"If you add up the numbers in 2015, you get eight," says Danny Burns, singer, guitarist, songwriter, and numerologist for Miami garage rock band Grey 8s, when asked about his plans for the upcoming year.
The group began in Dania, where Burns and drummer Andres Bedoya formed the foundation of a church band. According to the guitarist, it didn't take long for them to realize their musical tastes and religion might not be a holy union.
"We weren't down with all the Christian Baptist rules," he admits. "They looked down on us listening to the Beatles and Black Sabbath. So we stopped playing for the church because we didn't want a double life."
With some prodding, Burns admits the schism wasn't as clean as he may make it sound. "Actually, we didn't let the church know we were quitting for a year so we could use their facilities. We recorded the album using the mic the pastor uses for his sermons."
That untitled album is not streaming, nor available on vinyl, iTunes, or CD, because Burns says he and his bandmates wanted to make their music more mysterious. It is only available on cassettes, released by Cheap Miami and sold at Grey 8s shows, including January 17 at Kill Your Idol and January 21 at Bardot.
Of course, fans will have to look elsewhere for the Walkman or boom box to play that audio tape. But anyone who can hunt down yesteryear's technology will find muffled garage rock reminiscent of the groups that inspired Burns and his buddies' band name.
"Andres and I were thinking of two piece bands we liked. The most obvious ones were the White Stripes and the Black Keys, so we went in the middle," explains Burns about Grey. And what about the 8? "We liked the infinity symbol, so we flipped it on its side."
They also added a third member, bassist László Piringer, in part, according to the guitarist, "so someone else could keep the rhythm."
In this year that adds up to eight, the Grey 8s already have a tour of Florida and some dates in Chicago lined up, but they're dreaming beyond American borders.
"It's very far fetched, but we're trying to get shows in Hungary," Burns says. "Laszlo is from there. He says he can set it up. I'll be happy to get out there and just play on the street."
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With Perro Negro. Presented by Cheap Miami Records. Saturday, January 17. Kill Your Idol, 222 Española Way, Miami Beach. The show starts at 10p.m. and there's no cover. Ages 21 and up. Call 305-534-1009 or visit facebook.com/killyouridolmiami.
Grey 8s. With DJ Ynot. Wednesday, January 21. Bardot, 3456 N. Miami Ave., Miami. The show starts at 10 p.m. and there's no cover. Ages 21 and up. Call 305-576-7750 or visit bardotmiami.com.
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