The Felice Brothers

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The Felice Brothers
The Felice Brothers perform at Mountain Jam 2008. Left to right: Farley, James, Christmas (back), Ian
The Felice Brothers perform at Mountain Jam 2008. Left to right: Farley, James, Christmas (back), Ian
Background information
OriginNew York, United States
GenresRock, Americana, folk rock, country rock, roots rock
Years active2006–present
LabelsLoose, Fat Possum, Team Love Yep Roc
Associated actsThe Duke & the King, Conor Oberst, Titus Andronicus
MembersIan Felice
James Felice
Will Lawrence
Jesske Hume
Past membersSimone Felice
Dave Turbeville
Josh Rawson
Greg Farley
David Estabrook

The Felice Brothers are an American folk rock/country rock band from New York.[1]


The Felice Brothers got their start as a band playing in the New York City subway.[2] They lived in a little apartment in Brooklyn[2] and would play in the subway stations at 42nd Street and Union Square and in Greenwich Village.[3] The three brothers originally hail from Palenville, New York[2] in the Catskill Mountains.

Now they tour the country, traveling in their "Short Bus".[1] Their 2006 self-released debut album was Through These Reins and Gone[4] followed by Tonight At the Arizona released in 2007 through Loose.[2] Through These Reins and Gone made it onto Radio Woodstock WDST's top 25 albums of 2006. About their album Adventures of the Felice Brothers Vol. 1 James Felice said, "We put one record out on an English label (Loose), and we've released all the other stuff ourselves" (on their label 'New York Pro').[4] The Felice Brothers have played at Levon Helm's Midnight Ramble in Woodstock, New York and also toured with Bright Eyes in the fall of 2007.[3]


Felice Brothers perform at Newport Folk Festival 2008
Simone Felice performing with The Felice Brothers at the Bearsville Theater in Woodstock, NY in April 2008

On January 7, it was announced The Felice Brothers had signed a record deal with Team Love Records in the US.[5][6] They toured the United States extensively during the spring (February through mid-April), to promote their new album. The Brothers played at Mountain Jam at Hunter Mountain again this year. They also played at the 2008 Clearwater Festival, Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tennessee, the Philadelphia Folk Festival in Schwenksville, Pennsylvania, All Points West Music and Arts Festival at Liberty State Park in Jersey City, and Outside lands music and arts festival in San Francisco, the latter two festivals being inaugural events.

In August, the band performed at the legendary Newport Folk Festival. Due to torrential rains, high winds, and lightning storms, power was cut to the entire Newport, Rhode Island area. As the stage the band was performing on had no generators, the band played unplugged. They performed for over an hour with such songs as "Frankie's Gun!" and a sing-a-long to "This Land Is Your Land".


The Felice Brothers joined Old Crow Medicine Show, Justin Townes Earle and the Dave Rawlings Machine for a nine-city package tour called The Big Surprise Tour, after the lead track from the Yonder is the Clock album. Kicking off on August 4, 2009 at the Casino Ballroom in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire, the tour travelled around the eastern United States before wrapping up at the World's Fair Park in Knoxville, Tennessee, on August 14, 2009.[7]


The Felice Brothers opened for the Dave Matthews Band at four concerts in Canada and the US, starting at the Molson Amphitheatre in Toronto on June 1, 2010. They also appeared at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco on October 3. In late September and early October the band reunited for four shows with Conor Oberst. All the shows were in California. They appeared at the End of the Road Festival, Larmer Tree Gardens, Dorset, England in September.


The Felice Brothers released the single "Ponzi" on March 29. It was the first single from their newest album "Celebration, Florida" which released on May 10 on Fat Possum (USA) and May 23 on Loose in Europe.


The Felice Brothers released a collection of songs on July 18 entitled "God Bless You, Amigo". It is a mixture of previously unreleased original songs and covers of classic folk songs. Shortly thereafter drummer Dave Turbeville was replaced by drummer David Estabrook.


