The Sprague Brothers
Thursday, 10 May 2007 - courtesy: www.thecherrycreeknews.com
The music of the Sprague Brothers travels back to a simpler, less-complicated world, when
the most important things were girls, cars and having fun! It's also a time in which the
music scene was less constricted as well, where the lines between rock 'n' roll, pop,
rhythm & blues and surf music intertwined, creating sounds that made for exciting
listening and dancing.
Over the last decade, a similar free-wheeling musical atmosphere has existed on the West
Coast, fueled primarily by the roots-rock sound of rockabilly, honky-tonk and swing, and
exemplified by High Tone's Big Sandy and his Fly-Rite Boys, Deke Dickerson and the
Eco-fonics and Johnny Dilks and His Visitacion Valley Boys. Now, you can add The Sprague
Brothers to the list of the artists taking the roots of American music and creating a
unique, vibrant sound.
The brothers are Frank (the elder Sprague) on vocals and guitar, and Chris (the younger
Sprague) on vocals and drums. Music has been a big part of the boys lives since their
early years, with each having started playing guitar and drums, respectively, at age five.
Their father was a trumpet player, who instilled in them a love of music as they grew up
in their dual home bases of Wichita Falls, Texas, and Anaheim, California. In their late
teens, the brothers took out on the road, touring from Texas west to California in the
late 1980's. Their talent and enthusiasm soon won them such fans as Dan Aykroyd, who saw
them on an L.A. TV show in 1993 and cast them as guitar-playing brother cops for a TV
pilot which also starred future "Nanny," Fran Drescher.
While rooted in the rockabilly of Billy Holly (they are distant relatives) and the
harmonies of The Everly Brothers, on their debut CD, Let The Chicks Fall Where They May,
The Sprague Brothers explore those styles as well as British invasion pop-rock, Texas rock
(e.g. The Bobby Fuller Four), surf instrumentals and more. One of the album's highlights
is "Battle of the Bands," a tribute to other Southern California retro-rock bands that the
Spragues have been performing with over the last two years. When The Sprague Brothers
performed the song in 1997 as the opening act for the Cherry Poppin' Daddies in New
Orleans, legend has it that the Daddies were inspired to write "Zoot Suit Riot."
Fans of Deke Dickerson will recognize Chris Sprague as the man who's occupied the
drummer's seat in the Eco-Fonics for the past six months. Deke returns the favor on the
new CD, playing bass and guitar on several cuts; likewise, other guests include Randy
Fuller (of The Bobby Fuller Four) on bass; Los Straitjacket Eddie Angel on guitar and
Jeremy Wakefield of The Lucky Stars (and Biller & Wakefield fame) on pedal steel guitar.
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