The Bad Tenants-Stay Classy
The Bad Tenants have been staples in the Bellingham hip-hop scene for about two and a half years. Known for their infectious tracks and energetic performances, the trio has been changing it up and will be releasing a new EP.
Formerly a foursome, The Bad Tenants are now a three-man group including members Casey Gainor, Matthew Goodwin and Gabriel Ghirardini. Onstage they become Casey G, Good Matters and DJ Idlhnds. The departure of Dutch as a member of the crew is definitely unfortunate but there are no bad vibes within the group. In fact, he and Matt are currently roommates in Seattle. Gainor, Goodwin and Ghirardini are a very impressive group of men who just happen to love making, contributing and listening to music. Gainor is a WWU journalism grad and Ghirardini just graduated Western last spring with a ridiculously cool major “experiential musicology.” Goodwin attended Loyola Marymount in California. Also holding down other jobs, music remains The Bad Tenants’ first love. And now, that love is getting some extra T-L-C.
A process that began six months ago, The Bad Tenants are changing their sound as they make their official move from Bellingham to Seattle. This move has been one of The Bad Tenants’ goals for quite sometime. “The wealth of opportunities for the hip hop community in Seattle seems like a logical step,” remarked Goodwin. Although they are moving to Seattle, Bellingham is still going to be a part of The Bad Tenants. Ghirardini was born in the ‘ham, Gainor and Goodwin since they were young lads. Not to mention The Sunday Cypher has been a powerful musical presence throughout The Bad Tenants’ career. Many Bellingham friends are featured on their upcoming album as well as being cited as influences for the band. From My Dad Bruce to IG88, the community is close-knit, and The Cypher also has a Seattle branch that contains Bellingham friends.
This change marks a shift in the entire group dynamic. The evolution is all reflected on their album, Eloquent Scoundrels Vol. 1 which will be released on Oct. 9. Some tracks on the album feature all four original members and other tracks have the current three. The perfect transition album, it is meant to guide listeners through the journey that The Bad Tenants have been on, displaying both a cohesive sound and individual talent. Gainor is an enthusiastic MC that constantly engages with the audience, and Goodwin is a charming crooner and rapper, while Ghirardini is of the rare breed of DJs who actually spins on vinyl.
While Gainor and Goodwin have more interaction during sets, Ghirardini typically spends most of his time behind the decks. By bringing turntables to shows, he aims to bring energy and the traditional DJ perspective to the experience.
A notable change in The Bad Tenants sound, there is a dominant jazz influence throughout the album. In various opening tracks, Gainor and Goodwin are the musicians behind the instrumentals. Gainor plays jazz trombone while Goodwin plays alto sax and blues guitar (an influence sparked in a way by the Last Band Standing series, in which The Bad Tenants made it to the finals). This sound consequently sets The Bad Tenants apart from the standard rapper with a laptop.
Goodwin explained that “fans should expect a completely different sound that much more polished and improvement for the group as a whole.”
As Gainor simply put, “we pour our heart and soul into this everyday.”
The album release is just around the corner as well as a West Coast tour in November that starts at The Shakedown on Nov. 3. For their tour, The Bad Tenants are taking the Make.Shift Magic Van, with Triceracorn and Chance Random also performing on the tour. When released, the album will be available for free, and the “Stay Classy” single has already been making rounds in the community. Also featured on the album are contributions from Jesus Chris Willis, Ashley Hoppes and beats from Thaddeus.
For more information about the Bad Tenants, including future shows and their new EP, visit facebook.com/TheBadTenants.