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dead pioneers

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“When is the last time you really celebrated? Music’s all about celebration, you know? Blues, Folk, Country, – all the old music is so full of celebration - and many times it’s rejoicing to get through real hard times. Back when there were slaves toiling away, singing old southern gospel songs, they had so much to lament but they just sang their way to freedom… even if it was only for a few moments on an emotional level. Joyous times are always filled with musical celebration, but the down times it’s the same too. Maybe you’re celebrating the passing on of a loved one ‘cause you know they’re heading to a better place. Maybe you’re singing a song of despair that might sound all but hopeless - but the thing is, your soul is still celebrating. The songs coming out of you – that’s your way of letting it go. That’s your way of celebrating… celebrating the release of that pain.” This was the first long sentence to come from the singer of Los Angeles’s Dead Pioneers – B - no sooner than 2 minutes after making my acquaintance.

Dimly lit, red, hanging, lights and dark hardwood beams surround the two guitar/banjo players of Dead Pioneers (“B” and “H-mas” as they are known). Huddled together in the back room of a password only speakeasy bar in LA’s seedy, Koreatown dristict – the muffled sounds of Neil Young coming from the jukebox - these two look eerily like brothers.

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