The Daily Tar Heel

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Wednesday April 14th

Ellis Dyson & the Shambles prepare for spring tour

Ellis Dyson & the Shambles, known throughout the local music scene for their swinging tunes and electric on-stage performances, are taking their talents to untested waters on their spring tour. 

The namesake of the band, Ellis Dyson, is a senior American studies major and self-described bowtie expert from Cary who performs lead vocals, banjo, guitar and kazoo. He is joined by Nathan Huvard on guitar, Jonathan Ng on fiddle, Danny Abrams on saxophone, Matt Hall on trumpet and Adam Maloney on bass fiddle. 


March 24: Richmond, Va.

March 25: New York

March 26: Washington, D.C.

April 9: Charleston, S.C.

April 15: Raleigh, N.C.

April 23: Wilmington, N.C.

April 30: Asheville, N.C.

Learn more here.

This winter, the sextet set out on a tour that took them to venues from Raleigh to Brooklyn. Now, the band is taking on even more new territory in its spring tour, with both local shows and dates in Richmond, New York and Washington, D.C. 

“Overnight success takes a decade at least,” said Dyson. “It’s all about playing shows and getting your name out there  and just being relentless in pursuing success.”

Dyson said touring has been an eye-opening experience, emphasizing the value of exposure, connections and establishing a genuine connection with your audiences.

“If you think of the band as a business, then you, yourself, are the product,” says Dyson. “So we assume characters on stage, and people get drawn into the theatrics and the music and the moment.”

A band of both current and former UNC students, Ellis Dyson & the Shambles has a musical style ranging from laid-back mountain folk to upbeat, Prohibition-era jazz. 

“Being a six-piece is a tremendous opportunity for us, musically,” said Dyson. “It’s part of our character. It lets us play to the audience each night and make each performance unique.”

Tyler Souza, a first-year environmental science major from Alexandria, Virginia, said his experience at a recent show solidified him as a fan of the band. 

“They weave a lot of different musical elements into their sound,” said Souza. “The crowd gets into it — one of the most fun shows I’ve been to.”

Their stellar reputation has grown largely through local fans.

“It’s different from anything else I listen to,” said Sierra Homer, a senior from Jupiter, Florida, who became a fan after seeing the band’s sticker on a laptop. 

For the band, the spring tour has been an exciting opportunity to experiment with new and different sounds and antics.

“They call me dad with how anxious I get before shows,” said Dyson. “But when I get offstage, my legs go to jello, and I know we did what we came there to do.”


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