The Common 'Taters & the Turn-Ups
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The Common 'Taters & the Turn-Ups

Tallahassee, Florida, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013

Tallahassee, Florida, United States
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Americana Pop




This band has no press


Still working on that hot first release.



The Common ‘Taters & the Turn-Ups’ style of playing draws from a variety of diverse sounds, but features an acoustic presentation of American roots music – just call it “Americana”.

The ‘Taters play folk, swamp pop, Cajun, rock, dance, funk, reggae, country, blues, newgrass and gospel, but it comes out of “simple acoustic sittin’-on-the-porch kinda music.” It is rootsy, and features two, three, and four-part harmonic vocals. If the power were to go out somewhere where the band was playing, they would sound exactly the same, only softer.

The idea for the ‘Taters unique acoustic-but-modern sound came from a song written by Mike Lewis entitled “Western Dance.” The song inspired Mike’s vision of the band’s percussion sounding like a mini-marching band--a drum line. the ‘Taters use a non-traditional drum set (not the standard trap drum set) that includes hand-played percussion instruments such as the djembe, the cajon, bongos, etc. The snare drum is left out entirely, or used only sparingly.

“If the ‘Taters’ drummer could hook all his instruments to his shoulders and body,” Mike said, “and stand around by the lake in the park playing, that would be the sound the band is going for.” When the band is hooked into a P.A., the heavy drums can be balanced out for a more acoustic sound, he said.

The band is currently working on Western Dance, a CD of 15 originals written by Mike Lewis, Ben Banks, John Gunter, and Jim Crozier. The ‘Taters perform covers as well as originals. While less well known, it is important that the covers chosen by the band are still danceable and sound familiar to those listening. Covers include songs by Cake, Anders Osborne, Papa Mali, Robert Earl Keen, J.J. Cale, John Prine, Shawn Mullins/Chuck Cannon, the Gourds, the Subdudes, Amos Lee, Taj Mahal, and John Mooney, whose unique style is based on Delta blues combined with the funky second line beat of New Orleans.

The Common ‘Taters and the Turn-Ups are comprised of “core” common ‘taters (Mike Lewis, Jim Crozier, Brett Gardner, Mike Stone, Jan DeCosmo, and Pat Stafford), along with those who might be invited to play with them. Thus, the band’s name reflects the fact that guest artists often “turn up” to play with the ‘Taters.

Band Members