MilkDrive’s Jazz Gypsy Bluegrass Sound

The Indy Bluegrass Sounds of Milkdrive Make New Genre Ground

MilkDrive Album Cover - WavesAustin Texas Band MilkDrive’s Jazz Gypsy Bluegrass Sound

During a long drive home one fall evening in 2012 a College radio station was my time sink. As I left the city heading to the urban countryside a jazz grass band began to play. Maybe they didn’t exactly fit the mood in driving down a darkened interstate but they caught my ear. The sound stood out amid indy rock bands.

That is how I learned of MilkDrive. They are a four member band out of Austin Texas. The mighty little band enjoys numerous descriptive labels which all fit them. Call them jazz, gypsy jazz, jazz pickers to many more, they are most comfortable with jazz-grass.

MilkDrive are a four member jazz grass band from Austin Texas

  • Noah Jeffries – Guitar, harmony vocals
  • Dennis Ludiker – Mandolin, harmony vocals
  • Brian Beken – Fiddle, lead vocals
  • Matt Mefford – Double bass

My first exposure was MilkDrive’s cover song Dear Prudence by the Beatles. With respect for the Beatles, I’ve not been an enthusiast. Milkdrive made Dear Prudence new to me. If you are mildly curious, perhaps this should be your first exposure.

You can’t go wrong with the delicate tribute to the city and a girl, SoHo from their 2011 album Road From Home.

Their unique sound of mandolin, violin and country plucking banjo is honestly captivating.

The band soon sent me their CD Waves for review. In just a few listens, I had questions. How did they get the name MilkDrive? Do they harmoniously compete instrumentally? What was with those possessive song titles for their instrumentals, Tom’s Ranch, Benny’s Bus, Gargamel’s Cat?
The band MilkDrive
In February of 2013 I interviewed two of the band members on Skype. That interview is available on YouTube under my channel: DangerManXX. Originally the interview was planned for three members, Front man Brian Beken, Mandolinist Dennis Ludiker and Guitarist Noah Jeffries.
If the interest is there, look forward to a follow-up interview to include Brian.
MilkDrive tours all over the U.S. hitting the big cities too. Don’t miss them live. Seeing a band with this much heart up close isn’t always possible. Don’t miss your chance. Check out their website for tour dates.

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