Beggars' Caravan
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Beggars' Caravan

Cary, North Carolina, United States | Established. Jan 01, 1999 | INDIE

Cary, North Carolina, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 1999
Band Rock Jam


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Beggars' Caravan - Aiming To Please"

by Paul Roberts
The Durham, NC based jam band has been gaining quite a following with their serious grooves, tight chops and creative sound. Featuring members Chris Barkley - lead vocals, guitar, and sax, KT - lead guitar, vocals, and harmonica, Brandon Allen – drums and Paul Benner - bass, the band is poised to increase their following within the coming months. KT dished out the grub on all things BC….

VI: Where did your band name originate?

As the legend is told, one of the founders of the band, while in college, knew the music had the potential for a large following and would be played by less than wealthy music lovers . . . but we don’t dare speak his name.

VI: A lot of bands claim originality, how do you guys keep it fresh?

Every now and then, one of us threatens to move to another country (Scotland, Mexico, South Carolina, etc.) and blend in, disappear, never to be seen (or heard) again. Then we travel there, write a few songs, and come back to our sweet complacency. We like to think of ourselves as romantic masochists. Seriously though, we try and make honest music and don’t worry about what anyone else is doing.

VI: Who are you three biggest musical influences?

The Beatles
The Grateful Dead
The Traveling Wilburys

VI: How would you describe your sound?

Balanced, erring on the side of loud. Maybe mellow rock with some funky acoustic charm.

VI: What gives you goosebumps?

The goosebump fairy. We leave our broken guitar strings under our beds in exchange. That, and being in the middle of live music energy. It’s a still-unexplained ‘whole is greater than the sum of its parts’ phenomenon. There’s nothing like it. We will die poor because of it.

VI: How do you come up with the songs?

One of two ways, usually . . . either Chris or I (KT) will crawl inside our shell and scrape out a sometimes random blend of our past ventures and emotive wranglings, or the whole band will get in a room, a combustion chamber, or on stage during sound check and just let it all out to see what sifts through. Many of our favorite songs came out of a great creative jam. The jams help us loosen up and often give us a great residue of new material.

VI: What are your thoughts on downloading music?

Who doesn’t like free stuff? We’ve all downloaded music for the thrill and ease of it, but if we really like what an artist has going on, either philosophically or musically and sometimes based on a downloaded preview, we’ll buy the album. Nothing will ever replace the feeling of cracking open a new set of tunes and checking out the artwork, the credits, lyrics, etc. to see where the artist’s head and soul are. As long as there are reasonably priced albums out there, we’ll keep buying.

VI: Tell me a funny story from the road.

After a great night of playing, we were packing up our gear. One of the patrons, who had been dancing and drunkenly attempting to lead the band, got a little out of hand when the music stopped and had to be forcibly removed from the establishment, which involved his neck, belt buckle, face, and other parts that don’t have good chemistry with concrete. He agreed to leave, but didn’t say anything about not returning, so he showed up a little while later with his son, his son’s friend, and a can of gasoline. After threatening to burn down the building and scaring the local women, children, and musicians, he agreed to go home after the police asked nicely. Somehow, the gas can disappeared and no one was arrested. Just another happy Caravan fan who didn’t want the night to end . . . or something like that.

VI: What is your favorite/least favorite thing about playing shows?

They are one and the same. We love to see our friends and fans having a great time. The bittersweet part is that we have to share that emotion from the stage. We love to be the driving force of the party, but sometimes we’d like to share it beside them instead of in front of them. It’s hard to get everyone together for a dinner or some social event, but gigs seem to create a family experience, which keeps us alive and creative. Despite that few feet that separates us at shows, we wouldn’t trade it for anything.

VI: What was the last album you bought on the day it was released?

We live in caves and have no idea when albums are released. We’re not even sure when ours came out. Probably a Dylan, Widespread Panic, Beck, or Big Head Todd album.

VI: What do you think about the state of rock music?

Rock is alive and well. The outlets are what’s changing all the time. There are different ways of accessing music, different types of recording facilities and techniques, new distribution tools, etc. It’s easier to find new music these days, but sometimes harder to see it in person. It takes money to tour, and many bands don’t want hands in their pockets. Everyone has seen the self-destructive market that some record companies have created, but the bands who truly want to get the music out there are finding ways to do it. The internet, satellite radio, and scene mags (like this one) have been huge in that regard. They give independent artists every chance to get a musical foothold without jumping into a bad contract. People still love to discover new music and follow that artist’s progress. That won’t change.

VI: Who is the coolest band you’ve toured with thus far?

I (KT) played a fair amount with Nathan Davis before he passed away in 2005. That was always a rollercoaster of an experience. His passion for music was only outshined by his Spartan fight to live every moment as hard as humanly possible, to an obvious and often-admitted fault. I learned an enormous amount from that time.

VI: Where is your favorite place to eat while on the road?

Oh, man. Waffle House is always a good option, especially at 3 in the morning. . Of course most any roadside diner, one of the last great pieces of Americana, will do just fine. We’re thinking of starting a petition to make them historical landmarks.

- The Village Idiot

"Take Me With You"

An outstanding album filled with various layers, each song contributing its own personality and style to produce this truly creative success. The strong vocal harmonies and flawless musicianship exemplify what a band can do with such talent and creativity. Beggarsʼ Caravan has a bright future, with a gift that rivals that of Dave Matthews and Sting.

Tr.1 Breathe- A great track to match an amazing album. This song pulls the listener right into the album with the rich vocals and impressive background instrumentals.

Tr.3 It Is What It Is- An awesome introduction to a multi-layered track. This song combines a notable blend of horns and other unique instrumentals to create a truly original sound. Sound as fresh and green as the grass on the cover with the rich soul of a new EricClapton echoing in the vocals.

Tr.9 More Like Ewe- An excellent track with a terrific hook that keeps the listenerʼs foot tapping from beginning to end.
- Reviewed by Erin Bukofsky of Bryan Farrish Radio Promotion


Take Me With You -Tire Swing Records

If the Sky is Falling - Tire Swing Records



Singer/songwriter Chris Barkley and guitarist/songwriter Kevin Thornton began their sorted collaborations during their college years at Appalachian State in Boone, NC, both already drawing on professional training on various instruments as well as performing both nationally and internationally. The pair soon rounded up seasoned local talent and well-respected session keyboardist Jay Shirley along with the accomplished duo of Brandon Allen on drums/percussion and Paul Benner on bass guitar. Brandons extensive experience and unique rhythmic playing style naturally intertwines with Pauls keen sense of grove establishing a mighty foundation to the smooth vocals and bright, complex leads and riffs that define the Caravan sound. In 2007, together with Grammy-nominated producer Ian Schreier, the band recorded and released their first studio album Take Me With You. Several tracks, including the single It Is What It Is, were featured on both terrestrial and Sirius XM Radio. The years to follow would bring an extensive tour schedule and the extraordinary honor to feature as the house band for a 2010 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame event where they performed alongside band members of Traffic, Yes, Queen, and The Revolution. Continuing to introspectively dig in their own dirt, the band entirely self-produced their newest record not only in an effort to create a more rootsy sophomore release, but to challenge themselves to move the wheels forward while accommodating respective jobs and growing families. Amid the chaos, If the Sky is Falling finds the band performing at a creative peak- with truly unforgettable melodies and inspired lyrics that brings the musical prowess of its members to the forefront. The album instantly captures the listener and carries you along lifes familiar roads. Enjoy the ride, and these tracks might just get you right with yourself.