Two bands showed up at the Myriad Gardens Water Stage just before 1 p.m. on Wednesday, both ready to play on the second day of Festival of the Arts. Normally, there would only be room for one band per hour on the Water Stage, but The Kamals and the Younglings worked through a scheduling mishap and found a way to make everything come together.
They both played. As Kamals guitarist Brad Nance joked from the stage, they became “The Kamallings.”
Fortunately for both bands, the Kamals and the Younglings are familiar with each other's work. They most recently performed together on April 19 as part of a triple-bill at Opolis in Norman, both bands play a hard combination of blues, rock and R&B and as a bonus, they knew one another's songs.
“It was a great thing that it happened to be the Kamals,” said singer-drummer Baylor Judd of the Younglings. “We're all good buddies, we all know each other and we've got a similar-enough style where it was able to just kind of blend together.”
The Younglings, featuring Judd and guitarist Bruce Gray, and the five-piece Kamals (Nance, singer-guitarist Zak Kaczka, bassist Trey Allen, keyboardist Loren Williams and drummer River Myers) started off by playing musical tag, with each band taking the stage for two songs and passing it off to the other. But the groups soon blended together, with nearly all the members crowding onto the circular Water Stage to play songs from both The Kamals' 2012 EP and the Younglings' debut album, “Bad at Being Good.” In addition, they performed a cover of the Black Sabbath classic, “Fairies Wear Boots.”
“We've kind of talked about doing something like this,” Judd said. “But it kind of just came to fruition right now. But yeah, if this was any other band, it probably wouldn't have been able to work, but because it was them, it fell into place.”
For those who missed “The Kamallings,” Judd said there will be other opportunities to experience the chemistry between the two bands.
“We've actually got a gig May 3 at Route 66 Roadhouse — The Younglings, The Kamals and The Trading Co.,” Judd said. “We all just wanted to play some shows together so we booked a few in the row.”