The harmonious-belting voices and acoustic-blues sound of The Murray Brothers will take no prisoners when they debut at Cooldog Concert Series on Saturday, Feb. 11. The intimate house concert begins at 7:30 p.m. and the band will share the bill with Sweet Hellfire Pickles.
During the mid-1990s, Adam Murray and his half-brother and bandmate, Derek, really began to bond for the first time. Until that point, it was difficult for the siblings to connect with each other since Derek, 30, is 17 years Adam’s junior. Nonetheless, when Derek earned his drivers license at 16, he’d drive from Charlotte, N.C., (where he still lives), to Myrtle Beach, S.C. to see Adam play gigs with his former band: The Amazing Carnies.
Eventually the brothers would jam together and Adam (the 1983 prom king of Dover High School) recognized his little brother not only had chops, but also took a liking to playing the guitar.
IF YOU GO
WHAT The Murray Brothers and Sweet Hellfire Pickles
WHEN 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 11
WHERE Cooldog Concert Series, house concert in northern Kent County (address provided with RSVP)
COST $15; $10 for those under 18 and active military
So he took him under his wing.
“He was picking around on the guitar,” Adam said. “He didn’t have any guidance and didn’t know where to take it. I showed him what I knew and it kind of rolled from there.”
By 2005, Adam had divorced his wife, quit The Amazing Carnies, and relocated from Myrtle Beach to Charlotte, moving closer to his brother and father. Adam was able to turn his lemons into lemonade, as he and Derek began playing a flood of shows in the area and “making a good living,” Adam recalled.
Band of ‘Brothers’
The band’s original songs (which are penned by Adam) tell a variety of stories ranging from feel-good tunes about hanging out, to drug addiction and its pit falls.
Adam says the song about addiction (“Raw Deal”) was written about 20 years ago, yet remains his “strongest [song] to date.” He said it has the potential to “make [addicts] think about what they’re doing to themselves.”
In concert, the Murray Brothers’ aggressive strumming and boisterous singing delivers a ferocity of sound you wouldn’t expect from your typical acoustic duo, let alone one that plays while seated.
“We usually sit in chairs when we play,” said Adam, adding he and Derek alternate between singing. “We’re our own rhythm section; we stomp our feet when we play.”
Page 2 of 2 - The band’s greatest strength includes their organic chemistry.
“We have a natural harmony,” Adam said. “We don’t even have to try.”
The band has had to lean on this quality since Adam moved back to Dover a few years ago, to care for his ailing mother. Adam began recording for his new solo project: “Adam Murray: I’ve Tried Everything,” at Digital Street Studio last week. The album is slated for a late spring release.
Though he doesn’t get a chance to play with Derek often, Adam is confident the band wont skip a beat at Cooldog, as both brothers have kept busy playing shows in their respective states.