Tuned In to Freer

April 6, 2008 12:29:26 PM PDT
Our Tuned In artist this week is Freer. They are a talented rock quartet from the Detroit area. We caught up with them during a show at Grape Street Pub. Here is their biography.

FREER is a Detroit-based rock quartet who have left the garage to craft their sound in the dark shadows of Motown. Existing somewhere in between The MC5 and Smokey Robinson, all filtered through a classical background, this talented foursome is creating music that is as soulful as it is punk, and as original as it is addictive.

FREER was formed by brothers Jeremy and Jeffery Freer in Fall of 2005. Having spent nearly a decade in other bands, and working on various solo projects, Jeremy felt that it was time to put together the most innovative group of musicians he could find, who had no limits when it came to genre.

During the summer of 2006, the band wrote and recorded their debut album, entitled SECRET CHORUS. Jeremy recalls, "2006 was a very strange year not only in my personal life but in the world in general. Around the globe there was a lot going on and much of it wasn't very encouraging; the war, natural disasters?In the middle of all of that I was feeling very insignificant in the whole scheme of things, but also very consumed with my everyday struggles. To me the record is very much about those two forces competing with each other."

Such opposition seems to be the theme of SECRET CHORUS: "During the time that I was working on the album, I felt an extreme extension of every emotion. My goal for this record was to be as self - absorbed as possible and as socially aware as possible all at the same time. When people hear the songs, I want them to be able hear my journey as well as be able to identify with it in a very visceral way."

Two influences which have had an overwhelming impact on Jeremy are his family, and the city that he has spent the majority of his life in. The Freer family has a long history in Detroit - dating back to the turn of the 20th century, when Jeremy and Jeffrey's great-great grandmother Phoebe settled in the city, becoming a well-known local character who put on minstrel shows with her son Charles Freer (a self taught pianist, guitar player and singer) at local theatres, and read fortunes for the mob (and cops) in tea leaves. Jeremy feels a strong tie to family's roots in his hometown. One family member in particular was especially close to him: "In the summer of 2004 my Grandpa Freer died. He was a brilliant man who never finished school but worked as a carpenter, read theology and taught himself to paint. When he died I begin thinking of naming my next project FREER not so much because it was my last name but in honor of him. The picture on the cover of our record is him as a little boy."

The family influence runs deep into Jeremy's musical tastes as well. "In his late teens and early twenties my dad played blues guitar in the Sam Lay Blues Band. Sam Lay also played drums on records by Muddy Waters, Paul Butterfield and Bob Dylan. As a matter of fact Sam played with Dylan when he went electric at the infamous Newport Folk Festival show. As a member of the Sam Lay Blues Band he opened for Muddy Waters, James Brown, Little Lucky Peterson and other R&B/Blues legends. So I was lucky growing up with all this amazing music to draw from."

Only months after forming, FREER played to a sold out crowd at the Lager House, one of Detroit 's most coveted venues. Since then, they've consistently played to packed crowds at the Magic Stick, Bohemian National Home, The Belmont and Shubas in Chicago as well as drawing impressive crowds to Detroit 's annual Comerica Tastefest in 2006, sharing the stage with established Detroit rock veterans.

Currently unsigned, FREER just released their debut, SECRET CHORUS (available on iTunes and at select indie retailers) this Summer, and looks forward to touring the country in 2007.

Please enjoy their performance video from their show at The Grape Street Pub

You are now Tuned In to Freer

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