Meet the Josh and Pete Band
The early years
The Josh and Pete band was the longest creative project of my life. It spanned from 2001-2011 until we changed our name to “The Really Cooks“.
The band started in my best friend Pete’s basement as a quasi-joke but grew more sophisticated throughout college and beyond.
The first iteration of the band was recorded on a cassette tape deck. We ad-libbed in between songs and created a full-length album mixed with covers, originals and skits about alter-ego kinda british-canadian sounding rock & rollers who locked their audience in a concert-hall and forced them to listen to 1 song and 10 encores. The sound quality was awful but the content was magical.
We wanted to sell a physical CD in school, so we bought a crappy multi-track off of ebay (I think ebay existed at that time) from a guy named Burt. We re-recorded the entire set and skits on the multi-track. The sound quality was marginally better but enough to determine that this would be the first CD. The only problem is we had no idea how to make it a physical CD at that point. We took it to an actual studio and had them “live-listen” and record our dumb songs from the multitrack onto a cd. That must have been one of the weirdest points in that studio engineer’s career.
We got the result we wanted and branded the album as “Meet the Josh and Pete Band.” and took it to school to sell. We sold them for $5 bucks and made about $250. Here is the poster we used.
Johnny “The Heat” is a character who despised The Josh and Pete Band but went to all of their shows anyway
The album was a major success. Our “single” called “Shut Up” became very popular in high-school and we were encouraged to make another album.
This was the start of the very long and musical journey of “The Josh and Pete Band!”
Check out the single from our first album below (and a bonus “talking track”)
Touring with Josh and Pete
We got better.
After finding success with Meet the Josh and Pete Band, we decided to work on album #2. As you could probably tell if you listened to album #1, we really didn’t have any sense of rhythm or how to play our instruments yet. But between albums one and two, we started listening to some really influential artists and mimicking their sound. Album 2 is where we started to explore our own “sound” and where we first wrote The Island Song, a song that would show up ten years later on O’Captain. We still didn’t have much rhythm but we were able to create layers, instrument and a cohesive sound.
This album was miles ahead of the first. To record it, we ended up trashing Burt’s old multitrack and “upgraded” to Steve Wineburg’s. Steve was a high school frienemy who lent us the multitrack in exchange for three homework assignments. I don’t think we ever gave it back. The album concept was similar to the first (everyone hates The Josh and Pete Band, and Josh and Pete are oblivious), except this time, they tour all over the world and meet all types of random characters. This album had very weird talking tracks, including an Ostrich who was very upset at his life, and the German version of The Josh and Pete Band, The Jim and Keith Band.
We printed the album, created a custom booklet, and sold it in school again.
The album was just as successful as the first, with even a little more profit. We even got a write-up in the school newspaper.
Check out an example of our 1-year later style below
The Gap Years
Learning on our own
The Four Cute Guys (From Left to Right: Pete DiLorenzo, Brian Marsden, Ben Appel, Josh Silverbauer)
After the 2nd album, the Josh and Pete Band took a long break (almost 5 years!). We started other projects such as “The Four Cute Guys” and “BYOB (Bring Your Own Blues)”
The Only Josh and Pete Band project we did between the second album and starting O’Captain was a comic book that we made to keep us entertained during Applied Economics class. These characters ended up being the staple of The Josh and Pete Band characters for years to come.
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The Greatest Rock Opera that Never Happened
The O’Captain Album
After High School ended, Pete and I went to different Universities. He went to Penn State, and I went to Emerson College.
Pete didn’t vibe with Penn State much, so I told him to come over to Emerson. He got in, and we immediately started working on projects again. Creativity was at an all-time high, and we started taking a bunch of mini-songs that we were working on and compiling them together into a master suite of songs, centering around “The Island Song” from Touring with Josh and Pete Band.
I won’t go into the album too much since I have an entire page dedicated to O’Captain, but this was my favorite project ever. A massive opus about a Captain who finds himself stranded on a desert island where weird characters teach him all about what it means to be alive. Check it out and listen for yourself or learn more about the full album!