Jean Catino and her neighbor Linda Baker like to sing together. They met in the local ukulele scene, along with June Coha, who they also liked to sing with. The three women enjoyed singing together so much that they played a gig as a trio last May in Davenport as the Backyard Birds.
It went so well that they quickly added Larry Prather and Linc Russin, and began playing more shows.
“I don’t think there was a big plan behind it. Every little development that happened day by day was like, ‘whoa, this is great,’” Catino says. “I’ve been around long enough to know that things don’t necessarily last forever. I’m grateful for every new opportunity that we get. I don’t think there was ever a long-range plan. But it’s evolved really nicely.”
The group currently plays strictly covers, and does them in acoustic renditions accented by the gorgeous, multi-layered harmonies from the women. In terms of choosing songs, they look for obscure gems like “Going Back to Harlan” by Anna McGarrigle, “Emmylou” by First Aid Kit and “Reflecting Light” by Stan Phillips.
“It was really about finding great songs that worked with our voices. The theory behind choosing songs is to try to find things that are not obvious—not necessarily well-known, but great songs,” Catino says. “It’s more trying to give exposure to some of these great songs maybe people haven’t heard, or haven’t heard lately.”
INFO: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, October 10. Michael’s on Main, 2591 S Main St., Soquel. $10. 479-9777.