Pop folk group Oliver Hazard has an unconventional success story. With only a couple dozen performances this band has accumulated millions of streams on Spotify for their debut LP 34 N. River. The band recently performed at Bonnaroo 2018 and is continuing to ride their success with a tour across the state of Ohio.
Oliver Hazard is a folk trio from Waterville, OH made up of Mike Belazis, Devin East, and Griffin McCulloch. The group are old high school friends that reunited and started making music together. Belazis lives in San Francisco part time, but the group has not let that stop them from pushing forward. It is not unusual for them to jam or write songs over the phone. Oliver Hazard had a stroke of luck when they applied to Toledo local Bigfoot Studios’ recording giveaway. Bands from the area were encouraged to enter into a raffle of two free song recordings. Oliver Hazard won the raffle but had an idea that they ran by Bigfoot Studios owner Travis Geiman. Instead of tracking and recording two songs which could take days the band proposed a full album live recording that could be done start to finish in less than twelve hours. Geiman agreed and 34 N. River is the result. According to Travis the recordings were done in two sessions of a few hours each and one day of mixing – relatively little time and work for a full album of such quality.
34 N. River can be found on just about any streaming platform. Fans of Mumford & Sons and The Lumineers will find solace with the band’s memorable lyrics and catchy melodies. The fan favorite song is their single “Ceasar Knows”, but my personal favorite is “Henry & Pearl”. Oliver Hazard’s music is appealing to a wide audience of people which I’m sure is something contributing to their success. It is music that I can listen to with my whole family. There is something there for everyone. Their sound is made up of outstanding vocal harmonies over top of guitar, a suitcase bass drum, and the occasional tambourine. All of their songs seem real and relatable and I definitely recommend giving them a listen. Rumor has it they are in the works of a second LP. Follow their Spotify to stay updated with their releases.
Oliver Hazrd’s tour is about halfway over but you can still catch them at a handful of dates. Tonight they perform in Toledo at Promenade Park. For Cleveland locals they play at the Beachland Ballroom August 23rd with Mt Joy. I just bought my tickets for their Cleveland show – stop by and say hi!