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Swing - Americana - Rock'n'roll Revival

Born out of a love of the early years of swing, americana and rock 'n 'roll, Birch Pereira & the Gin Joints is a band whose sound transports you to the time of speakeasies, honky-tonks and roadhouses. With upright bassist and vocalist Birch Pereira at its center, the band features skilled and versatile musicians who share the love of the American song traditions and a desire to offer a fresh angle on them.

The band's debut album, Dream Man, was released independently and received the Earshot Jazz Golden Ear Award for "Northwest Jazz Recording of the Year" in 2016. The band has continued to spread their music throughout the West Coast and spent time gigging in the roots and jazz scenes of New York City and New Orleans. Their second album "Western Soul" was released in March 2018 and features western-tinged jazz and soul originals along with reinterpretations of old blues, swing and early rock 'n' roll. Fans, critics and deejays have delighted in Birch Pereira's "old soul," tenor voice, the group's new, stripped-down arrangements of musical gems from the past and Pereira's ever growing repertoire of original, yet period-evoking material.

"I love this album. I love the sound of it. I love the feel of it. I love the idea of it." - Frank Gutch Jr, of No Depression 

“A group pulsing with rockabilly, the exploratory sensibilities of jazz, and tender lyricism of country-folk, Birch Pereira and the Gin Joints offer a little something every listener. Pereira thrives in the space between styles, mixing and blending the country, folk, and rock ‘n’ roll music he was raised on with the jazz music he studied at University of Washington as a young adult.” - Alexa Peters - The Seattle Times

Vocalist of the Year Nominee, 2017, Earshot Jazz

Northwest Recording of the Year in 2016 for "Dream Man," Earshot Jazz.

Featured performers at ArtsNW & Far-WEST 2018 with appearances at Upstream, Treefort, Oak Harbor and Juan De Fuca music festivals with tv and radio appearances on Band in Seattle, Art Zone, KNKX, KBCS and King5 New Day Northwest.

Enjoy our first music video for the first cut of our debut album Western Soul filmed by the amazing Garrett Gibbons at XXX Burger and Columbia City Theatre! How Long (Until I See the Sun Again?), words and music by Birch Pereira.

VIDEO 

The Gin Joints perform with a variety of personnel and instruments, which allows the group to play venues as diverse as sit down dinner theaters to clubs, festivals and dances and over time the band has featured an ever-growing group of superb musicians based out of Seattle, New Orleans and New York City. Some of the musicians featured in the videos below are Jason Goessl/Daniel Rainard (guitar), Adrian Van Batenburg (drums), Kate Olson, Jacob Zimmerman, Steve Treseler (saxophone/clarinet), Ray Larson/Jim Sisko (trumpet) plus special guest vocalist Kate Voss (Sundae + Mr. Goessl) and Jimmie Herrod (Pink Martini).

The Quintet

The quintet, which features Birch on Bass & Vocals, Guitar, Drums, Clarinet/Saxophone and Trumpet, is one of the most popular formats of the group as their tight horn arrangements and big sound work for large theaters, clubs, dances and bigger budgets!


THE QUARTET

With one less horn player than the quintet (just saxophone/clarinet), the quartet works for venues looking for a more intimate sound that can still showcase the lovely sounds of clarinet and saxophone.


The Trio

The guitar/drums trio version of the Gin Joints is the most versatile, can play intimate rooms, parties, weddings, and travel light, while still giving you the energy and bounce of the Gin Joints sound.


The Large Group

The band has had several opportunities, from the shows Band in Seattle to Art Zone to live radio sessions to collaborate with guest vocalists like Kate Voss and Jimmie Herrod and bring on more instrumentalists like pianists/accordionists Josh Hou and fiddlers Kat Bula and Annie Ford. Below are some collaborations from those sessions that showcase the large ensemble, which can feature 6 to 8 members.


Solo

One could say the band really started in 2015 when Birch stepped out of the shadow as a sideman and began to write arrangements for solo/bass and voice. The reception was so overwhelmingly positive Birch began to realize the potential of reviving this music and thus began reaching out to other musicians to play in a band that would be soon known as the Gin Joints. Birch performs solo shows singing and accompanying himself on bass and various types of ukuleles.

 

WESTERN SOUL!

