Family affair

The Whitney Myer Band

Scott, Whitney and Fred Myer of The Whitney Myer Band. Despite appearances, they don’t play a lick of country music.

Scott, Whitney and Fred Myer of The Whitney Myer Band. Despite appearances, they don’t play a lick of country music.

Photo By brad bynum

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The Whitney Myer Band might practice on a ranch, but the band members will assure you, it doesn’t affect their music.

“We still don’t like country,” says guitarist and backup vocalist Scott Myer.

“Nor do we like horses,” drummer Fred Myer adds, jokingly.

Though the band members find it easy to say what they’re not—country—they find it hard to say what they are. After spending an hour and a half at one of their band practices, I couldn’t pin it down either.

Take the song “You” for example. It’s upbeat, funky and damn, does 23-year-old vocalist Whitney Myer sing it with soul. But if you compare it to their song “Raindrop,” you’ll find yourself confused, since the song is soft, undistorted and folksy.

My question regarding their genre led the band to reflect on it more later. In doing so, they came up with “popsoulfunk.”

The band has diverse influences. They all mention James Brown. Whitney lists Amy Winehouse and Gladys Knight. She even brings up Bjork. But again, they reiterate, anything but country.

Whitney’s lyrics mostly deal with love. In the song “You,” she writes, “You don’t know me so don’t be messing with my heart and soul.” In a new song, titled “Waiting for a Savior,” she writes that she’s tired of waiting for a savior so she’s going to save herself.

During the practice I attended, I noticed a chemistry among the members of the band. Not only in their songs, which they play with energy and passion even during practice, but with the way they communicate.

“We speak our own music language,” says Whitney, who also plays guitar and keyboards. She thinks this could be explained by the fact that apart from new bassist Gia Torcaso— who joined the band in March, they’re all related. Scott is Whitney’s dad and Fred is Scott’s twin brother. Being in a band together is something they all cherish.

“It’s kept us close,” Scott says. “We have a close relationship I think lots of parents would envy.”

“Yeah, it’s true,” Whitney agrees.

Whitney grew up around music, with her dad and uncle playing in many bands, such as The Mudsharks and The Commander Cody Band, and her mom singing in church. This helped push Whitney in that same direction.

When she was 13, Whitney wrote her first song. Scott recognized the talent, and the two began playing coffee shops. Fred soon joined them.

The trio put out their first CD in 2003, titled Last Days. However, when Whitney entered college in 2005, school became the main focus. The band, for the most part, went on hiatus. Scott didn’t want her playing music full-time right out of high school. He wanted her to have that degree, at least for backup.

“[I told Whitney] if you finish school, I’ll go 100 percent with you here,” says Scott. “And that’s what we’re doing now. This is that 100 percent.”

Since Whitney graduated in May 2009, the band has been very committed, practicing two to four days a week and playing shows regularly.

In May or June, The Whitney Myer Band plans to release their second CD. They hope to begin touring in the summer or fall, while keeping Reno their home base.

“We want to take it as far as we can and be successful musicians that can make a living,” Whitney says.

“That might be pushing it,” Scott says, causing everyone to laugh.

“We have a plan of attack,” Whitney continues. “We’re very strategic.”