On December 30, 2013, Dell launched their commercial called “Beginnings.” It was made by Y&R, New York advertising agency, and features a cover of The Drifters' hit "This Magic Moment" performed by The Felice Brothers.[8]


The band has two main members, Ian and James Felice. Former members include their brother Simone Felice, their friend Josh "Christmas Clapton" Rawson, frequently described as a traveling dice player,[9] fiddle player Greg Farley, and drummer David Estabrook. At other times, they have featured a horn section in the band, composed of local Hudson Valley musicians. Ian is the main vocalist and plays the guitar and piano. James contributes vocals and plays the accordion, organ, and piano. Christmas plays the bass guitar. Dave Turbeville played the drums from 2009-2012, performing on Celebration, Florida, Poughkeepsie Princess, Mixtape, and God Bless You, Amigo. Simone Felice was the drummer as well as a vocalist and a guitarist. Simone is also an author, having released books entitled Goodbye Amelia, Hail Mary, Full of Holes and Black Jesus. Simone Felice left the Felice Brothers in 2009. He now leads his own band - The Duke & the King (named after the duo of con-artists in Mark Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn) with Robert "Chicken" Burke. They released their debut album - Nothing Gold Can Stay on Loose / Ramseur Records August 4, 2009, followed by Long Live the Duke & King in 2010. Simone released a self-titled album in 2012, followed that up with an album titled Strangers in 2014, and then released his third album titled The Projector in 2018.


Year Album Label Chart Peak
2005 Iantown Self-released
2006 Through These Reins and Gone Purest Searcher
2007 Tonight At The Arizona Loose / CORTEX
2007 Adventures of The Felice Brothers Vol. 1 Carpenter
2008 The Felice Brothers Team Love / New York Pro / Loose
2009 Yonder Is The Clock Team Love US Billboard 200[10] 20
2010 Mix Tape New York Pro
2011 Celebration, Florida Fat Possum / Loose US Billboard 200[10] 5
2011 Poughkeepsie Princess EP self-released
2012 God Bless You, Amigo self-released
2014 Favorite Waitress Dualtone
2015 Felice Navidad self-released
2016 Life in the Dark Yep Roc
2016 Country Ham Yep Roc
2017 Tonight At The Arizona Ltd Ed re-issue for Record Store Day Loose
2019 Undress Yep Roc

Cultural references[edit]

  • The end of the song "Frankie's Gun!" is featured in the British sitcom Outnumbered's 2009 Christmas Special, where all the family are seen singing along to it in the closing sequence.
  • The song "Whiskey In My Whiskey" is playing on the jukebox in Merlotte's bar in episode 7 of the first season of True Blood on HBO.[11]
  • The song "Penn Station" was featured in the weather section on the Welcome to Night Vale podcast in 2014


  1. ^ a b Bumgardner, Ed, 8 November 2007, 'Music Notes: Felice Brothers are earthy, their music visceral' Relish Now!.
  2. ^ a b c d Fleming, Amy, 2007-11-26, 'We don't care if we suck', The Guardian.
  3. ^ a b Barry, John W., 22 November 2007, 'Felice Brothers: Band enjoying living its music', Poughkeepsie Journal.
  4. ^ a b Lisle, Andria, 2 November 2007, 'Roots-revivalist wind propels earthy band', Commercialappeal.
  5. ^ "Brotherly Love: Please Welcome the Felice Brothers!". Team Love Records. January 7, 2008. Retrieved April 11, 2011.
  6. ^ Partridge, Kenneth (October 2008). "The Felice Brothers - backwoods bros go back to basics". The Deli Magazine. Retrieved April 11, 2011. They ultimately settled on Team Love, and earlier this year, the label issued the band's first domestic full-length. The self-titled collection features a handful of new songs, as well as material from hard-to-find early releases, such as “The Adventures of the Felice Brothers, Vol. 1.” The album was released through Loose in Europe.
  7. ^ Chinen, Nate (August 7, 2009). "A Friendly Stage for Roots Music". The New York Times. Retrieved April 11, 2011.
  8. ^ Lowensohn, Josh (2013-12-31). "Dell touts its humble startup soul in new 'Beginnings' ad spot". The Verge. Retrieved 2016-06-24.
  9. ^ Winship, Ian (2012-04-18). "Christmas Clapton from 'The Felice Brothers' talks about the band and their music". Retrieved 2018-07-30.
  10. ^ a b "The Felice Brothers Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard.
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on April 28, 2010. Retrieved May 4, 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External links[edit]