DH: Thank you for joining us gentlemen and lady. We are with the Homemade Jamz band – a true family band. They were the youngest band ever to compete in the international blues challenge, nominated blues music awards, and we’re going to get to know them better. They traveled from Henderson, Kentucky at the WC Handy music awards tonight, so welcome here, we’re looking forward to your show, it’s going to be fabulous. So for our readers who can’t see you, you’re kind of young. How old are you all and how did you come to be musicians?
Ryan: I’m the oldest, my name is Ryan Perry, I do lead guitar and vocals. I’m 22 years old.
Kyle: My name is Kyle Perry and I’m on bass and I’m 20 years old.
Taya: My name is Taya Perry and I’m the drummer and I’m 15.
DH: How did you all get started?
Ryan: Basically my dad was in the military and he was looking for a boredom buster so he bought a guitar and harmonica. He didn’t quite figure out how to play it so he packed it up and moved us all to Germany where I found the guitar and harmonica and he showed me one or two blues tunes that he knew and from there he says that I just took off. When he retired we all moved back to Mississippi and that’s when my brother ended up on bass guitar and we had a little duo just having fun and next thing you know my sister wanted to play so she got on drums. That’s how it all went down.
DH: How long ago was that?
Taya: That was almost 9 years ago.
DH: Were you always a bass player?
Kyle: I came on as a bass player years later, I tried out the piano and I tried guitar and both of them didn’t work for me so I landed on bass and here I am.
DH: Do you guys have any early musical influences or mentors that you emulate or do you just do your own thing?
In my opinion we take from as many people as we’ve ever listened to.
Ryan: In my opinion we take from as many people as we’ve ever listened to. I’ve got an old mentor his name is James Harris – we call him Jabo – he lives in Shannon Mississippi. He’s the one that taught me the blues style and how to feel what I’m playing. Other than that we just take a little bit from everyone.
DH: That’s nice, that’s usually the way it is. The influence comes from creole, African, southern, funk, jazz, rhythm and blues, Chicago a little more urban blues but it’s a gumbo and most people make it their own way. Glad to hear that. I wanted to make a side comment, I saw your show a few years ago with some homemade instruments and smoke coming out a tube at the end and we went wild. Tell us the story – you guys made your own or you made them look like parts?
Kyle: My dad is the one that designed and built them. The story goes, he was helping me on my first car and I bought some mufflers for them and when they came in the mail he wanted to make some guitars out of them instead of putting them on the car. I told him no at first and he took them from me anyways and two weeks later he comes out with the very first guitar. No knowledge of how to build a guitar, he just wanted to try it. Turned out it worked and looked great, the first guitar is in the B.B. King museum now, the guitar that you see me playing is guitar number 14.
DH: Any home made drums coming out yet?
Taya: Nah, not yet.
[pullquote]Turned out it worked and looked great, the first guitar is in the B.B. King museum now, the guitar that you see me playing is guitar number 14.[/pullquote]
DH: Whose your- who do you like?
Taya: Sheila E. is my biggest inspiration, but are you talking about drums? What I play now is a Gretsch drum set, but I love my Pearls.
DH: What about on bass, what’d ya like?
Kyle: Oh my favorite brand is Dean, as far as amps I love Mark bass [amplifiers].
DH: What label do you record for right now and what’s new in the pipeline?
Ryan: Right now we’re independent for the past two albums and we’re going to work on the fifth album after this summer tour of ours.
DH: Mississippi Hill Country was the last one, and that one 2013, any particular songs that resonate on there for you?
Ryan: “Mississippi Hill Country” and “Buy One Get One Free.”