Patchwork Monkey has existed in a few incarnations for quite a while! The most recent rebirth of the band has been when our dear drummer, Larry Allen joined us in the winter of 2013/2014... While some of the patches on the monkey have moved on and around a bit over the years, the two founding members, the incorrigible Alec Stanley and the irrepressable Rebecca "Nebula" Sites, have stayed the core of the band, adopting the perfect monkey brothers to finish making this the band you know and love! Long Live Patchwork Monkey!!!!
Founding Members then (above) and now (below)
p.s. Alec and Rebecca got hitched on June 14th 2014. Yes, Patchwork Monkey is a love magnet!
So maybe you know a little about the band as it is in the present, but here is a little history. We wouldn't be where we are now without the help of all the present, and former members of this evolving band, so here is a nod to our dear "patches." In 1999/2000 Alec and Rebecca appeared on the midnight live show of WYOU's special Y2K New Year's show. This was their first year in Madison, and may that tape remain forever obscure, but thus their duo was born. Thor, Rebecca's son, was baby New Year for the show (an adorable 1 year old at the time) and it was Rebecca's 29th birthday to boot. (well, until midnight anyway)
Thus a tradition was born, and Alec and Rebecca put a show on for their friends and loved ones every year for Rebecca's b-day party, and "Patchwork Monkey" was born as such a name with the addition of Thomas Yellowfeather, another guitarist. Acoustic blues and a bit of folk was the color of the band... Rebecca did a sketch of the monkey based on Alec's jovial appearance, and Patchwork the Patriarch was the rallying flyer/invitation/host
So here is a list of the wonderful musicians who have helped propel the Patchwork Monkey project on his marvelous musical adventure:
Guitar-Thomas Yellowfeather, Zen Cats, Yellowfeather massage was a founding member and spent a couple years in Rebecca's living room with her and Alec making music while son, Thor, slept growing from toddler to terror to teenager (jury out on the adjective... see the song: "Thor's Locker")
Bass-Ben Johnson of wavelength studios, http://www.wavelengthpros.com/ Gadjo Players, Beefus, The Vandelays, New Speedway Players, and The Barb Cheron players agreed to a stint with the monkey while we honed our performance chops and repertoire. He's a killer bass player, and a very talented tech monkey. He did the some of the demo recordings we still love like Reflection (on this site).
Drums-Matt Kreuger is Ben's backbone, can be found where Ben is found. He is a drumming GOD. Listen to him on the old studio version of St. James if you get a chance...
Guitar-Jason Vitela-a stellar rockin' blues guitarist, laid it down. Proud papa, busy man, and only could ride the monkey for a year or so. You can hear him shred on a couple studio and live recordings we got kickin' around...
Drums-Graham Thorbrogger-solid Viking fella. He rode the monkey for a couple of seasons, he has mojo for the hand-drums and still warms the skins with bands like The Handphibians and The Samba Novistas. We've got some good pics of him rockin'g with us on Inferno stage in our gallery, it was legendary.
Drums-Joel Croyle-complicated hard rocker, composer, writer, and Renaissance man. Patchwork Monkey propelled him into his next stage. He just released his solo album! He was our drummer for a few seasons, and is still our go-to guy for sitting in.
Drums -Miracle Maxwell Slater, Earl Shoemaker- Nuanced listener, clever beatmaker, tight grooveshaker. We miss our Earl! We gigged hard the year he was ours, but fate divided us, leaving us with fond memories and a few pics to prove it...
Drums-Rob (AreJay)Murphy- beatwriter, laughter generator, sweet talented, popular young fella. He is still being courted by a number of talented regional bands.
Bass-Erik Reidasch - friend of the band, Groovulous Glove, Bagdhad Scuba Review, The Material Boys. He special guested with us at the Inferno. Damn good musician, all round awesome guy.
Hand percussion and harmonica-Marko Oles- honorable guest and friend of the monkey. He's been known to make special appearances, and put in some time songcrafting.
While Blake Gilmore started out as a Patchwork Monkey drummer, he became our keys player that you know and love today in short order. Cuz he's a friggin' genius.
And, while Ben Johnson began as our bassist, back in the days that the Monkey was primordial soup, he now is our recording engineer, the guy who made our CD "Happy Now" sound so awesome!
Goes to show, once a patch on the monkey, always a patch on the monkey...
Love and thanks to all our patches!