The Eastport Oyster Boys is a musical ensemble with a long history in Annapolis. Originally a duo called "Them Eastport Oyster Boys" and officially proclaimed Musical Goodwill Ambassadors of Annapolis, they have performed all over the world.
Before The Band
The Eastport Oyster Boys, formerly Them Eastport Oyster Boys, was formed following the breakup of a local Eastport band Crab Alley. After 10 years of Crab Alley, co-founder Jeff Holland and bass player Kevin Brooks formed Them Eastport Oyster Boys.
Jeff Holland discovered Annapolis after sailing the upper East Coast with his father in 1978. After passing a fleet of the Navy's Luder yawls on the Severn River, they dropped anchor and found their new home. Brooks contributed to local newspapers in the 1980's as well as writing songs about the Chesapeake Bay. These songs lead to the creation of Crab Alley alongside Janie Meneeley.
Kevin Brooks joined Crab Alley as their bass player in the latter half of the band's existence. After the band parted ways, Brooks soon partnered with Holland again as a duo that played on the Schooner Woodwind cruises. The two-piece would go on to form the first rendition of the band, Them Eastport Oyster Boys.
Early Years: Them Eastport Oyster Boys
As a duo, Brooks and Holland performed throughout the Eastport peninsula and played a large role in the succession of Eastport from Annapolis and creation of the Maritime Republic of Eastport. Their music ranges from Celtic to soul, and tells true and exaggerated stories of the Chesapeake Bay and maritime activity.
Eastport Oyster Boys
As the band has evolved over the past 25 years, the lineup has culminated a unique four-piece arrangement that brings guest musicians on stage time-to-time. Holland left the band in 2010 to serve in other realms of the maritime community, while Brooks has switched to playing guitar. Alongside Brooks is Tom Guay, Make Lange, and Andy Fegley.
- Kevin Brooks - Guitar and Banjitar
- Tom Guay - Fiddle, Guitar, Hammer Dulcimer. Similar to Holland, Guay was a writer in the Maryland area who eventually settled back down in Annapolis as a musician. His maritime authorship extends from publishing books to the songs performed today.
- Mike Lange - Keyboards, Melodica, Ukulele. Taking a different approach, the software engineer uses the band as a creative outlet to write songs and as a way to connect with friends.
- Andy Fegley - Trombone, Percussion, Guitar. Fegley is a long time mariner who works with electrical systems in the boat and yachting industry. Musically, he has played in the Bay Winds Concert Band and was the catalyst of the Eastport Chamberpot Orchestra in 1998.
While the group largely plays in and around Maryland, they have played farther from home as well. The band plays events in multiple ways. Brooks plays solo, Brooks and Gauy play as the EOB Duo, and the full four-piece plays private, public, and non-profit events. Notable performances include:
- Performance for President Jimmy Carter and the Carter Foundation
- Kinsale Jazz Fest, County Cork, Ireland
- State of Maryland Musical Ambassadors, Viljandi Folk Life Music Festival, Viljandi, Estonia
- Prince Theatre, Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia
- Private Performance for NATO and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
- Stanley Foundation, Washington DC