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LOCAL STRANGER

Kansas City, MO

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The delivery of our performance is what sets us apart. The songs are energetic, they are the kind of songs that make people want to raise their fists in the air and shout out the lyrics. Our influences are the legends of rock.

Local Stranger was formed by James Hammontree in the mid 90's. Art Kirkendoll, virtuoso lead guitar player, and James have been friends for years. They wanted to build a music project that had a chance for lasting success. Rob Slahck, a classically trained bass player, joined Local Stranger in 2003, and with a singer/drummer the three piece band enjoyed some marginal success for over a year. They had to let the original drummer go due to personal issues. In December 2004, Ron Voll was asked to join the band as a drummer. Rick Gillis entered the studio about 2 weeks later, and he completely blew the room away with his voice. Rick's presence all but guaranteed Local Stranger's future success.

With the newly revamped line-up, the magic began to flow. Local Stranger was quickly given the opportunity to play in a few of the larger clubs, and struck gold with an appearance in Club Wars VI. As round one began, only five originals had been written; the show at The Grand Emporium was Local Stranger's second gig. They played well enough to secure a spot in the next round. A blistering Semi-Finals performance netted a slot in the finals at The Beaumont in June, 2005. While Local Stranger came in 3rd, they won the praise of the General Manager of The Beaumont, which turned out to be every bit as good as winning Club Wars outright.

July 2005, after only 7 months together, the four musicians entered the studio to produce their debut CD ‘In The Shadows'. The studio crew raved at Local Stranger's talent and professionalism. Recording was done over a mere three week period. The final mix was completed early October and the CD was released on October 26.

In August, 2006 Local Stranger introduced Joe Bergen as their new bass player. He has been a very positive addition, bringing years of experience and professionalism to the band. Drummer, David Park joined their band in February 2007.

We are one of twenty bands that have been selected from Canada, the USA and Mexico to perform in Las Vegas, NV for the Live Indie Rock Wars produced by Black Mountain Productions. This event will be broadcast April 25 - 27, 2008. Local Stranger is proud to announce that they finished the finals in the top 10.

October 21, 2008 Local Stranger vocalist, Rick Gillis was presented with Banzai Magazine's Outstanding Vocalist Award.

Now with our original line up in place we will be working our way back to the studio to work on our second CD.
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