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Musicians in the making

A three-piece band from La Cañada hopes to make it big.

July 06, 2011|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com
  • Charles Christopher, 13, of the Christopher Brothers, sings and plays lead guitar during rehearsal at MDM Rehearsal Studios, in Los Angeles, on Friday, July 1, 2011. (Tim Berger/Staff Photographer)
Charles Christopher, 13, of the Christopher Brothers,…

It has all come together quickly for the Christopher Brothers. They learned to play their first song together, Santana’s “Black Magic Woman,” in 15 minutes.

Cameron, Charles and Ethan Christopher

first started playing music together in November of 2008 at the suggestion of their mom, Lydia Christopher. They each took to their own instrument — Charles, the guitar; Cameron, the drums; and Ethan, the bass guitar.

“I couldn’t believe it, they just started grooving together,” said Lydia Christopher, who as a flutist whose own parents are opera singers and music writers has imparted a musical background to her kids.

Three months after learning their first song, The Christopher Brothers had their first gig.

“It actually sounded OK,” Charles said. “It didn’t sound like a horrible train wreck.”

From there, The Christopher Brothers have only worked on getting better, putting plenty of time into developing their craft.

“I don’t know when we started sounding good,” said Cameron, a 15-year old incoming junior to LCHS, drummer and backup singer for the band. “We just keep going forward and getting better and better.”

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Since 2008 the trio has played more than 30 gigs, including performances at Magic Mountain, Legoland, the Vancouver Wine and Jazz Festival, the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, local festivals or fairs and birthday parties or bat mitzvahs. The Christopher Brothers will perform at the iconic Whiskey A Go Go in West Hollywood on July 9.

“People compare us to the Hanson and the Jonas Brothers,” said Charles, a 13-year old incoming freshman at La Cañada High, who provides lead vocals for the band.

The Christopher Brothers have the makings of a pop sensation, but their roots are in classic rock. The trio can play more than 40 cover songs, which are mostly their favorite classic-rock tunes from bands like the Rolling Stones, the Beatles, Guns N’ Roses and much more.

Their song-writing efforts usually produce pop tunes, said Jeremy Castillo, a studio musician and instructor who’s coached the brothers for the past two years.

“I have taught a lot of students and the thing that impressed me the most was that the original songs they write are usually pretty catchy,” Castillo said. “That’s the hardest part. It’s easy to write a bad song. It’s hard to write a good one that has legs.”

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