 

"I love this album. I love the sound of it. I love the feel of it. I love the idea of it".  Frank Gutch Jr. - No Depression

 

"Pereira thrives as a lead singer and frontman handling this arrangement <of St. James Infirmary>, never quite being swallowed by the grand tinges of rock and gospel that they invoke into the song. Instead, the entire band delivers their take on "St. James Infirmary" with a sort of slinking and dark agency." - Jonathan Frahm - PopMatters

 

"a heady blend of early jazz, jump blues, vintage soul, old school rock’n’roll and hillbilly boogie."
-Folk Radio UK

 

"One of the better albums to come out of the northwest this year will be Birch Pereira & The Gin Joints Western Soul. Birch’s band blends early american swing with old-time soul. Western Soul is an album full of elevating covers and expressive originals that is somehow even better than the 2016 Earshot Jazz award winning Dream Man." - American Standard Time

 

"This band, which hails from the Pacific Northwest, favors a stripped-down sound—imagine a more versatile version of Cowboy Junkies—that incorporates everything from soul to surf, and from jazz to Latin to swing. To my ears, though, the biggest influence is 50s rock/pop, which comes across in the vocals and sax work. Somehow, not only does everything work but it all seems to belong together on one album." -  Jeff Burger - The Morton Report

 
 
 

DREAM MAN

Self Released - 2016

"Over the years (and decades), there have been recurring cycles of popularity for many varieties of traditional country, early rock & roll, and “retro-swing,” sometimes driven as much by fashion as by sound musical intent. Birch Pereira and The Gin Joints however, are clearly not about shtick, gimmicks, or ironic detachment. This is a top-shelf unit of superb musicians, and on their new album Dream Man, they explore a keenly curated repertoire of classic sounds, steeped with an obvious affinity and love for the music.

Birch Pereira is an almost eerily versatile bassist, arranger, and singer, as seemingly at home with the electronic beats and synth textures of his band Theoretics as he is wandering the dusty roads of American vernacular music with The Gin Joints. It’s a fairly rare upright bass player who can sing great lead vocals while laying down a locked-in groove, but Pereira makes it sound easy. His high tenor is delicate but authoritative, and always in the pocket, and the stripped-down but superbly effective arrangements are spot on.

Able to blend Willie Dixon, Hank Williams, Fats Waller, and much more into a single tasty brew, The Gin Joints obviously have a distinctive skill at deftly exploring the sometimes treacherous seams between country, swing and the roadhouse, while finding the timeless essence of great songs from any era. Highly recommended."

AL Earshot Jazz

"Blending classic swing tunes from jazz, country and early rock 'n' roll; bassist and singer Birch Pereira & The Gin Joints have found their own kind of cool. Live in our studios, the band performed four tunes from their varied songbook, including the music of Hoagy Carmichael, Fats Waller, Elvis Presley and Hank Williams". 

- KNKX 88.5 FM

Promo photos by Jesse Codling. Click on photos to find hi-res photos for print.

Photos by Jesse Codling from the Upstream Music Festival, 2017.

Photos by Doug Oberst

 

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EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH

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As I developed my music performing career in Seattle I also dug deeply into teaching private students (bass, piano, ukulele, guitar, songwriting, music theory) and teaching group classes and workshops (from Dusty Strings Music Store and Westside Music Academy to Billings Middle School).

Elementary School: One of the most accessible and fun instruments is the ukulele. They are also highly affordable. I have considerable experience with playing and teaching multiple ukulele sizes from soprano to baritone in private and group settings. I can offer workshops for elementary teachers to learn the ukulele for use in the classroom. By accompanying themselves on the ukulele as they lead their class in song, they can more effectively have music be a part of teaching a wide range of topics. If a school has an ongoing ukulele class or is interested in starting one, i would love to help!

Middle/High School: I love teaching middle school and high school aged students about the history of American Roots music and I have designed a masterclass around teaching them to play and arrange jazz, Americana and blues merging both the traditional and modern approaches. Within this context, there is the opportunity to talk about the business of running a band, touring and other realities a musician faces when making a career out of their art.

College: While the Gin Joints tour we can stop by colleges and university music programs to teach masterclasses covering topics like songwriting and music publishing, music theory, improvisation approaches from jazz to blues to roots music, and the ins and outs of the music business.


The BAND

One could say the band began in 2015 when Birch Pereira, an upright and electric bassist known throughout the Northwest recorded a solo bass/voice version of Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out on Youtube. The response was so overwhelmingly enthusiastic Birch began to reach out to musicians to form a band, starting to play solo, duo and trio gigs around the Seattle area with guitarist Jason Goessl and drummer Adrian Van Batenburg.

After gigging around the Northwest, Birch began to record his debut album “Dream Man” with the Gin Joints and began to reach out to clarinet, saxophone and trumpet players like Jacob Zimmerman, Kate Olson, Ray Larsen, Steve Treseler and Rex Gregory to record and play larger gigs, moving the band to a quartet and quintet

After the release