The Coffis Brothers headed to Sisters
Last updated 7/21/2021 at Noon
The Coffis Brothers will bring roots rock to the Sisters Summer of Festival concert series on Saturday, July 31.
Jamie and Kellen Coffis were born and raised in the mountains of Santa Cruz, California. They took their musical inspiration from bands they listened to when they were young. According to their website bio, “nothing in their repertoire is overwrought or outstays its welcome. This is pure roots rock, focused on melody, harmony, rhythm, and mood. There are echoes of The Byrds, Tom Petty, and The Jayhawks, and from years of touring, they have honed their sound into shimmering, high-energy rock and roll.”
“We like to say rock ’n’ roll, which for us encompasses blues, folk, and country,” said Kellen Coffis. “For us it’s really about melody and groove and then the words come after that.”
Jamie and Kellen began singing music at a young age, singing in a children’s choir with their mom. When Jamie was attending San Francisco State, he began delving into more rock ’n’ roll music, singing and playing with buddies.
“Playing in college really gave Jamie a solid foundation and when he came back from college, we began booking some gigs so we could play together so he could have some accompaniment,” said Kellen.
They got a few close friends together to create a band and have been touring and recording full-time for six years. Their first record came out in 2011.
“We started the band originally with our longtime friend Kyle Poppen, who plays lead guitar in the five-piece band,” said Kellen.
Jamie and Kellen do most of the writing and production of the songs on their records, and are accompanied by friends/bandmates. All songs were written and sung by Jamie (vocals and keys) and Kellen (vocals, guitar), and were performed by Kyle Poppen (lead guitar), Aidan Collins (bass, backing vocals), Sam Kellerman (drums and percussion), and Tim Bluhm (backing vocals, and guitar.)
“The band formed really organically over the years, and we really just love playing music together and going from being rocking and loud to a bit of a slower-paced tune,” said Kellen.
Most of their performance set is composed of original songs, but they do a few covers here and there if they feel like it fits the vibe of the evening. Most of the cover songs they choose to do are within that rock and blues genre.
“We try to shy away from classic rock tunes, but we aren’t shy to play covers if it’s a song that interests us,” said Kellen.
Due to the pandemic, the production of their latest album was put on hold, but they were still able to push new music out virtually in 2020. They released their fourth full-length record in April of 2020, “In the Cuts.”
“We did a Zoom album release party and just chatted with the band and producers. It wasn’t what we were planning, because it feels like it was missing something being in the hands of a live audience, but in the last few months, we’ve felt it’s been more out there more with being able to get it in people’s hands as we start to gig more,” said Kellen.
The album consists of 12 songs that they produced and learned over the course of 6 months.
The band worked with producer and member of The Mother Hips (the co-bill for the summer concert performance), Tim Bluhm. The Coffis Brothers had opened for The Mother Hips a few times and built up a relationship with Bluhm.
“We all really looked up to Tim and we worked up the courage to ask him to be the producer on this album and he said yes. We booked a studio in Oakland and recorded In the Cuts,” Kellen said. “We were really lucky that the timing worked out with him, and we hope to work with him on another album in the future.”
Jamie and Kellen did most of the writing and creation of the songs off the record at the start, they then took them to the rest of the band to let everyone take their own creative spin with it. “Sometimes the songs change a lot, and other times, they stay pretty similar to how they began,” Kellen said.
The Coffis Brothers have never performed in Sisters but have played a few times in Bend.
“We are really excited to finally get to play in Sisters,” said Kellen Coffis.
The Coffis Brothers and The Mother Hips will be performing on a co-bill on Saturday, July 31, at 7 p.m., outdoors at the Sisters Artworks Building, 204 W. Adams Ave.
Other musicians on the bill for summer concerts include David Jacobs-Strain/Tony Furtado Trio, Sway Wild/ True North, Making Movies/ Raye Zaragoza.
For more information and tickets visit https://sistersfolkfestival.org/sff-presents/.