Brian Odell first picked up a guitar in the fall of 1995 during his sophomore year of High School. He had been actively participating in school choirs since grade school but this was his first experience with an instrument. With no previous experience and only minimal instruction from friends, Odell has become a self-taught guitar wonder boy. He does not read nor write music in the traditional sense, instead uses tablature, a graphical representation of the guitar strings and frets. The music comes from his soul, with honest lyrics that strike deep. “Whatever song I’m singing . . . I try to remember the feelings I had when I was writing it . . . I try to bring those emotions out in my performance”. With influences ranging from Dave Matthews Band to Green Day and James Taylor to Jack Johnson, Odell has created a musical lifestyle and future for himself. Brian has recorded two independent CDs and has sold a little over 2000 to date. His song topics include love, heartbreak, internal struggle and good times with friends. With his laid-back, trusting and sensitive manner he presents a serious and engaging stage presence that continues to capture each audience he finds himself performing for.
Mike Yesenofski is a dentist by day, and musician by night. He has been playing and writing music ever since he first picked up his big brothers electric guitar in grade school. Inspired by the guitar virtuosos of the 1980's and the big hair bands of the day, Mike spent countless hours blasting the stereo in his bedroom and playing along to the music. In High School he took classical guitar lessons and also began recording music with his friends. In College Mike continued to play music with bands in Portland and also recorded, engineered, and produced multiple albums out of his home studio.
In 2005 Mike picked up the bass guitar to join the local band Runaway Norm, and released the album "Undercover From Daylight" with the band. Mike has been playing with the Brian Odell band since 2010 and contiunes to enjoy playing live shows and writing music.
Brandon Ficquette has been playing music since he was young. He seemed to always have an amazing musician around to learn from or be inspired by. All of those inspirations helped form him into the musician he is today. Brandon loves all the music and sounds of the world. Whether he's playing in a band, behind a singer song writer, composing, creating, improving or becoming he tries to add to the music and feel the emotion that is being created.
Marcus “Big Daddy” McQuade started playing the drums at an early age just wanting to copy whatever his big sister, Lynda, was doing. Playing the drums just happened to stick! Big Daddy has got a fun, powerful style reminiscent of his influences Stewart Copeland, Dennis Chambers, and Carter Beauford. Because of his desire and drive to be the most “in the pocket” drummer on the planet, his desire to “serve the song” and his laid back attitude, Marcus has had great musical opportunities. He has recorded for many local artists as well. Big Daddy was the drummer for a Portland mainstay, The Bryan Flannery Band, for 6 years and has shared the stage with many other great bands and artists including David Klinkenberg, Darrell Mansfield, Hank Shreeve, Concrete Cowboys, Kurt Van Meter, Flexor T, Montgomery Gentry and Mark Wills to name a few.
Nick Clearwater, a.k.a. The Soulshaker, grew up with music as a keystone to his childhood. He could often be found banging out the rythyms on the nearest pot, pan, and table top. Around the time of his sixteenth birthday his parents finally decided to give him a more traditional forum. With his first full drum kit in his possession, Nick’s interest in music reached new heights. He started listening to more electronic music from artists like: Chemical Brothers, Fatboy Slim and Prodigy. Shortly thereafter, he found himself enjoying the offerings of the house music scene and DJ mixing. Nick finally acquired a pair of turntables during his junior year at Linfield College in McMinnville, OR. Initially, he focused only on mixing house music. When he began offering his services as a DJ to the numerous house and frat parties he became more exposed to hip hop and Top 40. Nick found himself adapting his stylings on the turntables once again after graduating from Linfield and being introduced to Portland, Oregon singer-songwriter, Brian Odell. The two started experimenting with mixing two musical styles normally not combined. As the two polished their sound, The Soulshaker began performing shows with Odell at various Portland venues.
The Brian Odell Band was born from numerous informal jam sessions between mutual friends. Odell and Ritchie had performed together on numerous occasions between 2001 – 2003 which helped form the foundation of the new band. When The Soulshaker and Odell started collaborating, there was now more of a sense of urgency to finally put together a new, unique band. After a few discussions on who to enlist as the drummer, Nick Clearwater helped recruit Josh Hackett. After a couple of admittedly questionable jam sessions, the sound of The Brian Odell Band came together. Mixing the tried and true formula of the singer/songwriter with infectious drum rhythms, funky yet melodic bass lines and fresh flavor of turntables, steel drum and percussion puts The Brian Odell Band in a genre all it’s own. You’re sure to find something you love about the sound and style of a band that is a welcome breath of fresh air to the Portland music scene.