromiDen Recordings studio inside. Described by Monheim as “a quiet place in the hills,” he notes that “bands and artists walk in and immediately get inspired to start writing and recording.”

“That’s really what sets us apart from a larger studio with more resources,” adds DeCicco, who loves everything from Rage Against the Machine and The Roots to Beethoven. “We’re focused on keeping it creative. All the gear is customized because we’re audio geeks. We build our own microphones and preamps. We mainly use vintage tube gear, and we can fix anything in-house. We repair microphones and amps for other musicians and studios as well. We also have an organic garden in the back.”

The final piece in the puzzle fell into place when Monheim invited Gattshall — whom he had previously worked with making microphones at another company — to join them.

“After two Saturdays rocking out, we knew we needed to be playing together,” says Gattshall, a jazz-fusion fanatic who lists Tool, Rush and King Crimson among his favorite bands. “The music was just writing itself. We would play 30 minutes straight and write two or three songs every time we met.”

Indeed, this is a heady time for the band musically as they prepare to release two singles this summer, following on their debut EP “Warm Ink.” But they are even more excited about the addition of the horn section to their live shows, which often include a spot-on rendition of David Bowie’s classic “Let’s Dance.”

They also made a big move in March by playing the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. They found the lengthy car rides each way to be well worth the reaction, which Monheim describes as “humbling” because the band was so surprised to receive a rave reaction from first-time listeners in the middle of the nation.

“We follow the old Iggy Pop quote, ‘We don’t care if it’s five or 5,000 people there, we’re going to have fun,’” says Monheim. “Whenever the whole crowd is really into it, it’s our best show. We played an awesome show at The Viper Room and had a blast. They had just built a catwalk into the audience and we got to run out and get closer to the audience. We also played a packed show at Rafa’s Lounge in Echo Park. There were a lot of sweaty bodies piled into the room that night and everyone in the room was moving together as one. It was unreal and we hope to do it again right here at the Old Towne Pub.”

The Letters Home performs at 11 p.m. Thursday, May 22, at The Old Towne Pub, 66 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena. Admission is free. For more information on The Letters Home, visit thelettershome.com. For more on AndromiDen Recordings, visit Instagram.com/andromiden. - Pasadena Weekly


"'Pajama Party'"

Featured House Band on LA Radio Show, 'Pajama Party' - Radio Titans Network


"Featured Artist of the Month - February 2014"

Readers poll voted The Letters Home Featured Artist of the Month (February 2014) - The Deli Magazine LA


"'Wake Up Hollywood'"

Featured Music guest on LA Radio Show, 'Wake Up Hollywood' - Radio Titans Network


"Salinas Underground Podcast"

"What do you do when a band from Pasadena stops by your city's artwalk to do a show before going on to play in San Francisco? You interview them! This is our interview with The Letters Home a Soul-Rock band from Pasadena that brought down the house at the XL Public House this Friday." - Salinas Underground


Discography

Mother Freakin' Mashups Vol 1

Streaming Songs (from the EP): http://thelettershome.bandcamp.com/album/mother-freakin-mashups-vol-1

  • 1. Wannabe (Ft Clive Aden)
  • 2. Touch (Ft Semigod)
  • 3. Money Monet (Ft Chelsea Monet)
  • 4. Civilization (Ft Andre Hando)
  • 5. Heaters (Ft Ubiquitous Love Tribe)

Dirty Soul Rock

Streaming Songs (from the Album): http://thelettershome.bandcamp.com/album/dirty-soul-rock

  • 1. The Streets
  • 2. Pegasus
  • 3. Samba Por Sangre
  • 4. Dear Amy,
  • 5. Madame Maime
  • 6. Waking Water
  • 7. Lush Green Lies
  • 8. The Streets Pt 2


Warm Ink EP

Streaming Songs (from the EP): https://soundcloud.com/thelettershome

  • 1. Dreaming In Infrared
  • 2. Newer
  • 3. Low Land
  • 4. Friendly Fire
  • 5. NIMBY




Photos

Bio

Heavily influenced by Soul, Funk, and Rock, The Letters Home have set fire to the traditional genres to create a sound that is raw, funky, and close to the heart.  Through their driving rock riffs, powerful soul styled vocals, melodic drumming, pulsing bass, and rich horn section, they pack their live performances with incredible energy and passion.

"It ain't a concert until we're sweating," Monheim (Lead Vocals, Keys) jokes about their live shows.

In September 2015, TLH debuted their groundbreaking new album/sound, Dirty Soul Rock, followed by their first US tour.  

February and March 2016 marked the beginning of their multi-volume hip-hop collaboration, Mother Freakin Mashups.  The band will be touring the US August/September 2016 promoting the new Mashups album.

http://thelettershome.bandcamp.com/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dirty-soul-rock/id1037103666











Band Members