Longtime Quincy musicians - La Cosa Nostra - to perform at State Room

Local Q Writer
Posted: Mar. 8, 2018 9:50 am

QUINCY - As high schoolers in the mid 1980s, Brett Myers, Alan Lawless, Steve Brueggeman and Dennis Hibbard formed Paris and soon became a popular area rock band.

By 1987, the friends decided it was time to go their separate ways professionally. Then, 27 years later, the group got back together under a new name: La Cosa Nostra.

La Cosa Nostra, known for covering everyone from the Beatles to Van Halen to Rush, is slated to perform an all-ages show at 7 p.m. Saturday at the State Room, 434 S. Eighth in Quincy. There is a $5 cover charge.

Myers, the drummer in both Paris and La Cosa Nostra, took off for Los Angeles when the high school band split up. There, he had a professional career where he toured and put out a couple of albums. Lawless also moved out to L.A. shortly after Myers, although the two had their own projects. Brueggeman and Hibbard continued to play music locally.

"We kind of went our own ways after a while," Myers said. "Life happened, things happened."

Four years ago, it was Myers who reached out to his friends and former bandmates to see if they would like to play together again.

La Cosa Nostra initially consisted of the original Paris lineup -- Myers on drums, Lawless on lead guitar, Brueggeman on bass and Hibbard on vocals -- as well as Matt Lawless on the keyboards and guitar. However, shortly after the band formed, Hibbard left the band and Eric Bichsel filled his spot.

Bichsel left the band in 2016, and the band went on hiatus while it began to search for a new vocalist. In March 2017, Andrew Humphrey, who was previously in West of Greenwich, joined as the new singer.

Originally, La Cosa Nostra chose which songs to cover based on what would please them the most as musicians.

"We wanted to do our thing. That was the whole La Cosa Nostra deal, for us, for our family of guys who have been playing together," Myers said. "We want to play the music we want to play, music that nobody else plays."

La Cosa Nostra plays an eclectic mix of rock, covering songs by the Cars, the Police, Tool, Ozzy Osbourne and others.

"It's a huge variety of things going on. People come watch us play, and they're like ‘Holy cow. We didn't expect you guys to play that song after playing that song,'" Myers said.

As a drummer, Myers likes to play progressive rock, like Tool and Rush, the best.

"If it's physically challenging and mentally challenging, I want to play it," he said.

One of La Cosa Nostra's biggest draws, Myers says, is the fact that the band plays everything live on the stage.

"People who see us know that we're playing everything verbatim. There's no cheating," he said.

Another draw, of course, is the band's unique set list.

"We're not playing the same-old, same-old that everybody plays all the time," Myers said. "Part of this, again, is for us to please ourselves musically, but we also want to reach a group of people that want to hear songs they don't normally get to hear. It's the songs nobody dares to touch, if you will."

In short, Myers says the night will consist of a good live band playing good songs at a good venue.

"Try something new. Check out La Cosa Nostra," he said.