Tune in Thursday January 17, 2013 @ 10pm to the new episode of MTV’s BUCKWILD and listen for our song “True to Me.”
Steel Petals is a band based out of Charleston, S.C. that is known for their multiple interpretations of blues based rock and roll. Steel Petals incorporates modern rock, acid blues, and roots rock into a rich blend of dynamic southern swagger. When describing Steel Petals music, Mathew Godbey of the Post and Courier says, ”There is a darkness, a certain swampy sinfulness …creating a colorful collage of regionally defining genres.”
Steel Petals recently released their first new material in two and half years on October 12th, 2012. The new album, Ligero (pronounced Le-hair-oh) shows the undeniable depth of the band’s blues based attack. From the slinky groove of “Bonhomme Richard” to the gnashing teeth of “Black Diamond” and the gospel exalt of “Glory of One” Steel Petals display their adeptness at embracing blues based rock in all its forms.
Lead singer and guitarist Blake Ohlson, Charleston’s only Orthopedic Surgeon by day and rocker by night, is once again at the helm as The Petals drop a new cargo of material on the port city. Manning the engine of the Steel Petals machine for the past year and half and propelling the band to new groove and dynamic heights are bassist Jeff Narkiewicz and drummer Shank Wilson.
Steel Petals first began to make a name for themselves in 2009 after the group won the Trident United Way’s Battle of the Bands competition in 2009. Steel Petals keyboardist at the time, Whitt Algar (Crowfield, The Bushels) recommended Wilson to Ohlson in 2010 after their involvement in the cover band Simple Possession.
After a few months in the band and another win at the 2010 Battle of the Bands, Ohlson and Wilson decided to add Wilson’s longtime rhythm section partner, Jeff Narkiewicz, to complete the current lineup. With the cohesive unit in place, the band began to work on material for Ligero and began upping their live profile in Charleston.
Ligero was recorded at Ohlson’s Straight Chile Studio on Daniel Island, S.C. between January-July 2012. It was mixed by Ohlson and Mitch Webb at Mantis Records in North Charleston, S.C. and was mastered by Brian Lucey (Black Keys, O.A.R) at Magic Garden Mastering in Columbus, OH. The final track, “Glory of One” features Jerry DePizzo of OAR, along with their touring horn section, Tripledip. The CD release party was held at Awendaw Green on October 12th, 2012.
With a new album in hand, Steel Petals is returning to the stage after a hiatus during recording. Content to be a secret Charleston treasure over the past couple years, Steel Petals will bring their live show to other towns for the first time starting this December. This is a band that is getting better and growing on a monthly basis. And because of that, what was once a secret treasure to a few is now becoming an acknowledged pleasure to many more.
Steel Petals began in 2003 by guitarist, singer/songwriter Blake Ohlson, who is originally from Cleveland, OH. He first began playing guitar at age 13. Bitten by the “blues bug” during college, he spent countless hours learning the riffs of greats such as Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Eric Clapton and Duane Allman. He soon began writing songs and catchy riffs that would later become the foundation of the Steel Petals sound. Ohlson states, “I can play a little bit of everything, be it piano, drums or whatever. I love the guitar and can hold my own pretty well. But it took me a few years to figure out that good guitar players are a dime a dozen whereas good songwriters are not. I love a good guitar lead like the next guy but write a killer song and you can shake up the world.”
Always drawn by the “Sound of the South”, Ohlson moved with his wife and family to Charleston, S.C. in 2007 where he began practicing as an orthopaedic surgeon. Steel Petals was soon summoned to life as a new lineup began to take shape. The current lineup consists of Shank Wilson on drums and Jeff Narkiewicz on bass. Introduced with a fresh lineup of seasoned musicians, Ohlson points out that “the sound you hear today by the band is really what I had floating around in my head for the past ten years. It just took eight of the ten to figure out who and how to do it.”
Hailing from the concrete suburbs of New Jersey, Jeff wrapped up his studies at WVU, then promptly jumped in the van and began touring throughout the South and East. It was after playing shows at Cumberlands and the Windjammer in the late 90′s that he decided the sand and sun of the Lowcountry was preferable to the gloomy skies of the Mountain State.