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Band Profile: Soul Store

Date Posted: 2001-08-22

If folk-based acoustic rock is more fitting to your taste than many of the other music styles present on Okinawa, Soul Store has what you're looking for. "Alternative Cow Punk" is the name the band has given to their style.

While watching Soul Store perform at 7th Heaven Koza on highway 330, I saw the band jump from genre to genre, mixing the acoustic "Drop D" sounds of Soundgarden and Nirvana with the more lightweight styles of Simon and Garfunkel and Bob Dylan. However, the band claims that the styles and music of Bob Marley have been their primary influence.

Dave Reynolds and Joel Byrum, the two members of Soul Store, have played together for three months, but they have been hard at work writing songs as a band for only the past two months. Both members of the band play acoustic guitar, sharing the duties of the lead and rhythm guitar. According to Joel, "We met through a mutual friend, but it was destiny. It was meant to happen. We clicked in a lot of ways." The band's name is from a song Dave wrote with an old garage band he used to play with in the States. "It was my favorite song I wrote for the band," says Joel. "We both just connected on that one. It's a bluesy kind of thing. Most of our songs come straight from our heart, but most of them are also tongue in cheek like we're laughing at some of the past serious issues we've dealt with."

The two band members are very humorous individuals, both on and off stage. Be sure to ask Dave to play the notorious "Mullet Song," a song about a hairstyle many of us have become familiar with while living in America. I really enjoyed this song. It's a real ice breaker. The band jumped back and forth between comedy and serious throughout their set. "Hardware Girl" had a darker feel with twisted background needling by Dave and Soundgardenish chord progressions strummed by Joel. The duo also played their own rendition of "Every Rose Has It's Thorn," which was surprisingly good.

Soul Store is a very original folk-based acoustic duo, something you rarely see out here on Okinawa. They're also two very humble, friendly guys. After the show we talked a little bit about the military, Okinawa, music, and life in general. They love Okinawa and admitted, "Sometimes we forget we're in the military out here." Watching the band was very nostalgic for me, as they had the feel of a humble college band. They are a very original band, and even while covering songs such as Sublime's "What I Got" and Bob Marley's "Redemption Song" the band did an excellent job of playing the songs their way, adding their own personalities into the mix. Soul Store is one of Okinawa's newer bands with a lot of potential. While playing their set, they bring an intimate coffee shop feel with them.

If you'd like your chance to watch the duo perform, they will be playing at 7th Heaven on Wednesday, August 29 with The Cylindars and are hoping to pick up a regular gig playing at 7th Heaven every Wednesday. If you're into folk-based acoustic rock, you just might like them.

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