Sweet Harlots to play McMenamins June 24 (press release)

This is a free show at McMenamins.

Special guest opener Shireen Amini

Less than a year after the Sweet Harlots debut at McMenamins Old St. Francis School in Bend, Oregon, the all-girl acoustic/indie/alt/chamber-pop band has a whole new lineup and sound that just might knock you off your feet if you come expecting a sound as soft and saccharine as their name implies.

For the first time ever, the Harlots will be playing with a man on stage. Bassist Patrick Pearsall will join the Harlots at McMenamins for a performance that promises to be more rock than folk. Patrick joins the Harlots at the request of percussionist Shireen Amini, who insisted the band bring in a bass player to lock in her drum kit with Laurel’s guitar. Though the Harlots were at first reluctant, they figured if that is what is was going to take to get the girl (Shireen), Patrick was in.

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Singer/songwriter and guitarist Laurel Brauns still fronts the band and continues to take Sweet Harlots performances in different directions with a moody mix of eerie original ballads, high-powered drinking songs and a few 80’s girl pop covers thrown in at the finale. Sam Pheifle of the Portland Phoenix (Maine) says, "She has, like Erin McKeown a voice that knocks you over with a little bit of carnival mania. Or maybe she’s like Regina Spektor, with a range that’s wonderful, but full of angles, jagged edges, nooks and crannies. You can live inside of that voice."

Cellist Amy Mitchell joined the Harlots six months ago. After a friend of a friend forwarded Laurel’s posting on Craig’s List-SEEKING FEMALE CELLIST-and the two decided to meet. only to find they were practically next-door neighbors. Amy’s boyfriend, Henry Abel of Webcyclery, is the band’s official roadie, and Amy and Henry spend many summer weekends making headlines with their tandem mountain bike racing pursuits (including a recent victory at Pickett’s Charge! here in Bend). Amy has been playing with the Central Oregon Symphony for seven years and has also shared the stage with indie rock darlings, Yo La Tengo.

Mandolin player Molly Grove is the band’s only Bend native and is known in Bend’s athletic community for her recent win of King & Queen of the Cone (an Alpine Touring race up and down Mt. Bachelor-she was the queen, of course) and her recent "first female pair" finish at the PPP with Suzanne King. She has only recently taken up the mandolin, but if her dedication to music is anything like her dedication to sports, she’ll likely be playing like Grisman in no time.

Who: The Sweet Harlots: Laurel Brauns, Amy Mitchell – Cello, Molly Grove – Mandolin

Guest Harlots: Shireen Amini – percussion and opening the show!
Patrick Pearsall – bass

What: Performing at McMenamins Old St. Francis School in Father Luke’s Room. All ages. Free. Get there early for a table.

When: June 24, 2009. 7 p.m.

Info: www.sweetharlots.com
Direct Link to Event: http://www.mcmenamins.com/index.php?loc=98&id=782&eventid=71971