Mediocre Bad Guys began in the fall of 2005 when three friends and music buffs in Mount Airy NC – drummer Les Slate, bassist Jerry Chapman, and guitarist Gary Manfredi – started jamming on some Jack Johnson Tunes. Eventually, MBG secured a few gigs at a local coffee house, attracting larger crowds and a steadier following. With Slate’s vocals hinting at Johnson’s without appearing to imitate, Mediocre Bad Guys were on their way.
Around 2006 the band added some songs outside the Jack Johnson box (wonderful as that box is). Cover songs were chosen that played into the band’s lineup, as well as tunes that merged well with Slate’s pure vocals and the more rock-leaning vocals of Chapman. Working meticulously on the tunes, MBG sought not to just “play” others’ songs but to recreate them in a style that paid homage to the original while remaining their own. Some of MBG’s favorite artists to cover are: Ryan Adams, Tom Petty, Rolling Stones, Sister Hazel, Jack Johnson and countless classics from the 60’s and 70’s New songs are added all the time.
Overt the years the band’s lineup has evolved, with Slate and Chapman remaining at the foundation. Steve Lindsley joined in on keyboard, guitar/mandolin and vocals; and Doug Davis on guitar, keyboard and vocals. In 2010, as a solid foursome, MBG began a concentrated effort of writing and recording original material; leading to the launch of the “Monthly Free Download” project in September 2011. With their tremendous songwriting chops, an album is certainly in their future.
To date, MBG has delighted audiences at both premier nightclubs, festival, and private parties all across the Triad of North Carolina and beyond. They’ve shared the stage with The Little River Band as well as Bobby Keys, sax player for the Rolling Stones. At the same time, they’ve played in living rooms and in quarters so cramped that the keyboardist had to climb over the railing with a ladder. But that’s okay – because when it comes to the Mediocre Bad Guys, it’s always about the music. As it damn well should be.
Les Slate – Vocals & drums Steve Lindsley – Piano/Organ, guitar & vocals
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