The Belle Brigade: No Sibling Rivalry Here…

UPDATE: Nice to see and hear The Belle Brigade last night, this time around on Conan, doing “Loser”! They’re about to embark on a tour with K.D. Lang. Check out their web site for dates. Their debut self-titled album was just released. Check them out!

What a breath of fresh air The Belle Brigade performances are on Jimmy Kimmel this past Tuesday. The brother and sister-fronted, L.A. based band performed “Where Not To Look” and “Losers” (from their just released self-titled debut) with a spontaneous zeal that only live performance can reveal. I was particularly drawn to Barbara Gruska’s unbridled singing and drumming — the latter being her primary instrument.

Ethan and Barbara Gruska sing together like only siblings can and their songwriting is at once fresh and deliciously derivative of classic bands like Fleetwood Mac. There’s a family thread of musicality that certainly informs their talent. Dad, Jay Gruska, is an extraordinarily prolific journeyman composer/songwriter having written songs recorded by Michael Jackson, Chicago, Robert Palmer to name a few, and on-going TV and Film work. Grandfather is film composer John Williams…. enough said.

The Belle Brigade is not about fad and fashion, as these Kimmel performances attest. Ethan and Barbara initially appear to be geeky, dressed down, folksy purists. But, there’s obviously much more going on here. Check them out!

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