Grifters & Shills - Amplifyin' and Testifyin' for Your Soul
His was hard rock and heavy metal. Hers was the classic sound of the East Texas piney woods. Theirs was a fiery collision, bearing forth a sound that was at once novel and instantly familiar--high lonesome harmonies with a rock and roll soul.
Behind Grifters & Shills is John and Rebecca Stoll, native Texans who met in a classic rock/blues jam band in 2008. Between them they discovered a magnetic chemistry that manifested not only in music, but in all aspects of their relationship. When they began playing as a two-piece band, they found a unique voice in the combination of Rebecca's East Texas vocal stylings and John's formidable guitar work. They immediately began writing their own songs, while testing the waters of vocal harmonies and adding an array of instrumentation to their arsenal. A typical show will feature a delightful range of electric instruments, including John's archtop guitar, Rebecca's bass, homemade suitcase drums, a couple of cigar box guitars, a handful of harmonicas, and an occasional kazoo.
They call it high lonesome rock n roll, and together, this two-person, dozen-instrument act provides a show full of sound a fury, punctuated with raw, quiet vulnerability, forging new trails and shining new light on familiar ground.
In 2024, Grifters & Shills releases "Fireball" on DOUBLE-VINYL. The album has all 14 songs from the original release of "Fireball" in the previous, plus three songs only available on vinyl.
In 2023, Grifters & Shills released "Fireball", a fiery collection of songs written in that unique timeframe between 2019 and 2022. Songs range from flat-out four-on-the-floor rockers to an introspective ballad performed on piano. All of the album was recorded in the band's humble home, and mixed/mastered by the band. They were joined by special guests Kim Barker (Brightwire), Michael Helfenstein III (Brightwire), and Willy T Golden.
In 2019, Grifters & Shills released "Pretty Little Secrets", an explosive album that takes a no-holds-barred exploration of the dark and the light, sin and redemption, and a whole host of characters brought to life through 15 original songs. The album was written, recorded, produced, mixed and mastered by Grifters & Shills, with artwork by John Streeter, and a guest appearance by percussionist Nathan Bando. Grifters & Shills was signed to Spectra Music Group for distribution of the album.
Other records by Grifters & Shills:
"Long Tongue Liars" (2018) - 19 blues traditionals laid out in an unapologetic landscape steeped in darkness and vice with a little light and redemption thrown in for good measure.
"Road to Brownwood" (2017) - A collection of traditional and gospel songs reinterpreted through new arrangements, instrumentation and lyrics.
"Watershed" (2014) - Our debut full-length original record. Produced by Brad Sayles (Houston Symphony) and featuring Max Dyer (cello) and Kevin Hardin (fiddle).
"Trainwreck Junkyard" (2013) (EP)
Two additional records were released under their first project, Westbound: "Now & Then" (2012) and "Blackjack Road" (2010).
Grifters & Shills have also been featured on albums from other artists, including Texas favorites Brightwire ("A Place to Call Home" - 2018), Zach Tate ("Serious Man" - 2014; "End of Time" - 2012), and Myrna Sanders ("Big Head Diva" - 2012), as well as various compilation albums ("Texas Music Selections" - 2015; "Quote Your Pulse: Covers Compilation" - 2012; "Oasis Rock and Roots Sampler" - 2010). They have also appeared in Musician’s Friend advertisements in Guitar World, Mix, Electronic Musician and Modern Drummer magazines.