Honeywagen has been a little surprised recently as people have started getting up and dancing at their live shows; but this prodigious group of guys and their neo-60's rock sound have been starting to build a buzz in the KC area scene since they revamped their set and lineup a couple months ago.
The band started way back in 2000 when singer/songwriter Mike Penner met lead guitarist Scott Christensen of the Rewind Band via a mutual friend from Vail, CO. Fueled by a mutual interest in 60’s rock, the two began recording original material in Mike's home studio. "It became clear right away that we had something worthwhile after the first few demos" says Mike, "Scott and me just clicked, and we knew we wanted to keep playing in the ways of this classic sound."
Now in 2019, the band has recently been joined by drummer/Charlie Pautler, who spiced up the mix with his powerful Ringo-style playing. In addition Charlie introduced Stefan Ruprecht/bass who adds awesome Paul-like harmonies and bass lines. "At first we just had this sort of 60’s Beatles revival thing in mind," recalls Mike, "But when Charlie came along he started breaking out all these Ringo beats and Stefan started adding these Beatles harmonies we were like, cool! - these guys really kick it up a whole bunch of notches"! The combination of these four guys really worked, and it gave Honeywagen the unique edge that defines the band’s new sound.
Excited as they were with the new sounds they were laying down, the band never anticipated the enthusiasm people at the shows found with their music. "I can’t get over this band", comments Barry Lee, station manager of KKFI 90.1 FM, "The songs in their sets are fresh and familiar at the same time, with absolutely addictive melodies." Local club owner Frank Dorsey agrees, "Honeywagen's stage show should be registered with the FDA as a stimulant, and probably only available by prescription."
Although they couldn’t be happier than they are with the way things are going around the KC area, Mike and the guys have set their sites on the Midwestern region. Following the planned 2019 release of their fifth album, with a working title of "Honeywagen V" right now, the band is planning several short 2019 Summer/Fall tours that will stretch from Southern Wisconsin to the east coast of Florida. "We just want to get out there and play at this point," Scott says, "With four albums and two promotional 'give away' records of Big Star and Beatles distributed by Kool Kat Musik in NJ under our belt, we’re ready to get back to what it’s all about: rockin’ the house!"
"What it comes down to for us," remarks Charlie, "Is that we really dig what we’re doing, and we’re bringing a lot of people something they really dig too." "Exactly," agrees Stefan, "Even without the recent success, we’ve met people who say 'this is the kind of music I love, why is nobody else playing it?' that we wouldn’t want to do anything else."