I grew up in Northern California in a town called Castro Valley. This is the town that brought the world late Metallica bassist, Cliff Burton as well as MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow and Pixar producer and Academy Award Nominated Jonas Rivera.
Now, I think it's safe to say, we are nearly ready to add a few more names to that list of famous Castro Valley sons and daughters with the latest release of the Up and Down's album, "Hell of a Time." My friend and former Castro Valley High Class of 1987 classmate William Baptista (wikipedia page pending) plays drums for The Up and Down, and if you like bluegrass punk, the Dropkick Murphys, or any other tunes with a heel-kicking, pub-crawl-meets-hootenanny vibe, might I strongly suggest you check out this album.
If you're still not convinced, take a listen to this live performance of their title song here.
And if, after that, you are still not convinced of how thoroughly enjoyable this album is, take a listen to actual feed back from my teen and pre-teen children.
I played the CD (available here, or here) in the car while driving to church (seemed like a great time) and since the kids couldn't go anywhere for six to eight minutes, I had their undivided attention.
Me - So boys, what do you think of this music?
Jonah (11) - I like it fine. It sounds like stuff on the radio.
Isaac (10) - On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd say it's seven . . . ish. Or eight, probably nine.
Isaac - It sounds like Mexican music.
Jonah - It does not!
Isaac - Yes, it does.
Jonah - You don't even know what Mexican music sounds like.
Ethan (16) - It's fine. Hey you know what would be cool? A zip line from our house to Burger King.
So, there you have it. Irrefutable proof that The Up and Down are on the fast track being the go-to band for quinceaneras catered by Burger King. Jump on this band's wagon now and you can say you loved them before everyone else.
(Seriously, if you want to put yourself in an instantly good mood, check out The Up and Down's "Hell of a Time." Did I mention it's available here and here?)