Brown Eyed Women is an ensemble of powerful female players from popular bands around the country, celebrating the music of the Grateful Dead with a unique spin.
Members hail from Massachusetts, New Jersey, Florida, New York, Georgia and Pennsylvania. Their high-caliber musicianship and shared love of the Dead drew them together. This band is decidedly different in a field brimming with tribute acts. BEW brings authentic jams and a soulful new approach to the familiar Grateful Dead catalog.
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Joni Bottari - Lead Guitar
Caroline Killoh - Keys, Vox
Denise Parent - Drums, Lead Vox
Jill Simmons - Lead Vox
Katie Moore - Rhythm Guitar, Vox
Dana Carroll - Bass
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An all-female Grateful Dead band? Hell yes!
And this is no novelty act: They're all first-rate musicians who formed a strong musical alliance and hit the road running. An outstanding addition to this burgeoning musical community.
- David Gans, Musician, Author, Radio Host
Joni Bottari – Lead Guitar
Joni Bottari grew up on the Jersey Shore, and picked up the guitar at an early age while tagging along with her brother to his band rehearsals. Her earliest influences were The Band, Bob Dylan, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. In 1970, her brother brought home American Beauty and Workingman’s Dead and that was it, a 10 year old Deadhead was born.
Upon moving to NYC in 1983, she answered an ad in the Village Voice, and auditioned for lead guitar for an all-female punk band called Spellbound. Joni performed in iconic venues in NYC, including CBGB's and The Bitter End. In 2007 Joni relocated to florida and cofounded several Grateful dead tribute bands including Unlimited Devotion, Girl Jerry, and Spiral Light. While Joni's most significant influence is Jerry Garcia, like Garcia, she enjoys playing all genres of music including blues, country and rock. In 2018, Joni's guitar playing attracted the attention of Rock n Roll Hall of Famer, Dion Dimucci. Dion requested that Joni accompany him on guitar and the duo played an invitation only gig in Palm Beach, Florida.
And now the journey continues. Joni is excited to share the stage with these super talented female musicians and perform in Brown Eyed Women for deadheads everywhere. All the years combined, they melt into a dream......
Dana D'Agostino Carroll – Bass
Dana D’Agostino Carroll originally hails from Philadelphia PA,. Dana began playing bass at the age of 12, influenced early on as a young fan of Paul McCartney. She played with several Philly area rock cover and original projects in her early years.
Upon relocation to New Jersey in 2005, Dana joined Nocturnal Element, and original project, and TS Express, a bluegrass project. She played in an opening act for 60's band Vanilla Fudge's 2011 tour at the iconic Stone Pony in Asbury Park. Dana has had the privilege of sharing the stage with Terrapin Family Band's Scott Guberman, and other notable musicians in her local music scene. Dana ultimately found her joy upon forming New Jersey's popular Grateful Dead tribute Lovelight Band in 2011. Lovelight continues to this day to be her musical heartbeat.
Dana is excited to be a part of Brown Eyed Women, and feels it is an idea whose time has come, she is looking forward to joining in song with these incredible women! Without love in the dream it will never come true......
Caroline Killoh – Keyboards, Vocals
Caroline Killoh developed a passion for music at an early age. She trained in classical piano at Worcester School of Performing Arts (MA) as a teen, but it wasn’t long before she began focusing most of her attention toward the rock genre.
Since then, she has been keyboardist/vocalist in several Massachusetts-based rock bands. Past bands include: Hoobis Doobis, Smokehouse, Undercover, and BeatleTracks. Current bands include Brown Eyed Women, Fennario, Don’t Let Go and Ship of the Sun.
Most notable performances as keyboardist/vocalist include: Terry Sylvester (The Hollies) show covering Rubber Soul album; Fennario at Fenway Park for Grateful Dead night; BeatleTracks Dead Air Live at Somerville Community Access TV, Women of Worcester concert. Caroline also has her own side band, called Sonejy, featuring her jam-oriented originals.
