The Bayonets, who are about to release their first album, will perform music from it live July 24 in a special one-night show in Hollywood. The show will be held beginning at 8 p.m. at No Vacancy, 1727 N Hudson Ave, Los Angeles. The group is composed of lead vocalist and guitarist Brian Ray, who when he's not with the Bayonets plays guitar with Paul McCartney, drummer Oliver Leiber, son of legendary songwriter Jerry Leiber, and Lucrecia López Sanz of Argentina's Nube 9 on guitar/vocals.
“Brian and I have known each other for 18 years, probably longer,” said Leiber, talking about how the group came together. “We've worked together on a couple of Brian's solo projects. He approached me to do some writing with him which we did on a couple of his records. And so we were just friends and fellow musicians and had a writing rapport already.
“We were sitting around probably a year and a half ago or close to it. Brian was off tour. I was kind of in between projects. We were hanging out in my backyard where the studio is. And we just kind of looked at each other and said, 'Let's do something together.' Let's do a band.”
Leiber said they wanted to “write songs that we feel like writing in this moment that are reflective of where we're at and kind of what we want to do without any boundaries and trying to fit into this or that market.
“In our case, the writing process really flows. It's just fun and easy to get together and write.”
“We really didn't have a plan for it either,” adds Brian Ray. “When we were done with it, we said, 'Let's write as much as we have time for and then we'll figure out what we want to do. And then we thought, 'Well, we don't have time for a whole album. Let's just release a series of singles.”
And they have. The group has released three singles digitally all of which reached the top 10 of the Classic Rock Mediabase radio chart. The most recent was the title song “Crash! Boom! Bang!” “Little Steven’s Underground Garage” premiered the tune, singling it out as its “coolest song in the world” track.
“It was really surprising to both of us,” Leiber said. “We had humble intentions. We were going to release these songs one at a time on social media and do a grass roots thing without expectation.”
Their first song, “Sucker For Love,” got the attention of Little Steven Van Zandt, who made it “The Coolest Song in the World” on his show. “Kind of took off after that. He championed us and from there it's just been a fun, unexpected little ride.”
Among the guests on the album is Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, who appears on a track called “Vagabond Soul.” “We were really lucky to have Steven Tyler sing harmony with me and an amazing ripping blues harmonica solo," says Ray. "He came into sing a harmony and ended up singing a whole wall of Steven Tyler.” Also on the album are Adam MacDougall from Black Crowes, Davey Faragher from Elvis Costello's band, Larry Taylor (The Mole) from Canned Heat and Scott Shriner from Weezer.
The event Thursday night will include both a performance and Q&A with the band. Admission is free. “We're going to be singing and playing a 30-minute set culled from our Bayonets' record which will be released on July 29,” Ray says. “So we're be premiering a couple of new songs that no one's ever heard before and playing the singles that everyone has heard.”
Space is limited at the club. Although there will be no admission, donations will be accepted for the charity Adopt The Arts which helps puts musical instruments into the hands of students from inner city schools in Los Angeles.