FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Daron Jenkins, Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcomes young up-and-comer, Dmitry Willis, into the fray
October 2015 – Eleventh Ward guitarist of 4 years, Greg Llewellyn recently decided to step away from the music scene to take time to focus more on his career, new home and family. Greg’s immense talent and passion for music will be missed amongst the ranks of his bandmates, but his influence will be felt as they continue to push on after adding lead guitarist Dmitry Willis.
“I’ve been a fan of Greg’s since the first time I heard him play at an open mic in Hoboken. Every time I wrote a song it seemed like he had the perfect riff or solo to accompany it. He will be sorely missed as one of the founding members of the group.” said lead vocalist and co-founder, Chris Saunders.
Bassist, Ben Krupit, reminisces: “When I joined the band, and it was my first time playing with a band in Manhattan, getting to play with Greg was great in that he really knew the tunes and was such a consistent player. The energy that Dmitry brings to the table makes the songs feel new again, and I’m really looking forward to the start of this new chapter for Eleventh Ward.”
Dmitry Willis, the Russian-born and San Francisco-raised self-taught guitarist, joins Eleventh Ward at an integral point in the band’s career as they look to grow their fan base, play bigger venues and spread their music outside the limits of New York City. Heavily influenced by greats like Jimi Hendrix, John Frusciante and Eddie Hazel, Dmitry picked up the guitar his senior year of high school and never looked back. His playing style can be described as blues-driven psychedelic rock, a diversity that is all too welcome by the soulful rock band out of NYC.
”From the get go all of the guys gave me a warm welcome and gave me the confidence to play our first show together within a couple of weeks, with only 1 rehearsal prior.” says Dmitry. “You know you’re playing with the right people when all you need is get together in one room and let the music come out naturally on its own.”
The newly acquired guitarist played his first gig with the band (and first gig ever) at Lower East Side mainstay, Pianos, to huge avail and seems to fit in perfectly with Chris, Ben and drummer, Justin “Jett” Carter. Dmitry is eager to earn his stripes and start building his musical resume while lending his immense talent and fast fingers to Eleventh Ward’s sound.
Dmitry looks back on his first performance: “Our first show together was better than I could ever have hoped for. After I got on stage all of my worries dissipated and once I played the first note, everything just synced into place. It’s the best feeling in the world when you can just let go and get lost in the music.”
“He was amazing. He learned the songs in a short time frame, asked a lot of questions and really showed initiative and energy. I was almost annoyed at how good he was, because I’m usually used to people telling me how well I did, not telling me how good our guitarist is.” Chris says jokingly.
Eleventh Ward was founded in 2010 when lead vocalist, Chris Saunders, began performing in NYC with his first show at, since shut down, Don Hills. The band has now grown from single performer to a 4-piece unit with great chemistry. There have been many different pieces throughout the years, but the current group consists of Chris Saunders, Ben Krupit, “Jett” Carter and Dmitry Willis.
Eleventh Ward will be playing on October 15th at The Bitter End at 8pm for the heralded CMJ Music Marathon and have also been invited to play along the route of the NYC Marathon on November 1st.
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