The Story of Rowdy O'Reilly starts about 2010 in Manistee, Michigan when I went to see an old friend of mine (Shaun Anchak) play in an Irish trio pub band called the Blackhouse Monks. I had played in a band years before with Shaun when he lived in the Pontiac area playing mostly pop rock. I had no idea what an experience it was going to be when I first heard the Blackhouse Monks play. At that time Irish Music was new to me but instantly I took to this trio's rowdy renditions of Irish pub drinking songs. Even though I never heard these songs before I was able to sing along with the band and everyone else in the place that night.
Years later after the Monks had broke up, Shaun formed an eclectic duo with Melonie Steffes in the Traverse City Area called Saldaje and I formed an island summer band called Sonovabeach back home in Waterford with Patrick Fitzgibbon and the Grodzicki brothers. Sonovabeach took the attitude of the Monks and applied it to surf/island music. Once Sonovabeach's steel pan player left to study in Africa the band broke up finding it impossible to replace someone of Patrick's abilities.
Once the beach band idea was dead I did not hesitate for a moment to form an Irish band using the same winning formula that worked so well with Sonovabeach and the Blackhouse Monks.
And that's how we became Rowdy O'Reilly.
Asher Todorovsky (Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin, Harmonica, Vocals) was born in Pontiac, Mi.. He started playing guitar after seeing the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show. The British invasion and garage rock were his early influences.
Comedy and the appeal toward the outrageous lead him to join up with the apocalyptic be-bop group the Tulsa City Truckers in the late 70's with members of the Ragnar Kvaran Group. The band's claim to fame was playing at Bob Zilli's Latino Ballroom backing up the late great Frank Zappa protege Larry "Wildman" Fischer" and having it's release of the single 45 Jonestown Kool-aid making the play list on Dr. Demento's Radio show. Asher also plays in a renaissance world folk band Greenfire and Agave a latin jazz quartet. In the past he played with Rabble an original contemporary pop rock group and island music with Sonovabeach. Two of Sonovabeach's originals, "Jobbie Nooner" and "Beach Party" were used in the locally shot movie entitled "Jobbie Nooner-Gull Island."Currently five of their originals can be heard and bought on Beachfront Radio www.beachfrontradio.
The Rowdy O'Reilly Band now has seventeen original Irish/pirate songs (Rowdy O'Reilly, Whiskey Rum Loose Women, Me Old Fiddle, Sinclair's Irish Pub, Ungrateful Son, If Not For Ireland, Drinking way too much, Stand Fast and Ready, Tiny Ship, This Ol' Pirate, Crack Jenny Tea Cup, Cold Beer, May The Road Rise Up To Meet You,The English Cook, Red Shirt, Brown pants and Captain Jack.) We plan to release on a CD soon with some other classic Irish pub tunes.
Jeremy Cohen (Guitar and vocals) Jeremy is from Birmingham Mi and comes to us via Los Anglese California where he played in the highly sucessful Irish band "The Lads". Although Jeremy is not Irish, everyone else in The Lads was, hence he knew what every word in the song "If not for Ireland" translated into american english. Jeremy vocals and knowledge of Irish music are a welcome additions to the band.
Tom Keyzer (Bass, Vocals) was born and raised in Saint Clair Shores,Michigan. Tom started playing bass in 7th grade and by the 9th grade music had become the center of his life. While in Jr. High Tom played in Cromwell, one of the first pop rock bands to use horns in the area. They played covers of Blood Sweat and Tears, Earth Wind and Fire and others with a rocking horn sound. In High School Tom briefly studied upright bass under Steven Edwards of the Detroit Symphony and also played in a 10 piece swing jazz band named Now and Then.
Recently Tom spent three years studying bass with Chuck Bartels (Thornetta Davis, Betty LeVette) and has been playing blues with various bands in the Ann Arbor area and in Royal Oak.
Bill Doral (Drums, Vocals) Bill is from Rochester Michigan and has played in 1776 later known as Tea. His group covered the Birds song that became a hit single for them on the commercial air waves, "Jesus is Alright". It fell from the charts when the Doobie Brothers covered the same song soon after and radio stations and major record companies pushed that version.