Listen to the Hitmen and you might be struck by the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley band’s ability to long jump musical genres.Lead singer Dusty Katzenberger channels music legends like a psychic medium with his vocal prowess — from the howling lows of Jim Morrison to the smooth burn of Frank Sinatra.
The other members of the band, guitarist and vocalist Luke Nuxoll, drummer Curt Boyer Jr., and Stefan Jarocki on bass, synthesizer and vocals, complete the musical seance. The band will play from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, June 3, at Brackenbury Square at the first concert in Beautiful Downtown Lewiston’s Sound Downtown summer series. The event will include a beer and wine garden hosted by Brava’s.
They chose the name the Hitmen because they only play the hits, said Nuxoll, of Lewiston.
“We like to take a song everybody’s heard and add our sound to it. … We really make it our own.”
They came together with widely varied musical influences, Nuxoll said. “They’re impossible to pin down, but I will say this, I think all of us have that rebel streak and so we’re drawn to music that is very much gut-soul as compared to really following the genre.”
By “gut-soul” he means more Johnny Cash and less Elvis Presley, he said.
“We’re very interested in the presentation of the note as compared to what context it’s in.”
After three years together the Hitmen are starting to write original music, he said. Their focus now is turning their music into a day job by playing the hits at private parties, casinos, fairs and festivals to give them the freedom to create something new in their free time.