Live at St. Boniface

By on January 14, 2015

Megan McDermott’s soulful voice leads her four-piece Lancaster band to the right sound. On Saturday, Jan. 10, at St. Boniface Craft Brewing Company in Ephrata, two of the four members of Meg and the Right Sound brought a mixture of covers and original hits to the musical event, complete with brews and barbecue.

Despite the frigid temperatures, patrons flooded into St. Boniface, braving the cold to go out back and order food from Rocky’s BBQ stand. An orderly line was formed at the bar to order beer. Free popcorn was available for snacking. The crowd was eclectic with groups of young hipsters, parents with children and babies, and older couples out for a Saturday night. One thing the crowd seemed to have in common; they enjoyed beer and Meg and the Right Sound.

Megan McDermott

Megan McDermott

The band members all met at their church, the LCBC Lancaster City Campus where they play monthly. Although their church set list differs from their bar gigs, they do some current songs at church too.

“If people like it and it’s not too offensive, we try to do it,” said McDermott.

On Saturday, she and guitarist Jason Sherman received a warm welcome from the crowd at St. Boniface. The other two band members, Chris Jakubowicz on bass and Jeremy Bentley on drums, weren’t there this night. St. Boniface requested a smaller version of the band due to space and the echoing sound in the establishment.

At most of their gigs, McDermott said nobody usually talks to them, but in Ephrata many people came up and shook their hands.

The crowd clapped for the songs they knew, covers such as “Sweater Weather” by The Neighborhood, “Valerie” by Amy Winehouse, “Take me to Church” by Hozier and “Bang, Bang,” a Cher original that has been covered many times since its release in 1966. All of the songs were covered beautifully, with McDermott’s strong voice echoing over the chatter in the large, open brewery.

David Feinauer of Denver enjoyed a beer with his brother. Usually coming earlier in the day, he was surprised by the crowd, but enjoyed the band and noted that they were having fun.

“Winter time dark beers are better,” Feinauer said of his St. Boniface selection.

In the crowded room with limited seating, he welcomed people to have a seat at his “community table.” The brothers were heading to Black Forest Brewery next, which recently opened in Ephrata.

As the music continued, it was evident that McDermott and Sherman were having a good time. Both appeared to not just be playing music, but feeling it. McDermott lifted her beer glass to the audience as her voice hit the notes.

The band’s friendly and fun personality came through in their set as McDermott announced she was going to do a “super cheesy” cover and asked the audience to bear with her. True to their Facebook description, they burped out the famous pop song, “All about that bass.” This got people dancing in the little space available for it.

Jason Sherman

Jason Sherman

“We try to be current, and do not follow the Top 40 Chart of typical bar band cover songs,” said Sherman. “We pretty much play none of them. We play songs that we like.”

The band currently has about six or seven originals. McDermott writes the lyrics with the help of Sherman and their friend, Michael Ferrari. Once lyrics are created, the full band works together to combine it with a musical idea. With plans to start recording in March, the band has been booking less gigs and focusing on their song writing.

“We learned a lot of music in a short amount of time,” said McDermott, who is grateful for so many places to play in Lancaster. On a normal month, the band has four to six gigs.

When not performing, McDermott works as a photo editor at the WebstaurantStore in Lititz and is a wife and mother. Sherman is a home builder at Keystone Custom Homes. They described Jakubowicz as an Internet genius and wicked bass player. Bentley does cartoons on the side for a web comic and works for Packaging Corporation of America (PCA) in packaging design.

Meg and the Right Sound, MRS for short, came up with their band name with the help of Ferrari.

“I love that the initials are ‘Mrs.’,” McDermott said, noting that she is not sure how the rest of the band feels about being a Mrs.

Their description, “We’re bluesy as folk,” came from McDermott being silly one day.

“It said lots of things without saying lots of things,” McDermott added.

They ended their set with Katy Perry’s, “Roar,” adding their own spin to the popular song.

“Everything that we do is original,” said Sherman. “The way that we cover things is original.”

Hear Meg and the Right Sound at their upcoming gigs, The Horse Inn on Feb. 19 and 551 West on Feb. 27. Enjoy the next live show at St. Boniface Craft Brewery on Feb. 21 with the Josh Olmstead Band.

Lenay Ruhl is a correspondent for the Lititz Record Express. She welcomes your comments and questions at lenay.ruhl@gmail.com.

Rocky’s BBQ food truck kept patrons warm and well-fed. (Photos by Dick Wanner)

Rocky’s BBQ food truck kept patrons warm and well-fed. (Photos by Dick Wanner)

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