Current musical equipment includes: Nord Electro 4D, Hammond XK-1C keyboard, and QSC K12. Outside of music, Caroline owns her own accounting/bookkeeping business, and lives with her partner Dan, and their 3 cats Simba, Roscoe and Luna in the Boston MA region.
Katie Moore - Rhythm Guitar
Katie was born in Texas, raised in upstate NY, but has called Atlanta home since 16. She taught herself guitar by watching her dad play (then practicing on his Martin D-28 after he went to bed.) Her first musical loves were British: Beatles, Pink Floyd, The Who, Dire Straits, Elton. She saw her first Dead show in 1981. In that time, popular music felt synthetic, so she was drawn by Dead's rootsy authenticity - and the people who followed them. (You probably saw her dancing in the taper section, or bought one of her veggie sandwiches in the lot afterward!)
The Dead's music opened her up to a wider world of American music. As a player, Bob Weir's complex, jazz-based rhythms became an immediate obsession, and they continue to influence her style. Katie is known for her tight, syncopated rhythms and is frequently tapped for sessions and sit-ins.
Katie was a seminal member of the Atlanta jam scene as part of the first incarnation of The Grapes. She plays in numerous bands, from acoustic Dead to New Orleans funk, but her primary band is Deep Blue Sun, who've been headlining throughout the south since 1999. Dead & Company's Oteil Burbridge, fellow Atlantan, has joined them on stage several times. She is a songwriter with several albums of material, an animal lover, and can make a mean pot of soup.
Denise Parent – Drums, Lead Vocals
Denise Parent has been singing for as long as she can remember and started playing drums at the age of sixteen on Long Island. She fell in love with the Grateful Dead when she was 18 years old and started going to as many shows as she could.
Denise spent her early twenties learning from the Dead and Long Island favorites, the Zen Tricksters.
After moving to New Paltz, NY to finish college, Denise joined The Deadbeats as their drummer and vocalist . The Deadbeats are a long standing Grateful Dead tribute band in the Capital Region. Helping to expand their repertoire beyond Dead, she has been singing songs by Janis Joplin, Aretha Franklin, Bonnie Raitt and Grace Slick, taking the shows to a new level.
Denise has played approximately 3500 shows, honoring the music of the Grateful Dead. She has played with Buddy Cage, Vassar Clements, Garth Hudson, and has been the opening act for inspiring artists like NRPS, and the David Nelson Band.
When she’s not playing with the Deadbeats, she can be found singing and playing drums and guitar with an assortment of players in the Woodstock area. After many years of dreaming up the all-female Dead band, she has now helped put together the pieces of Brown Eyed Women. Nothing left to do but smile, smile, smile......
Jill Simmons – Lead Vocals
Jill Simmons hails from Pittsburgh, Pa. and has sang from the moment she could talk according to her parents. Jill’s musical background runs the gamut from musicals and gospel to blues, jazz and jam bands. Jill never had singing lessons, and her she honed her skills on the stages of many Pittsburgh music clubs. Jill’s influences include Barbara Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Bonnie Raitt, Eva Cassidy, Ella Fitzgerald and Susan Tedecschi.
Multi-dimensional singer, Jill Simmons, got on the bus 10 years ago as one of the lead singers for Pittsburgh jam band, theCAUSE. Her ability to channel Pig Pen tunes in her own style has been a hallmark trait of ability to elevate theCause into one of the top jam bands in the Northeast.
Jill’s musical journey in the jam band scene has given her the opportunity to share the stage with David Gans, Roosevelt Collier, Steve Kimock, Lisa Mackey and Jeff Mattson from Dark Star Orchestra. Grass is Dead, Unlimited Devotion and Playing Dead. Her energy on stage and talented vocal abilities has earned her a national reputation and her contribution to Brown Eyed Women will be undeniable. Her ability to take Dead tunes and make it her own has been her trademark for many years.
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