Grey Rocks to perform Tuesday: Acoustic Wilton spawns acoustic band
A new band will take the stage in the Brubeck Room at the Wilton Library on Tuesday, July 9. The band, temporarily named Grey Rocks after the address of their studio, is an acoustic ensemble comprised of Forrest Rappaport on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Ryan Amodei on lead guitar and backup vocals, Cole Smith on violin, and Wes Wallace on percussion. Aside from basic amplification for vocals and acoustic guitars, Grey Rocks uses only acoustic equipment.
Rather than a conventional drum set, Wes uses a Djembe drum, a type of bongo drum, so as not to overpower the rest of the band. Grey Rocks has used the violin to compensate for the absence of an electric guitarist, and in Forrest’s opinion, improves the experience.
“Cole sort of takes the place of an electric guitarist... it’s a way for it to be really energetic and powerful without it being super loud and distorted.”
Each member of the band came from a different musical background, and it was only until a performance by Acoustic Wilton — a group of Wilton students and adult singer/songwriters that raises money for various causes — the idea for Grey Rocks was born.
Cole told how the band met through the event: “Acoustic Wilton sort of brought us all together, and we got to know each other musically through that. And that’s sort of what gave birth to this whole idea of doing the band...” While their musical experience may be different, their tastes and skills allow for an important variation in their music.
Wilton Library contacted Ryan Amodei in hopes that his other band, Downstairs Mixup, could play the show. Ryan believed, however, the distortion-oriented nature of his band would be too powerful for the acoustics of the Brubeck Room.
“I just knew right off the bat my band would be too loud for it ... so I asked these guys because I really enjoy playing with them and they were interested...” Now, Grey Rocks has a full, hour-long set planned for Tuesday night, complete with nine songs ranging from Jack Johnson to Sublime to Dave Matthews Band. The setlist also includes The Devil Went Down to Georgia by The Charlie Daniels Band, which is sure to show off some of Cole’s violin skills.
Information: wiltonlibrary.com or 203-762-3950.