Heavy Harold, The Black Moons

Heavy Harold

Will Butera was born in a small coal mining town in eastern Pennsylvania. His mother was a seamstress at a local silk factory, while his father worked in the mines. Seeing as he was only six inches tall, Mr. Butera couldn't do any of the actual physical labor, but the manager hired him to sing to the workers, believing that it would help to improve their morale. It is said that Will's love of music began by listening to his father's melodious singing. Tragically, in 1978, when Will was just seven years old, Mr. Butera was smooshed by a five pound piece of rock that fell from the roof of the mine. He made a full recovery, but developed a massive coal phobia, and was subsequently fired by the manager.

With seventeen younger siblings to support and a 4 inch father (Mr. Butera had shrunk two inches from the accident) who couldn't find work, Will decided to take a job as a miner. The repeated, steady beat from the "clink! clink!" of his pick axe gave Will his incredible sense of rhythm. Soon, he began using two picks at a time to allow him to use more complicated syncopation, using the massive tools as drumsticks. It was these extreme conditions of his training that gave Will his incredible drumming speed, as well as his notoriously defined biceps.

For three years, Will worked in the mines, scraping together just enough money for his family to get buy. But one day, something happened to Will that changed his life forever. Walking to the grocery store, he saw a street performer playing drums on the side of the road. The eloquence and the beauty of the man's playing awakened the musician that had been waiting to burst from Will's soul. At that very moment, he decided that he would dedicate his life to music. After beating the street performer senseless and stealing his drums, Will set off to hitch hike to Hollywood, so he could live out his dreams of making it in showbiz. (Note: At the time, Will was not entirely aware of the generally accepted meaning of hitchhiking. Rather than standing on the side of the road and sticking out his thumb until a car stopped to pick him up, Will hiked, on foot, to California. For this reason, the journey took him just over three years.)

When he finally made it to California, Will tried to form a band. Sadly, he was turned down by every musician he asked to join. Dejected, Will turned to competing in karaoke competitions at local bars that offered cash prizes. But will had a terrible singing voice, and was frequently shouted at or assaulted on stage. But then one night, a talent agent spotted Will doing karaoke at a bar in Los Angeles. Despite the awful singing, despite the bottles being hurled at Will's face, the agent saw that Will, whatever else he was, was one handsome devil. That very night, he offered him a role in a film, which Will readily accepted. The producers loved him at the tryouts, and Will soon began filming in his first motion picture.

The movie was titled "Will's Big Score!" an adult film revolving around the main character, "Big Willie's," rather eventful night on the town. The movie did fairly well at the box office, and Will sent the money he earned back to his family in Pennsylvania. Since they had gone three years without any income while Will traversed the continental United States, his family had become homeless, and the $72.39 that Will sent them did little to remedy the situation. But it was still a very nice thought. Money wasn't the only thing Will got from "Will's Big Score!" He also found... love.

During the filming, Will became deeply enamored with the leading actress, Harold. After a time, Will grew so obsessed that he could not live without Harold, and one day he decided to propose to her. Coincidentally, that same day, Harold got a job offer from NASA, and she left to orbit the moon for the next seven years. Dismayed, Will wandered the streets of Hollywood for months, shouting at people and stealing complimentary restaurant mints to keep from starving. Devastated, heartbroken, and alone, Will wandered aimlessly, devoid of all hope. Unitl one day, after being thrown out of a bar for using the beer nozzle to take a shower, Will passed by a street performer, playing drums on the side of the road.

He heard the rythmn, the syncopation, the beauty. He let it all wash over him, absorbing the sound like a sponge. And like the mythical pheonix, the music in Will's heart that had lain dormant for all those months was reborn. Will shouted to the heavens that once again, he would dedicate his soul, his life, and his being to music. After beating the street performer senseless and stealing his drums, Will went out, and began to gather the finest musicians in the area.

First, he needed to find a guitarist. The man for the job was Alex Cotsarelis, an ex-officer who was kicked out of the army for refusing to participate in his troop's semi-annual flag football game. Next, they picked up their bass player Steven Wadden, a recovering chocoholic who was searching for redemption. But they were still missing a singer. After a few disastrous gigs with Will on lead vocals, the band's prayers were answered by an angel. That angel's name was Parker Laren, voted "best smile" in his high school yearbook. Combining Harold, the name of Will's lost love with the nickname for the bassist, Heavy Steve (having been a chocoholic for several years, Steve weighed over 400 pounds), they named the band "Heavy Harold."

(Extended Edition) Then, feeling alittle light, Heavy Harold added Matt Brown. Matt, who entered the witness protection program after witnessing a high profile litterer, seeked comfort in playing the guitar. He met Parker at a dental hygine convention and then they became instant friends.The rest, as they say, is history...

The Black Moons

The Black Moons are a 5 piece rock band from Boston, MA. Founded by Philly natives Jake Ohlbaum and Will Butera, The Black Moons spent the bulk of 2013 rehearsing and perfecting songs for their first few performances and recording sessions. A band tightly based around crafty songwriting, they explore many different genres of rock, from funk and blues, to folk and acoustic rock. The Black Moons' first album was recorded in the fall of 2013; Half-Hearted and Climbing is scheduled for release in the spring of 2014

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Heavy Harold, The Black Moons

Saturday, December 28 · 8:00 PM at Melodies Cafe