Brendan & the Strangest Ways is an Alternative-country band based out of Buffalo, New York. It’s a sound that perfectly captures Americas’s Rust Belt… a little weathered, a little rough around the edges, a lot more substance than style. It’s a story of countless miles traveled searching for something that always felt just a little out of reach, then finally returning back home to uncover what you’d been looking for all along.
As 2021 winds down, songwriter Brendan Shea seems primed to capitalize on his perseverance during a decade-long journey that saw him living and playing on and around all three U.S. Coasts. Backed by veterans of Buffalo’s Alt-country scene and former members of the regionally-renowned group Bareback Jack (Pete Wilson: drums, Paul Belardi: bass, Tommy Bijak: lead guitar, Eric Zak: keys … as well as Cantwell Function frontwoman Coni Majchrowicz on harmony vocals) Brendan’s stage performances sound better than they ever have.
The same can be said of the latest studio album, Are We Sure The Dawn Is Coming? recorded at County Q Productions in Nashville. Brendan’s delivery and cadence walks the line between comfort and conflict, as he invites the listener along on his traveler’s journey. The sessions were performed by a genuine who’s who of Alt-country players in a single afternoon.
“To let go of the regins, trust a roomful of strangers, and let it all happen organically was a different and sort of uncomfortable method for me, cause I’ve always been a planner,” says Brendan. “But these guys had wonderful instincts. They honed in on all the built-in melodic nuances, and the things that they improvised sounded like they had always belonged there. I’m finally hearing everything out loud the way it’s always sounded in my head.”
For reviews on Dawn Is Coming? please visit our press page.
Brendan cut his teeth in the thriving Austin songwriter scene, which he’s aptly referred to as “musician boot camp.” He adopted his band moniker and recorded his full-length debut in the vibrant music city of Seattle. He spent a year in an RV crossing the country to carve out his audience in true grassroots fashion. To come back to his native Buffalo and build the perfect band in a place discovering its second wind, starting to realize its full, untapped potential, seems especially fitting for the journeyman songwriter. Anyone who gets to know this music would agree that it finds the perfect home in a town who’s best days are still to come.