The Sugar Thieves (formerly The Mikel Lander and Meridith Moore Band)
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The Sugar Thieves (formerly The Mikel Lander and Meridith Moore Band)

Band Blues Americana


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"Burgeoning blues "Local pair grabs the spotlight""

Although Phoenix isn't exactly known as the biggest blues 'bergs in the nation, a great deal of talent is present in our town. And a couple of the names on the rise are Mikel Lander and Meredith Moore. The guitarist and songstress pair won the most recent Arizona Blues Showdown and are surely destined for great success. They've got something more of a rootsy, Americana-like feel to their music, with obvious dashes of delta blues. Lander's hardscrabble voice sound akin to Tom Waits and Moore's vocals are simply sweet.

- Phoenix New Times

"Review: Friday at the McDowell Mountain Music Festival"

Mikel Lander,Meridith Moore & Friends - By 1:30 in the afternoon, we were seated front & center in our lawn chairs, Sierras in hand, and ready for some quality tunes. Local act Mikel, Meredith & Friends did not disappoint. Mikel Lander is a talented singer and guitarist from Tempe with a strong and natural voice that channels the early bluesmen and Tom Waits. Meridith Moore is no slouch with the pipes either, a terrific blues singer who is a great complement to Mikel.
The band played some originals from a forthcoming CD (release party coming up at the Rhythm Room on May 24th), and some covers – highlights for me were Curtis Mayfield’s “People Get Ready” and a rollicking “16 Tons” – a song that really sums up their style - raw, blues-soaked, sort of old-timey. Good stuff. I’ll be checking them out in town.

- IckMusic

"Phoenix Blues Society – Blues Blast Festival – Feb 21, 2009"

The lineup for this year’s Blues Blast started with The Sugar Thieves, winners of the 2008 Arizona Blues Showdown and finalists at the 25th IBC in Memphis. When I arrived at the Mesa Amphitheatre, Meredith Moore was already belting out her big blues sound that stopped me in my tracks. She reminded me of a combination of Susan Tedeschi, Janiva Magness (the headliner), and Danielle from Trampled Under Foot. I was duly impressed!

- Blues Blast Magazine-Review and Photos by Marilyn Stringer

"Bob Corritore's Blues-Newsletter"

Kim Danielson and I arrived in Memphis on Wednesday and checked into our hotel before heading to Sun Studio, where the Phoenix Blues Society's IBC contestant, The Mikel Lander/Meridith Moore Band, were recording some tracks. Mikel had invited me to play some harmonica as a special guest on one song. How great it was to be at such a historic recording studio where so many legendary greats have made groundbreaking music. It was an honor to be asked by the band to participate in such a special occasion on the eve of their competition. We enjoyed seeing studio chief James Lott, who we had met at Sun a few years earlier.

- Bob Corritore


"The Soulo Sessions" was released in May of `08 and is available @

Their current project, yet to be released, was recorded live in February `09 at Sun Studios in Memphis, TN.



The Sugarthieves came together through a simple twist of fate, a love for good music, and a passion that these five musicians share to take their music to the next level.
Mikel Lander has a voice and guitar style that will take you back to the front porch pickin’ ways of the south. A native of Arizona, he won the state blues showdown in 2006.
Meridith Moore has a soulful voice that grabs you, and an energetic stage presence that demands your attention. She was born and raised in Omaha Nebraska and has recorded with Scotty Johnson of the Gin Blossoms.
Ray Thiry (Upright bass) hails from Kansas City and started his first jazz group at the age of 15. Mr. Thiry earned a music education degree from Arizona State in 2007.
Shea Marshall (Saxes/Keys) is well known for his uniquely universal approach to the keyboards and saxophone, and his ability to play multiple saxes simultaneously always gets a rise from crowds. He is currently working with 'Papa' John DeFrancesco.
David Libman (drums), known affectionately by some as “Creamy,” may be small in stature but creates a large, distinctive sound behind a kit. David’s early training in music and musical theory have lent to his style and ability to write parts that accentuate and let the music breathe. He has played venues all over the country and recorded in many studios around the Phoenix valley.
Together, these five talented musicians combine writing styles and musical influences to create an innovative, fresh, and original approach at Blues/Roots/Americana.