Jim Drake’s Entertainment Blog: Perfectly good Broken Down Guitars

Musicians are known for breaking things. The other week, I helped out my friends in the Liberty Bond Jug Band, a band, by the way, that technically shouldn’t even need electricity to play music — and by the end of the gig, we had one questionably-functioning pre-amp and another guitar with only five strings left.

That said, I think it’s appropriate that AJ, Stacie, and Lilli from the band Broken Down Guitars — who will be in town for the first time on Aug. 16 — introduce themselves and show us how they, seasoned musicians in their own right, really get things broken down.

Briefly describe your band and what the audience can expect at the show.

Broken Down Guitars is a multi-genre act that is generally hard to categorize. At different times we play blues, funk, and country, although we are mostly a rock and roll band. When we play we bring high energy and danceable music. We like to party and we love it when the fans come to party with us. The most important thing to us is that our fans have fun at our show! - Stacie Johnson

It sounds like you guys have a lot of original material on your album, “Passports.” Is writing songs a group effort or do you rely on one particular member?

Everyone in BDG has written songs and it shows on the album. We all have very different influences in our writing that range from experimental rock, to folk, to grunge. We try and incorporate all of our members styles and tastes into our music. We are musically all very different but we like that. It keeps it interesting and original. - Stacie Johnson

The band bios say that each member has a lot of different musical experiences. At what point did you guys know that you had a band sound that everyone was happy with and could decide to make a go of it?

BDG has had a slow evolution and has not always been made up of the same members. The band started out with Stacie and I just jamming around the campfire. We decided that it would be fun to play some open mics. After that, a few other people decided that it would be fun to play with us and it just grew from there. The seminal moment in our development definitely came in 2012 when we entered the Central Oregon Last Band Standing competition and took home the title. That signaled to us that we had something special and that we wanted to go all the way with it. Since that time we've been building a fan base and hitting the road. - AJ Blum

Your band name is Broken Down Guitars, but when I listen to your music, nothing seems to be broken! How did you decide on that name?

Unfortunately for us, the name is not just a name but an actual description. We seem to break every piece of equipment that we own at one point or another. We've thought at times that we should rename ourselves Perfectly Functioning Guitars just to break the curse of the Broken Down name. - Lilli Worona

Are you planning a next recording project and will it be along the same lines as “Passports?”

We are planning to get back into the studio this winter with our second project tentatively named "Beer full of Fridge." It will be similar in style to the first album but will largely be focused on being a fun party album. The album is already written and now we're in the process of polishing in up and raising funds for the project. The only drawback is that we will have to curtail our live shows for a few months which is really what our passion is. - AJ Blum

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