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Mallory Moad gets the blues
As a musical performer, Mallory Moad has this Sybil thing going, taking on new personalities every time she starts a band.
With They Can't Hardly Playboys, she was a western swingin' gal, complete with petticoat and hat. In Scats on the Sly, she was total cool jazz.
In her latest project, Three at the Door, she's channeling the blues.
“I transform into someone else in these bands,” Moad says. “It's like a demonic possession.”
Minus the spinning head and projectile vomit, we're sure.
Music is a medium for expression, Moad says, and tapping into the blues was a needed challenge.
And the blues wasn't exactly a natural fit, she says. She comes from the world of musical theater, where songs are learned note-for-note, word-for-word. That's a very specific thing, she says, and while it worked well enough for the jazz and swing styles she'd done in the past, for this she had to change her whole mindset.
“I kind of had to learn to sing the blues,” she says.
She had help from Ron “Doc” Morse and Martin Hansen, two veteran musicians who themselves are in at least two bands each at any given time. As Moad tells it, the more bands you're in, the better your chance at finding work — or just being in front of an audience, depending on your ego level.
This bands plays Chicago-style electric blues, a mix of traditional tunes — think Edda James and Muddy Waters — and some pop tunes that they “bluesify,” Moad says.
Quick, someone check Urban Dictionary to see if that's a word.
Mostly, the band exists in practices in Moad's living room, though it debuts at this weekend's Re:FUSE Festival (they play 5 p.m. at Hero's) and Moad isn't sure exactly what's going to happen when she makes the total transformation
“There's a blues chick in there. I haven't quite seen her yet. But she's there.”
Whatever happens, it will be fun, Moad says. That can't be discounted.
“This is have-a-beer-music. It's get-up-and-dance music.”
Three At the Door@ the Re: FUSE Festival
5 p.m., Oct. 3, at Hero's