Looking for the limelight

Tuesday, February 3, 2004

Almost everyone has heard of bands like the Def Tones, Led Zeppelin and the Used. They are all nationally known bands whose sound most people can recognize, at least in passing. But what about bands like Surrender Dorothy and Frogsweat? These are two bands in Cape Girardeau that are just trying to get a little exposure.

Both have played recently at the Camp Family Restaurant and have plans for other performances and even an album.

Frogsweat is a band of five guys who represent the area's high schools and university. Members are John Keusenkothen, a senior at Notre Dame; Jay Seabaugh, a student at Southeast Missouri State University; Danny Seabaugh, the 17-year-old lead singer; Scott Elsey, a senior at Notre Dame; and Chase Wright, a senior at Cape Central.

Although the band notes several influences such as AFI and Bon Jovi, member Danny Seabaugh says, "We just want to be ourselves -- as original as possible."

And they're trying to do that by singing their own songs. Chase Wright says that the feeling of going onstage is, "exciting. …It's a huge adrenaline rush."

The band has performed several times, including at the Camp Family Restaurant recently. They have gigs scheduled Thursdy and Friday at Players Club.

The group practices on Wednesdays and Sundays on the second floor of a building owned by the Seabaughs' parents.

Considering that the band is made up entirely of students, there are some advantages. Flexibility for practices is one, but Chase Wright says the best part is that "I get to play music. I love music."

Being in Frogsweat is different than any other band these teens have performed with. "There's more dedication," said Scott Elsey.

Added Jay Seabaugh, "It's all my best friends."

Another local band has together only since the beginning of the school year, but are a promising group of musicians. The members of Surrender Dorothy are Christian Ribiat, a freshman at Central High School; Hunter Hartline, a junior at Scott City High School; Cody Pullam, a junior at Cape Central; and Zach Pullam, a senior at Central.

The name of the band is quite unusual, its members admit. When the band was trying to decide on a name, Ribiat's father recommended "Surrender Dorothy," as a take off the Wicked Witch of the West's ultimatum to Dorothy in the "Wizard of Oz."

The group liked the name and took about five months to practice and write songs before going public with a performance.

Christian Ribiati says he gets along with these band members better than any others he's previously played with.

And the group plays together better collectively than as individuals, said Pullam, the lead singer.

Surrender Dorothy's first peformance was at the Camp Family Restaurant in late January.

The band has written several songs , including "Memory," "Words that Lie" and their most popular original song, "From Nothing to Zero."

The group intends to record its first album in March.

Emily Hendricks is a junior at Central High School. Contact her at ehendricks @semissourian.com.

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