The trouble with being a musician, or actor for that matter, is that it takes an incredible amount of work, dedication, talent and time before you can make a living at it. In the meantime, there are day jobs - low pay but low commitment employment that buys food and pays the rent. For a lot of musicians, the day job evolves into something decent and a decision has to be made. Take the security of the job or follow your dreams? In the case of the Rogers Sisters, they were able to do both.
Detroit natives Jennifer (vocals/guitar) and Laura Rogers (drums/backing vocals) moved to New York to advance their music careers. Like so many before them, Brooklyn residents Jennifer and Laura worked in bars and restaurants to make ends meet. Unlike most everyone else they started their own bar call Daddy's, named after Junior Justice's whiney line in a "Smokey And The Bandit" movie. You might wonder about a group that has uses a Burt Reynolds flick as a touchstone but in the cultural stew that is New York, the Rogers Sisters (the group) drew inspiration from an eclectic collection of sources.
Jennifer put the band together the day before their first gig - a birthday bash at another watering hole. Needing a bass player the Jennifer and Laura added a non-sister, Miyuki Furtado, who was born in Japan. Furtado's father worked for the State Department which meant a lot of traveling before he too settled in Brooklyn.
As for that birthday show and the others that soon followed, Jennifer says, "It was reckless and by the skin of our teeth. We still have that energy, but nowadays we try to play the right notes."
The Rogers Sister's first recorded effort, the mini-album "Three Fingers," was followed by their '02 full-length debut "Purely Evil." '06 saw the arrival of "Invisible Deck" on the Too Pure imprint.
On CD sales sites there are those "helpful" notations that say "People who have bought this CD have also bought..." The Rogers Sisters are matched with early Jefferson Airplane, later Flaming Lips and the Stills. There is a connection between those groups and the Rogers Sisters but the most obvious one is missing.
Imagine B-52 songs being played by a power pop band. That's what the Rogers Sisters sound like on their full length debut "Purely Evil." For their next effort, "Invisible Deck, the B-52s influence is still intact but they also incorporate shades of pre-Zeppelin Hard Rock ("Why Won't You") and Go-Go's '80s pop ("Never Learn To Cry"). But "Purely Evil" is the better of the two. The vocal interplay (everybody sings/shouts) is more inventive and spontaneous. Furtado's vocal inflections, Fred Schneider-style, are far less affected.
"Invisible Deck" is still a lot of fun with guitar eruptions riding roughshod over an enticing rhythmic energy. The album has twists and turns, like the guitar break in "The Light," but it doesn't miss a beat.
"Three Fingers" shows the beginnings of what would appear later, full blown, on "Purely Evil."