GTPulse: Traverse City Local Band Records First Songs For EP

I first heard the soulful sounds of Jack Pine while at the inaugural Central Neighborhood Porch Fest in Traverse City. The band was only playing with two members, and the woman next to me leaned over and whispered, “they’re just so good, aren’t they?” They were. I made a mental note to circle back to that particular porch to get the band’s contact information but when I went back after wandering around, they were gone. Needless to say bumping into guitarist and singer Miles Prenergast later that day felt serendipitous and he invited me to come see them at Empire’s Hops and Harvest Festival that went on this past Saturday.

Jack Pine has been playing together for four years. The members of the band have all been the same since the start, with the exception of the drummer. The initial drummer that they had started with left the band a couple of years in.

“It actually worked out pretty seamlessly,” Miles said. “We truthfully wanted to push the band more, and he wanted a career. We met Ryan and it all worked out great.”

Ryan McGee took over as drummer and the band has remained the same ensemble since. Guitarist Andrew Thomas and bassist John Ransom knew each other from playing in a band together in high school, and Miles became familiar with the two because he has a knack for being able to establish familiarity with almost anyone.

“I may or may not have floated around in the hospitality industry,” Miles laughed. “The guys playfully harass me about how I meet people. In a facility I’ve not entered before I’ll walk in and start shaking hands, ‘hi I’m Miles, hi I’m Miles.’ I have a lot of venue connections.”

The venue connections come in handy. Jack Pine’s first gig was at Little Fleet and they were well received by an attentive audience. The band didn’t have too many pre-show jitters because they’ve all played in previous bands before. Their collective experience in other bands has made for a stronger band and a cohesive collaboration process. Each member has brought experience, skill and songwriting from previous band experience.

“I think it varies from song to song,” John Ransom said. “Some songs are are maybe more finished, other times we’ll be playing something and say ‘what’s that? I like that’ and just jam to it.”

Every member of the band writes music and lyrics. The music is beachy mixed with rock and is very easy to listen to, drawing influence from bands like Alabama Shakes, The Black Keys among others.  I have a playlist that I put on when I’m driving on Old Mission and Jack Pine belongs on it. Water and skyline passing by, no hard edges, easy.

“I think if you listen to each of us, we all kind of have our own roots. Collectively as a band I would say that we’re an easy listening rock band,” Miles said.

However, Jack Pine is largely only available to listen to live.

The band has 22 original songs that they want to record so people can listen to them anytime. 

“We want to be able to be listened to on a high recorded level, we want to be on Spotify. We need an album or an EP,” Miles said.

Two of their songs have been recorded and the band plans on recording more.

Northern Michigan has a wealth of musical talent and the band are grateful to be apart of the community.

“Having good musicians around you makes you better and and it’s also very humbling,” Miles said.

Not only do the guys enjoy the creative and performative side of the band, they get a lot out of the relationships they have with each other as bandmates and as friends.

“It’s very laid back and we all get along super well” Andrew said.

“I don’t want to seem cliche but it really is like a brotherhood,” Miles added.

If you find yourself looking for some new music to listen to, check out Jack Pine’s Facebook page and stay up to date on their upcoming performances.

Categories: GTPulse