Music is an infectious insect, that’s venomous bite can have transformative powers. For Brandon O. Bailey that venom has been particularly potent. Brandon’s musical prowess began to develop at a young age when his aunt bought him a keyboard. As his skill as a keyboardist improved, a vocal talent began to be realized as he began to sing around the house.
The homeschooled Bailey came to have an interest in harmonica music when his grandmother told him that his great-grandfather used to play train music on the “harp” to serenade the family.
After a few years of playing around with a harmonica, Brandon happened upon a new series of instructional youtube videos by blues harmonica legend Adam Gussow. It was through these online videos that not only the framework of Bailey’s style was formed, but also a great friendship was established.
In 2008, Brandon was selected to compete in the semi- final round of a Memphis music competition called the “Orpheum Star Search”. In the competition, Brandon played the J. Geils Band’s harmonica anthem “Whammer Jammer”, which he learned from watching Gussow’s videos. His performance earned him a place in the final round. Gussow attended the semi finals and subsequently offered to give Bailey a lesson in stage craft.
Two months later, after Gussow’s tutelage, Bailey was crowned winner of the Star Search and was awarded the opportunity to perform at the 2009 Jefferson Awards in Washington D.C.
Soon after his performance in the nation’s capital, Bailey traveled to California to attend the annual “Society For the Preservation and Advancement of the Harmonica” national convention, where he left an imprint in the minds of the harmonica legends who were staples at the convention. There was a new kid on the block.
After returning from the convention, Bailey acquired a new device called a looping pedal, which he had seen used by an artist on youtube who called himself Son of Dave. Bailey was intrigued by Son of Dave’s style of music which involved the skilled use of a looping pedal in tangent with beatboxing and harmonica. The music was hypnotic, primal, and very distinctive.
Soon, Bailey’s transformation into a looping artist began. . . . .