The last time I was backstage with Nick Carr, we were 11 years old and anxiously waiting to head on to Jay Leno’s plush couch and talk about our winning sixth grade science fair projects. Side stage and bar front at Providence’s The Apartment, there are decidedly less nerves and much more banter as Carr, now 26 and drummer for The Mighty Good Boys, and I sit down to talk with the rest of the band about their homegrown variety of fiery folk rock. Loyal local following and hard-kicking authenticity, the past two years have taken the six-piece rock outfit from acoustic to electric, all across the state and onto the radio airwaves.
With five of the six Mighty Good Boys (MGB) hailing from Barrington (Electric guitar/banjo player Benny Tilchin was just down the road in Providence), there is a distinct sense of homecoming at every show. More than the familiar faces, it’s the sincerity in every song, the camaraderie both on-stage and off, and the absolute lack of pretense in the MGB’s raw, rambling rock and roll. From Mike Walker’s finger picking on his homemade, honky tonk upright tub bass (often wearing overalls, no less), Jeff Kidd’s riling, bluesy harmonica, Carr’s driving drums, lead singer-songwriter Corey Millard’s gritty-edged vocals, and Travis Conaway and Tilchin’s dueling electrics, the Mighty Good Boys set will transport you down south of the Mason Dixon for an all out party. If ever there was alocal band to head out and dance to, it’s The Mighty Good Boys. Forget the head bobbing and toe-tapping, their shows always pack the house with a goodtime, swing around and stomp your feet ruckus, and the band wouldn’t have it any other way.
Strip away the stage sets and the all of the in-studio polish, and you have the basis of live music and all the ingredients of a Mighty Good Boys gig: six guys playing their hearts out, not taking themselves too seriously, and having enough fun that the whole crowd gets involved. Their charismatic band chemistry, infectious riffs and rhythms, and good humor always leave the venue slightly unkempt and wanting more.
This year is lining up to be a mighty big one for the Boys. Recently chosen as 95.5 WBRU Rock Hunt semi-finalists for their song “Chicago,” the band joined a lineup with fellow Barrington-natives Torn Shorts for a concert at Providence’s Fête on March 22. A few weeks after, they’ll be taking the stage as headliners for this year’s Brown University Folk Festival, playing alongside friends and frequent musical collaborators The Sugar Honey Iced Tea and Smith & Weeden on April 13 at Sayles Hall. The Boys are currently spending their time between gigs and day jobs in the recording studio, and hope to release their debut LP sometime this summer.