Max Creek

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Max Creek
Origin Connecticut, USA
Genres Rock
Years active 1971–Present
Associated acts BK3
Website www.maxcreek.com
Members John Rider (bass, vocals)
Scott Murawski (guitar, vocals)
Mark Mercier (keyboards, vocals)
Bill Carbone (drums)
Jamemurrell Stanley (percussion)
Past members Dave Reed (guitar, vocals)
Bob Gosselin (drums)
Amy Fazzano (vocals)
Rob Fried (percussion, vocals) (deceased)
Greg Deguglielmo (drums)
Scott Allshouse (drums, vocals)
Greg Vasso (drums)

Max Creek is an American rock band that was formed by Dave Reed, John Rider and Bob Gosselin in 1971. Max Creek has a loyal following, and put on an annual music festival in upstate New York, dubbed Camp Creek, and was one of the longest running festivals on the East Coast when it took a hiatus in 2008. The festival returned to Maine in the summer of 2011.

History[edit]

Max Creek was formed in 1971, with Dave Reed on acoustic guitar, John Rider on electric bass and Bob Gosselin on drums.[1] The band originally played country music. In 1972, Dave Reed invited one of his music students, 15 year old Scott Murawski, to sit in with the band. Scott's early original association with the band ended abruptly when he was banned from a club that the band played at regularly for drinking a beer. A few months later Dave Reed came down with appendicitis, so Mark Mercier was brought in on keyboards and Scott was invited back to play guitar. Due to the influence of the Grateful Dead, the band decided to incorporate more improvisation into the music becoming more electrified.[2] The music of the psychedelic era had a heavy influence on the band, leading to a sound and style more like that of the Grateful Dead and the rest of the San Francisco Bay scene. Eventually, Dave left the band to pursue country rock and acoustic ragtime music, leaving the band's line up as John, Bob, Scott and Mark.

Percussionist Rob Fried joined the band in 1979. Known for his elaborate stage setup, often with dozens drums and percussion pieces, Fried could always be easily identified in a club or hall thanks to his trademark Panama hat, Hawaiian shirt and dark glasses. Fried left the band in 2004 and died of cancer on September 6, 2006.

Amy (Barefoot) Fazzano was a vocalist with the band from July 1976 until September 10, 1983.

Bob Gosselin left the band in 1985 and was replaced on drums by Greg DeGuglielmo.

Bob Bloom was an occasional second drummer and percussionist in 1976.

Greg Vasso replaced DeGuglielmo in 1991, and stayed until 1996. At that point, Scott Allshouse took over and was with the band until 2011 when Bill Carbone replaced him. Jamemurrell Stanley is the band's current percussionist.

As of 2012, Max Creek is still actively playing shows, most recently celebrating their 40th anniversary in Costa Rica with Bill Kreutzmann of the Grateful Dead in a series of shows dubbed Jungle Jam.

Members[edit]

Current members[edit]

  • Scott Murawski - guitar, vocals (1972, 1973–present)
  • Mark Mercier - keyboards, vocals (1973–present)
  • John Rider - bass, vocals (1971–present)
  • Bill Carbone - drums (2011-present)
  • Jamemurrell Stanley - drums (2011–present)

Former Members[edit]

  • Dave Reed - guitar, vocals (1971–1974)
  • Bob Gosselin - drums (1971–1985)
  • Amy Fazzano - vocals (1976–1983)
  • Rob Fried - percussion, vocals (1979–2004)
  • Greg DeGuglielmo - drums (1985–1991)
  • Greg Vasso - drums (1991–1996; 2004-2011)
  • Scott Allshouse - drums (1996–2011)

Music[edit]

Max Creek's style of intense improvised jams were a significant influence on such later bands as Phish, whose bassist Mike Gordon has referred to Max Creek as one of his “favorite bands,” and has sat in with the band several times over the past few years.[3] On January 5, 2008, Gordon played with Max Creek's Scott Murawski, as well as the Grateful Dead's Bill Kreutzmann, at a benefit concert in Costa Rica.[4] Live shows are the band's forte, often lasting three hours or more. Creek, as they are known, peaked in popularity in the late 1980s, when they would play more than 200 shows a year. They decided to cut back drastically on touring in the early 1990s to concentrate on family, and today play only a handful of shows a year. The loss of sound engineer John Archer and his Crystal Clear sound system in the early 1990s was a devastating blow for Creek and their fans, as was the decision to stop touring at the time that the jam band scene was heating up.

Discography[edit]

  • (1977) Max Creek
  • (1980) Rainbow
  • (1982) Drink the Stars
  • (1986) Windows
  • (1990) MCMXC
  • (1998) Spring Water
  • (2000) Live at the Connecticut Expo Center 12/31/1999

The band has been working on a box set to be called "Maxology", which is set to document the band's evolution throughout its career.

Live Recordings[edit]

A number of the band's live performances are available for download from Archive.org.[5]

Additional Projects[edit]

Recently Murawaski has received long overdue recognition with BK3 (aka Bill Kreutzmann Trio, KBM, Three) which also includes Bill Kreutzmann of the Grateful Dead and Bonnie Raitt bassist James "Hutch" Hutchinson.

Murawski also occasionally tours with Phish bassist Mike Gordon side projects.

Murawski and Mercier often play acoustic duo concerts.

Mercier has 2 side projects. One is "The Marks Brothers" which includes himself on keyboards and vocals, Mark Paradis from The Mark Paradis Band on guitar and vocals, Scott Guberman from Rev Tor Band on Hammond B3 and vocals, Dave Stoltz formerly of Dickey Betts and Great Southern on bass and Brian "duke" Konopka formerly from S.L.A.P. and The Mark Paradis Band on drums. His other band that plays a few shows throughout the year is "The Mark Mercier Band"

Mercier and Paradis often play acoustic duo gigs around the CT area, dubbed "Mark and Mark"

Bill Carbone regularly appears in "The Z3," an organ trio dedicated to the music of Frank Zappa featuring organist Beau Sasser (Alan Evans Trio, Akashic Record) and guitarist Tim Palmieri (Breakfast, Kung Fu).

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]