Thursday, November 6, 2003
Local rock band Honey Hush indulges in every rock n'' roll cliche in the book. Lead singer Troy O''Shann struts around the stage in leather pants and talks to the ladies in the audience. Guitarist Bob Pavao is not afraid to play a lengthy guitar solo. Bassist Mike Holland wears a sleeveless vest. In the middle of one song, drummer Charles Emlay breaks into a drum solo. Then, O''Shann introduces the members of the band, one at a time, to big applause. The group plays it up with so much enthusiasm that it feels like you are seeing all of this cliched stuff for the first time.
"We''re not breaking any boundaries here," O''Shann says over a pint at London Bridge Pub. "We are not trying to do anything new. We are just trying to do it good."
Honey Hush formed at the beginning of last year, when O''Shann promised his buddy, local impresario Brad Mallory, that he would perform at the 2003 Erotic Art Show. There was one small problem: O''Shann did not have a band. He had been playing with guitarist Pavao, and the two recruited Emlay and Holland from the Cosmic Blues Experience.
Without any songs, the group did what a lot of great rock bands have done: they plundered the blues catalogue. Their set at the Erotic Art Show was filled with their unique takes on old blues tunes. "We kind of Van Halenized them," O''Shann says.
The guys were all seasoned performers--O''Shann had played with Los Angeles rock bands D.C. Sparks and Spiced Ice, while Pavao is credited with co-writing "All Wound Up," which of course appeared on Quiet Riot''s Down to the Bone. But, more importantly, all the band members realized they had a similar vision. "The greatest part about our band is we fit," O''Shann says. "We all believe Jimi Hendrix is god."
Though cover songs from classic rockers like Led Zeppelin and Hendrix currently fill up most of their sets, Honey Hush is starting work on an album filled with almost all originals. "We have some interest from some independent labels already," O''Shann says.
Currently, Honey Hush is known for their live shows. O''Shann, who performs with a wireless microphone, regularly leaves the stage to dance with women in the audience or belt out songs from on top of a table. Emlay gets so excited on some songs that the drummer stands up behind his drum kit.
Though O''Shann is clearly excited about Honey Hush, the charismatic singer is able to acknowledge his group''s limitations. "We are the second best band in the world," he says. "After Kiss."
Honey Hush plays Bluefin Billiards, 685 Cannery Row, Monterey, Friday, 9pm. No cover. 375-7000.