Originally a two-piece acoustic project headed by Galen Stickles and Gabe Smiley, Asheville NC’s Armadilla was fully formed in October 2015 with the addition of brothers and Hagen and Harrison Johnston. The deep, emotional songwriting of Stickles (Keys, Vocals) and Smiley (Guitar, Bass, Vocals) was brought fully to life with the additions of Hagen (Drums) and Harrison (Bass, Guitar, Vocals). Drawing influence from folk, funk, blues and R&B, Armadilla can not be confined to the indie-rock label. The band has gained a local reputation for intriguing original tunes with soaring harmonies as well as their takes on songs by their musical influences, including Modest Mouse, The National, and Death Cab for Cutie. Since their inception, Armadilla’s local following has snowballed into a mighty family of supporters. Their self-titled debut EP, recorded by local engineer/musician Ted Marks and released in May 2017, is available on bandcamp and Spotify. In the Summer of 2017 the band added Chris Wallen (guitar) to complete the current 5-piece Armadilla lineup.
THE MOBROS are Kelly & Patrick Morris. The name, “THE MOBROS” simply stands for “Morris Brothers.” But while the chosen name for this electric songwriting duo may be simple, their songs are not so simplistic. Growing up in rural South Carolina the brothers’ learned to draw from their surroundings, blending the sounds of Soul, Rock & Roll, and Americana. Their music is both decidedly dark, and yet light in nature.
What is immediately gripping about the brotherly music is their flourishing harmonies, their melodic layers stacked seemingly effortlessly, and their intriguing style of lyricism. From early on Kelly and Patrick loved to sing. For fun they would often record themselves on an old tape recorder that they shared emulating their favorite artists and gradually leading them to record their own original music. By listening to performers like The Everly Brothers, Andy Williams, Michael Jackson, THE BAND, Sam Cooke, and the Bee Gees; THE MOBROS discovered their fondness for vocal harmonies.
To expand and support their vocal harmonies as a duo, Kelly, creates a labyrinth of notes with his classical guitar and fingerstyle technique while playing dual guitar and bass parts. Patrick, who is sponsored by Anchor Drums, adds his inflections of “in the pocket” Jazz, Soul, and Rock & Roll drumming technique rounding out this virtuosic duo. Kelly and Patrick began studying their respective instruments from a young age, Kelly (Guitar), and Patrick (Drums) quickly gravitated to playing together, playing a range of music by THE BAND, The Beatles, Marvin Gaye, Eric Clapton, and later performing in the jazz band at the High School that they attended in Columbia, SC.
In 2013 they were hand picked by the Blues legend B.B. King, to be the touring opener for a few of his Southeastern Summer tour dates, and shortly after that they released their debut album “Walking With A Different Stride”.
Recently they were asked to record a live session for the prestigious music streaming site known as DAYTROTTER, which has come to be known as a rite of passage for up and coming and established acts.
Along with these other credits they have also played their fair share of festivals, for example, St. Pats in Savannah GA, Atlanta’s Sweetwater 420 Fest, Greenville’s Artistphere International Art Festival, Eco Fest in Jacksonville, FL, Earth Day Festival in Myrtle Beach, SC, Columbia’s Blues Festival, the Carolina Homegrown Music Festival, Fall For Greenville Music Festival, Sautee Jamboree in Sautee Nacoochee, Ga and the Free Times Music Crawl. About 40,000 revelers were at St. Pat’s in Five Points when THE MOBROS played a headlining slot in 2012.