Arts and Entertainment

Ready to rock again; Payday Daddy comes out of retirement with a concert May 7

When the rock band Payday Daddy retired in 2003, they thought their days of playing in smoky bars were over.

They were half right.

The state banned smoking in public places in 2005.

And on Saturday, Payday Daddy comes out of retirement.

Band member Lesa McCabe said the band reunited in January.

“We have learned and relearned about 60 songs,” McCabe said. “The words! Oh the words! I’m trying to cram all the words into my 50 year old brain.”

The band’s musical style ranges from the Everly Brothers to Lady Gaga. Their goal is to get people on the dance floor.

McCabe has spent the majority of her retirement period not feeling well. She had major surgery in 2005, followed by many years of complications.

During that time, her interest in music waned. She remembers hearing music on the radio and not giving it much thought. But once she began to feel better, her ears did too.

“I started hearing songs and thinking ‘Hey! That would be fun to play.’” Her interest in music gauged how she felt.

Feeling back to her old self, McCabe brought the band back together. The band consists of McCabe on bass, Richard Arriola on lead guitar, Michael Craig on drums and Kent McCabe (Lesa’s husband of 18 years) on rhythm guitar.

McCabe said playing with the band has been very healing. It gives her something to look forward to and gets her up and out of the house.

The reunion concert is set for Saturday night at McClouds in Bremerton. And while McClouds might have a country-vibe, McCabe said Payday Daddy will rock the venue and have cowboys line dancing to Jimi Hendrix.

Originally the band was known as “Life of Riley” but unbeknownst to them, there was another band with the same name. Instead of playing classic rock and roll, the other “Life of Riley” played punk.

McCabe laughs as she recalls the confusion. “We were playing this one place and people came in with Mohawks and piercings, saying they were there to see ‘Life of Riley.’ And we weren’t the ones they were looking for. We changed our name very quickly.”

The name Payday Daddy is from a 1920s song by Elzadie Robinson and, as a tribute the band plays a modern version of the song. The band likes the name because it is so unique; no more name confusion.

McCabe said they also go by the nickname of “the band of love.” Over the years, eight couples have met at their concerts and have gone on to marry.

“Come to one of our gigs, and you may find your mister or misses right,” she said.

As for the reunion concert, McCabe said she feels a mixture of excitement and nerves.

“We are a little bit more gray, a little more creaky,” McCabe said. “I’m wearing trifocals now, but we can still play some rock and roll.”

Payday Daddy Reunion Concert: May 7, 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., at McCloud’s, at 2901 Perry Ave. in Bremerton.



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