Artist You Should Know: Q-Pop Radio

The Fresno BeeNovember 20, 2013 

Q-Pop Radio

SPECIAL TO THE BEE

For fans of vinyl music (or those old enough to remember when vinyl was all there was), the sound of the needle as it drops into that first groove is magic. Fun fact: That sound has a name.

It's called a cue pop, and symbolically, it's perfect reference for the band Q-Pop Radio. The band — which features members of the Pink Floyd tribute band Gilmour Floyd — harkens to a time before streaming music and digital downloads, when "the hits" were on the radio.

It's a concept band that started playing mini-tributes to The Hollies, The Grass Roots, Three Dog Night, The Guess Who and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, plus a selection of songs from 1964-1974, that members referred to as "Paisley Set."

Q-Pop Radio plays Friday night at Frank's with the Beatles tribute Beatlesville. The Bee caught up with guitar/organist Tim Pugsley to find out what makes mid-'60s music so dang good.

Let's start with the basics. Who plays what in the band?

Q-Pop is Art Farkas on guitar, Mike Mogan on guitar, Rick Wood on piano, Mark Randle on bass, Fred Funch on drums and me on organ and guitar. Everybody sings, some even have mics.

You aren't the typical "Oldies" cover band. How did you come up with your approach to the live show?

We all love this particular era of music, and very few groups, if any, cover this material. We thought it would be fun to surprise people with music they loved but forgot about.

Why the specific time frame? What's so magical about the mid-'60s to mid-'70s? Or, to put it another way, why are songs from that period so good?

It's a pop-rock cultural goldmine. There are currently plenty of '50s and rockabilly groups, along with '80s and '90s cover bands and tribute acts playing the circuit. Our focus is a period in time that embraced peace and love, the hippie movement, social and political protest, the Summer of Love and Woodstock (the real one) with revolutionary ideas and vibes and new, original sounds.

How do you decide which songs/bands to cover?

First and foremost, all the guys in the band know, love and respect this music. The songs are quirky best friends that we grew up with, so they're like family. However, from an analytical perspective, we also took a good look at the era, combing through Billboard reports and wiki pages to determine what groups had a high number of charting positions.

How important is it to get the sound right for each song?

We try to be as faithful to the original recordings as possible in live performance because — aside from being a kick for us — the emotional impact created by the vintage sounds connecting with people's memories of that moment in time can really zap you back to a special place.

Know a local band or musician more people should be familiar with? Send details to Joshua Tehee at jtehee@fresnobee.com or @joshuatehee on Twitter.

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