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Pete Siers Duo w/ Mr. B: Genius Is Knowing When To Bypass Perfection

Joybox Express
Marilyn Gouin
89.1 WEMU
Mr. B & Pete Siers join Linda in the studio to discuss their new album, Flea Circus

Earlier this week, drummer Pete Siers and boogie-woogie piano hero Mr. B joined Linda in the WEMU studios to talk about Pete's new record, Flea Circus ahead of their CD release concert Saturday at The Ark, their special friendship and life in general. 

Getting Started

Years ago, Mr. B and Pete became friends when the two recorded Hallelujah Train with The Bird Of Paradise Orchestra.  Pete played drums on that legendary session.  Their friendship blossomed when the two discovered that they shared a love of physical exercise and taking risks.  The friendship deepened when Pete joined the original Joybox Express band and project.  


 Along with Mr B,  guitarist Brian Delaney and bassist Carl Hildebrandt, Pete pedaled the piano bike on it's first major trip - across Michigan.  Although Pete did not join Mr. B for the long Joybox Express trip down the entire length of The Mississippi river, he did join for segments and emotionally supported Mr. B's amazing, arduous endeavor.  When Mr. B returned from the journey, the stars aligned and Pete was able to record the drums-piano duo recording he'd wanted to make for years. 

The Process

 As with every recording Mr. B has made, many of the songs are just plain fun, but many of the pieces on Flea Circusreflect new wisdom, perspective and a deeper understanding of the blues after Mr. B completed the Joybox Express trek down the Mississppi.  The two reflected on taking risks, the importance of relationships, learning new tricks and and learning valuable life lessons from both successes and failures explaining, "Genius is knowing when to bypass perfection."

"He went on to talk about how he tries not to edit himself too much," wrote Jessica Webster in a Facebook post. "He just acts on ideas when he has them so he doesn't get an idea backlog.  Mr. B explained that he's learned not to be too hard on himself, or to ever expect to work something out to perfection before trying it out. "

Thanksgiving Show at the Ark

On Saturday, November 28th the two will celebrate the new CD and their friendship at The Ark in Ann Arbor.  For nearly 20 years, Mr. B has presented an annual concert at The Ark on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. This Saturday, he opens it up to include his dear friend, drummer Pete Siers.   We hope you  will include this very special evening in your holiday weekend plans to celebrate The Pete Siers Duo featuring Mr. B and the exceptional CD, Flea Circus at The Ark.  

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— Linda Yohn is the WEMU Music Director, and host of 89.1 Jazz. Contact WEMU Music at734.487.3363 or email her at lyohn@emich.edu


Linda Yohn simply cannot remember a day in her life that was not filled with music. Her early life was full of changes as the daughter of a well-respected cancer research scientist who moved his family about, but one thing was constant: the love of music instilled by her mother. So, when it seemed life was too hard to bear, young Linda would listen to her radio, play her guitar, dance her heart out and sing at the top of her lungs. So, it isn’t so strange that “older” Linda still does all those things!
Jessica has been a record store clerk, a Denny’s waitress, a newspaper reporter, a science writer, a mom, a higher education communicator, a radio host and (and one time) one of the most powerful people in the jazz industry.