By Manette Newbold
Cache Magaine editor
Jennifer Meyers / Herald Journal
Olsen, Steve Roberts and Irv Nelson grew up listening to
The Beatles, The Eagles, Bob Dylan, and Creedence
Clearwater Revival. The nostalgia of the music takes
them back in time as they practice on their guitars
together at Roberts' home in River Heights.
"I remember I was walking
downtown in California, walking across the street. I
would have been 13, and I heard 'I Want to Hold Your
Hand.' It was the first time... and my friend and I
went, 'Wow,'" Roberts says, as Nelson laughs and agrees.
"We grew up in a fun time, really,"
adds Nelson, of Smithfield. "Much different from the
YouTube and iTunes time. There was a new Top 40 every
week and that's what the radio station played. And there
was really only one decent radio station in most towns
and you just listened to these songs over and over and
over and took you guitar out and played them."
Olsen, Roberts and Nelson make
up the acoustic band Relic, a cover band playing classic
songs generations past and present have come to adore.
The band came together about two years ago after they'd
been playing for at least half a dozen years in The
Fender Benders, another classic rock band with a much
bigger sound. The Fender Benders have been seen at
events all over the valley since 2003, from their
beginning Firehouse Pizza days to demolition derbies,
Smithfield Health Days, Summerfest, the North Logan 24th
of July concert, and The Howl and Homecoming Dances at
USU. That band is made up of five members (including Jim
Eliason and Carl Hart) and requires a huge sound system.
After a while Olsen, Roberts and Nelson decided they
could play acoustic shows on a much smaller scale
without a lot of set-up. With Relic, they just pack up
their guitars and perhaps a small PA system and they're
good to go.
Another reason they formed Relic was
because the economy the last few years severely hurt The
Fender Benders' gigs. Big events didn't have money to
pay musicians and a lot of their annual shows dried up.
With Relic, the trio can perform at Pier 49 Pizza (which
is owned by Nelson), and Willow Valley Golf Course
(which Roberts' wife owns), and
and anywhere else they're invited, at a much lower cost.
Each musician has a pretty extensive
background in music and combined they have more than 100
years of performing experience. Olsen, of Garland,
remembers the moment he decided he wanted a guitar. He
was on a choir trip with students from Sky View High
School and his friend brought his new 12-string guitar
and three or four of them sat in the back of the bus and
sang Bee Gees songs. "Every female was eyeing us, and I
thought, 'I can do this,'" Olsen says, laughing. "It's
all about the girls."
When the members of Relic play
together, their voices blend together in distinct
harmonies as they each strum individual parts on guitar.
At times Roberts taps beats on the side of his guitar
resembling drums. Their sound is mellow, but they
definitely have their share of fun. During practice
Nelson starts playing chords to a well-known, upbeat
song, the Olsen joins in, changing the song to something
else. They say this often goes in circles, the three of
them playing the same chords, but singing several
different songs with each combination.
Relic is out to have a good time,
entertain, and keep the oldies alive; however, those who
want to hear them will have to come to a show because
the band doesn't have plans to record. "What's the point
of a cover band recording?" Nelson says. "If you like
the song, buy the original!"
To listen to Relic, visit
relicacousticband.com or come to their next performance
Saturday from 6 to 8pm at Pier 49 Pizza in Providence.
Jennifer Meyers / Herald Journal