Monday, September 26, 2011

The Story of Dueling Pianos, A band, Great Voices and all the people who get it.

By Doug Ruffin
Boston Music Coalition

I was invited to attend a special one year anniversary party for, Howl at the moon,
184 High Street
in the heart of Boston’s financial district. I have been to piano bars around town before. Some are better than others. You take one piano, a singer, a bar, a few regulars and well … you know the scene. 

Enter, Howl At The Moon. Described as a, “…Destination for the worlds greatest rock n Roll dueling piano show”. That description is an understatement. Rather than a piano player singing against the tide of chatter and a few regulars assembled around the piano; the energy from the crowd is amplified by two dueling piano players who have a great sense of humor and can sing (or rather, can sang!) like no tomorrow. But if you are looking only for a lounge singer performing familiar piano songs whose intro catches all of our attention on the radio in the way a Journey or Billy Joel song can often do, you are truly mistaken. The piano playing is continuous and the music range includes pop, dance, classic rock, country and a few fun hip hop songs most everybody knows. They are backed up by a talented small band that joins the stage if the requested song calls for it. Since the show is request driven, the audience gets to interact with the piano players by handing them small prepared note sheets available at your table, on the bar and right on top of the pianos. It was my first time at “the Howl” and I was not just drawn in by the music and the friendly team of waiters; I was also welcomed by the attending crowd. No one bothers you, but you will get a smile or a friendly hello when you are singing along with the music. They have terrific drinks. At the Boston Location, they offer a reasonably priced food menu.

Chris the manager at Howl At the Moon noted the great success they had during the first year in Boston. The company launched during 1990 in Kentucky and can be found in 11 cities. The newest location, Minneapolis, will open later this year on December 1rst. I noticed that the piano players changed every so often during the night. Chris proudly introduced me to the musicians at Sunday nights’ one year anniversary party. Including Matt, Roger, Jill, Devina and Jonno. Energetic musicians looking for work can visit for employment opportunities.

Howl has teamed up with Berklee College of Music for a special night of student performances. The event will take place on October 25th. Students who perform at this general public event could land a job at the howl. To register, e mail: .

The latest news about the boston location is a new dance club, "Down" just below Howl At the Moon. Boston DJs with world wide reach often spin there including DJ Costa and Joe Bermudez. In other news, people can sign up to win a party at Howl at the moon. Visit to find out how you can win!

Better yet, go there and have your self a howl of a time.

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