Dirty Revival shakes up The Shakedown

Dirty Revival rocks the stage on Friday, April 5th, 2019 at The Shakedown in downtown Bellingham, Wash. // Photo by Jordan Shepherd

By Jordan Shepherd

The Western Front

Dirty Revival, a seven-piece Portland, Oregon band featuring rock and soul sounds, shook up The Shakedown on Friday, April 5.

Hitting the stage at around 9 p.m. and playing until 11:30 p.m., Dirty Revival showcased the talents of the seven musicians playing  the saxophone, keyboard, trumpet, guitar, bass and drums, tied together by lead singer Sarah Clarke.

This marked the first time Dirty Revival played The Shakedown, but it was not their first show in the area, Clarke said. The band has played several shows at Wild Buffalo alongside Bellingham bands: Snug Harbor and Baby Cakes.

“I don’t think we have ever had a bad show in Bellingham, and I’m hoping that this one will be equally as good as all the rest,” Clarke said before the show.

The band played a variety of original songs, such as “Dirty Love,” as well as covers from some of their favorite artists including “War Pigs” by Black Sabbath.

“I have seen them a couple of times now, and one thing I always love is the amount of energy they have, and the variety of styles they can play, and how they can take covers of already famous songs and make them their own,” Bellingham resident and concert attendee Kimberly Anderson said.

Event attendee Ciana Deberry said one of the most impressive features of the band was Clarke’s vocals and her ability to cover a wide variety of tones and pitches.

“The lead singer’s vocals are amazing, the notes she can hit and the way she can use her tone is just beautiful.” Deberry said. 

The band consists of lead singer Clarke, guitarist and emcee Evan “Evvnflo” Simko, drummer Terry Drysdale, bassist Jon Shaw, keyboardist Ben Turner, tenor saxophonist Chris Hardin and trumpeter Thomas Barber.

Dirty Revival, which formed in 2013, will be turning 6 years old in May, 2019. The band came together slowly but surely, Clarke said.

Clarke went to high school with Drysdale and Hardin and knew the two had been playing music together for fun, she said. Eventually a simple invitation for Clarke to come jam in the basement with the group led to the start of Dirty Revival, she said.

“From there on we just kept going, eventually I think we had 11 people involved,” Clarke said. “We started with a house show which was really fun and led to our first real show and second show, and it kept going from there. As we kept going it was really obvious that our 11-piece band wasn’t going to cut it on the road, so we cut it down to what we thought were the key essentials.”

Ultimately the band settled on its seven members and was discovered by the owner of Dutch Records, Scott Lublink, Clarke said.

“I started working with Dirty Revival about a year ago,” Lublink said. “I had been a big fan of them for some time, and I was a buyer for a whiskey festival in town. One of the years I booked them and since then we have been friends.” 

With his knowledge and the connections Lublink had made over the years, he decided to start his own record label, he said.

“[Dirty Revival] was the first band I approached when I started reaching out because I knew how great they were and how much potential they have to be something big,” Lublink said.

Dirty Revival released their self-titled debut album in 2015 and has since released singles throughout the last couple of years.

Dirty Revival is currently on tour until the end of August and will be traveling to Oregon, Washington, California, Idaho, Iowa and Minnesota.

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