Blue Healer Creates "Pop Music with Teeth" on the Austin Scene

by Jake Navarro, Oct 1, 2015

Local trio, Blue Healer, who describes their repertoire of music as "pop music with teeth" took the stage with UK group, The Maccabees, for their Official 2015 ACL Fest Late Night Show at The Parish on October 1, 2015. 

MyCityATX sat down with Blue Healer at one of their shows at Cheer Up Charlie's to get some more insight on the band's unique sound, current work and how they are able to put a "Blue Healer" stamp on any music they produce.

Click picture to listen to single 30,000 FT. Photo by Alexis Davis

Click picture to listen to single 30,000 FT. Photo by Alexis Davis

The music Blue Healer produces mirrors how the trio is on and off the stage. It's fun, smooth and gets you grooving. With their March release of "30,000 FT" posted on Bandcamp, you're able to give your price for the single. 

"TOGETHER--WE ARE BLUE HEALER," the band says dramatically in unison.

The guys quickly display their fun nature as soon as we sit down.

We get to talking about their name. Ironically, it was only suppose to be a song title. Frontman and upright-bass player, David Beck, tells MyCityATX that it was a song title without lyrics and decided that would be a name that made sense. 

"Although it's spelled differently, I think it's fun to explain the night of the first show involving a Blue Heeler," keys and vocalist, Bryan Mammel starts. 

"We were sitting outiside Sam's Burger Joint in San Antonio before our show, there was this lady that had this huge Blue Heeler. We complimented the dog, but the owner didn't say a word back to us. We're convinced she wasn't real--or if she was real, she was a ghost," Beck finishes. 

Blue Healer performs 30,000 ft. live in Firestation Studios, San Marcos, TX.

As we continue to their single, Mammel chimes in, "Even though we've been around the country together--I can't count how many times--it's fun that [30,000 FT] feels so new." 

"We have some elements that are sonically pretty dance-driven and more semi-electronic, but sometimes I feel songwriting becomes secondary to artists. They may have a dance track, then put some words over it. We start from the ground up, starting with one instrument then build around it," Beck explains when the topic of being different on the Austin scene arises. 

If you only get one thing from Blue Healer, it's definitely going to be the element of their "butt-grabbing-music" as Mammel notes. Strong melodies and well played instruments tend to have that effect on the crowds the band performs for.

Drummer and vocalist, Dees Stribling, gives us some insight when we ask about using different instruments at once to create a certain sound. 

"It's a half necessity and half because it's new and fun. It's exciting," he says.

Stribling triggers a number of samples on a Sampling Percussion Pad while he drums during the set, and, so far, it's paying off. The new sound additions mesh well with what the band is able to produce organically. Beck weighs in. 

We had this idea for [using samples and tracks] before we actually tried it out. I’m really happy that it works. We’ve never played with tracks behind us and ran samples with what we play. When we put it into action, we can pull it off and not just be occupied by trying to do a bunch of stuff, too. That’s no good, either. You still have to put on a show.
— David Beck

The band enjoys hearing the self-proclaimed "pop-music-with-teeth" sound is accessible and different at the same time.  Blue Healer lends that exact familiar sound while letting the audience "walk through a new landscape," which enables the guys to properly stamp their uniqueness on each track they write and produce. 

"Sound changes over time, but if it remains familiar, then that's a perfect place to be," Mammel stresses.  

Beck concludes, "We're not trying to freak anyone out or blow people's minds with sounds. I like to deliver something that's palatable." 

Blue Healer's live act is definitely something to check out for the Austin scene. Their different sound creates a need to scout out when they're playing next after you leave their show. 

Besides being crazy-cool and nice, this trio gets you moving. If you're living in the good ol' 512 or are passing through, Blue Healer is one keep an eye on. Make sure to keep up with these guys!

You can follow Blue Healer at www.bluehealerusa.com and on Twitter at @BlueHealerUSA