Spencer Pheil Band
SPENCER PHEIL BAND: AN INSTRUMENTAL PROJECT
Spencer Pheil, the current guitarist and songwriter for Stable Shakers and former guitarist for The Hello Strangers, plays with no reservations. Each performance demands the audience embark on a journey through instrumental phrases that are carefully crafted yet free from definition. Pheil's immense guitar skills are shown in a refreshingly understated, yet beautiful subtlety that slow cooks audiences into a tasty face-melting auditory experience. Recently, Spencer Pheil Band released a full length album “Thunder Smile” in January 2019. The album features 9 songs written and performed by Spencer Pheil.
From a young age Pheil's connection to music and the guitar was evident, with strong influences by his father, a full time musician from well before Pheil's birth. Years later, college-bound Pheil attended his first Phish show in 1999 and dove headfirst into a love affair with improvisation - specifically its elements of jazz and transformation in live music. Pheil spent the next decade playing through his twenties in bands that emphasized the elements of jam, including bands London File and Mightychondria. As his journey continued, he soon found himself joining The Hello Strangers in 2011, an Americana Folk act that demanded Pheil's attention to turn towards classic country interpretations of the guitar. His next years would be spent dedicating immense time to learning the structure and techniques of the great guitar pickers such as Chet Atkins, Danny Gatton, and Les Paul.
Enter present day, and Pheil finds himself bridging the styles of jazz, country, folk, and roots music and doing it in his own way. He is joined by long-time friends and distinguished players including Tommy Hoy on bass, Jim Aguzzi on drums, and Dave Hadley on pedal steel, who bring their own phrases to the musical conversation. The ensemble is known for spending vast time playing with the building blocks of their music,and at some points, breaking those into pieces and fabricating new ones.
Pheil knows that the music is not meant to be put on an assembly line - each performance is hand-crafted. Audiences should expect to be taken through deepening levels of interpretive jams through every show they attend. Pheil offers no guarantees what he will pursue next, but knows that connection formed with audiences will be long lasting.
Spencer Pheil has shared the stage with Jim Lauderdale, Larry Campbell, Billy Strings, Jon Stickley Trio, the McCrary Sisters, Doug Seegers, Trout Steak Revival, Wild Adriatic, Robert Earl Keen, Seldom Scene, Quebe Sisters, Stray Birds, Hoots & Hellmouth and more.
REVIEW OF "THUNDER SMILE”:
Spencer Pheil Band released its new album “Thunder Smile”, which features 11 instrumental tracks, including 9 original works from Spencer Pheil, current guitarist for Stable Shakers, and former guitarist for The Hello Strangers.
Peter Jones at WTJU had the following to say about the album:
"A smile always comes to my face when a great instrumental album arrives at WTJU. The new Spencer Pheil Band album, "Thunder Smile", does just that and then some. These musicians blend jazz, country, folk, roots and a whole lot more with their own wonderful spin."
WTJU Folk Director
Host of Folk & Beyond