Stumbler's Week Part 2: Jeff Myrfield
Who are you? Jeff Myrfield
Where are you? Vancouver
Primary instrument? Keys
Solo or in a band (include current or recent band name)? The Stumblers Inn
First instrument? Piano
First public performance? I think I was 10? It was a Royal Conservatory Recital. The first time we all were together as The Stumbler’s Inn, then known as The Stumbler’s Band, was at Malarky’s. It was a small cafe that doesn’t exist anymore in downtown Vancouver. The stage was about the size of a picnic table. Although the first time we all played together was in Chuck’s parents basement with another great friend of mine Kevin Dwyer who I personally consider the fifth Stumbler. He was the one who got us all together as a band known as 8-Track back in highschool.
Stage fright? Not really; more anxious to actually get on stage.
Favourite Show: There’s a few to choose from. There is the Meat Bird party’s where basically 250 – 350 people from Parksville/Qualicum area get together at a secret ranch while we plary and party it up from the evening to dawn. But I would have to choose the very first Green Mountain Festival in Nanaimo. Really any of the Green mountain Festivals were great but at the first one there was a massive jam with all the bands involved, Some of the bands aren’t with us anymore due to various reasons, Hotel Lobbyists, No Horses, and so that makes it even more special. Thank you very much James Wood for making all of that possible.
Least Favourite Show: We’ve played some great shows and some bad ones, where nobody but the bar staff were there, but this one takes the cake. We played a show at Richards on Richards once as a part of an Emergenza talent find/competition. We first met up with this group already thinking that it was a scam but really what did we have to lose. When you’re starting out you want exposure from anywhere. Plus to get to that show you had to go through a couple lesser shows and try to sell off as many tickets as possible. I can understand that. I have a little bit of a harder time coming to terms with not seeing any of the money from any of the tickets that you sold to come to a show that you’re performing at but such is the business. So, anyways, at the Richards on Richards show. The way to move on to the “next round”, another show at another location, was explained to us as the band who drew the most appeal. E.I. the loudest or most appeal from the audience. So ya, there was a couple bands there, all the leading candidates from the previous preliminary rounds, and the stumble fans were in full force. The other bands had brought all their representative fans as well. All different styles of bands from heavy metal to pop punk, to even glam metal. I’m not going to slam any of the other bands because that’s not what it was about. It wasn’t a “my band is better than your band deal” because every band was different and who’s to say what style is better anyways? But I will say that when we hit the stage there wasn’t anyone sitting down. Chants of “Stumbler” were ringing from the crowd. No other band had as much reaction. When we were done the other bands were coming up to us and conceding victory. So what happened? Well of course we didn’t make it though. The “judges” picked a band, even though they said it was up to the audience, that was more to their liking shall we say. They were a band that was easily manipulative and their sound was pretty generic of course. The company kept all our money and any investment we made into them. Of course. That’s what made it the worst. Now here’s the kicker, and this reaction may have vaulted it into one of the better shows. When the final results were announced (everyone was chanting “Stumbler” by the way) they declared the other band the winners. What happened next was pure anarchy and it all started from one chair being thrown from the balcony at the stage. After that chair took flight several more followed. It was a gong show riot. No violence towards each other but directed purely at the stage. The promoters made a mad dash to leave, with all their money of course, leaving the small group of bar staff to fend off the crowd. There was maybe one bouncer and maybe two female bartenders. The bar destined to close that year was trashed. No joke!
Least favourite music story? There’s a few, The George Harrison, my sweet lord, court case is one. Agreeing with that verdict is saying that the doo wop sound is only the Chiffons to own. Also the Payola scandal, not like it doesn’t go on still, disgusts me.
Favourite band/musician (at the moment)? I’ve been listening to a lot of stuff the past little while. New bands I’m listening to: Black Keys, Aggrolites, Shiloh Lindsey. I have a multiload of various artists on my playlist but those are some of the more recent artists.
Favourite band/musician (all time)? The Beatles go without saying, think everybody has them down don’t they? My first rock album was AC/DC’s “High Voltage”, also big influences Floyd, Doors, CCR, Stones, Rush. Tons more I could write out. I would like to mention one of the great piano players of all time though, Fats Waller; the guy was a genius and played in a time where his genius was overlooked. I don’t know if I would be the same person if I hadn’t been brought up listening to his music.
Ten years from now, where will you be (perfect answer)? Hopefully playing music and getting paid for making albums
Ten years from now, where will you be (probable answer)? Playing music, and making albums. Making a living off of it is still up in the air.
The Stumbler’s Inn play Friday, August 6th, at The ANZA Club in Vancouver. It is the first of the “Sound Lounge Presents” concert series and the release party for their new album, “Get It Right”. Shiloh Lindsey and Mellisa Mills open.
For music/musician related entries, please click HERE