"No glitz, no glamor, no pyro. Just let the music do the talking."
Such is the mantra of Brazin Bull, a Tiffin-based band playing Texas-style blues, classic and Southern rock. Formed about four years ago, the foursome has performed locally at Loud Fest, the Heritage Festival, Tiffin Eagles, the Viaduct, Saucy Squeaks, Bear's Den and private parties. Other venues have included Third Saturday in August (a bike rally), Fremont, Port Clinton, Lima, White's Landing, Cridersville, the Village Cafe and Jimmy Bucket's.
Guitarist Bud Mowery and drummer Gary Burns founded the group to break away from "the standard bar band songs." Their common goal was to play good popular music "not already being played to death by other bands."
The blues being the basis of their musical style, they chose a playlist to reflect that preference. Tom Courtney recently was added on bass and Chip Rowland contributes vocals.
Burns said he came up with the band's name.
"I was watching the History Channel one time about the inventor of torture equipment. The guy made a bull out of brass, and they'd cook people in it. They said it was called a brazen bull. I thought that would be a really neat name for a band. ... It didn't have nothing to do with torture, even though sometimes when I'm with these guys, it is almost torture," Burns said.
The musicians can take the ribbing in stride and have fun together. Music is a change of pace from their regular jobs. Mowery sells concrete block for Cantelli Block in Huron; Burns is a machinist for Sarka Sheet Metal; Courtney works for Seneca Medical; and Rowland is a tool salesman.
They all took up music at young ages.
Rowland said he played saxophone in his middle school band and sang in school choirs.
"I broke my hand and took up guitar for therapy," he said.
"I started playing musical instruments in fourth grade. I played violin for awhile, then switched to cello. I played saxophone, played guitar, and finally ended up playing bass, which I like the best," Courtney said.
Burns learned partly by imitation. He was about 15 and needed something to do.
"My dad had a drum set upstairs and I just decided to start playing one day. I put on some headphones and taught myself," he said.
"I started playing when I was 14," Mowery said. "I took organ lessons for about a year and a half. Then I started watching bands on TV, and I got rid of that organ and got a guitar."
Brazin Bull performs covers of music by Stevie Ray Vaughn, ZZ Top, Eric Clapton, Johnny Winter, Robin Trower, Robert Cray, Jimi Hendrix, The Allman Brothers Band, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Frank Marino and Mahogany Rush, Stevie Wonder, Robben Ford, Dire Straits, Lynyrd Skynyrd and a few others.
The band is to be in action at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Bear's Den in Tiffin. At 10 p.m. Feb. 11, they are to play at Meadowbrook in Bascom. They will return to Meadowbrook March 24 to open for McGuffey Lane.
To book the band, call Mowery at (419) 618-1035.