There are rabid fans of many book, film, or TV franchises but fans of Harry Potter surely rate up there with Star Wars geeks and Trekkies. As an example, does Star Wars have its own music genre? Wizard Rock started in the US in 2002 and has quickly grown to encompass over 400 bands worldwide who dress up and sing about, you guessed it, Harry Potter. And whilst most are relegated to the confines of a library performance for 5 year olds, some have broken through and are playing to sell out crowds of over 600. We thought we’d go through some of our favourite picks in this totally bizarre genre of music.
Harry And The Potters Harry and The Potters are a brother duo from Massachusetts who are credited with starting the entire genre. Paul, the old brother, plays as Harry Potter Year 7, whilst younger brother Joe is Harry Potter Year 4. The band formed in their backyard after a concert they had planned fell into crisis after none of the bands showed up. Since then they have gone to release 3 albums, were the subject of a documentary, and have been called by The Boston Phoenix the “Pink Floyd of Potterdom”.
The Whomping Willows Formed in Rhode Island and inspired by Harry and The Potters and Draco and the Malfoys, The Whomping Willows is actually a solo act by Matt Maggiacomo who rather than use a character as a persona writes his songs from the perspective of the angry tree in Hogwarts.
Swish and Flick Formed in New York this married couple introduced the world of Wizard Rock to rap and hip hop. She takes on the persona of Astoria Greengrass singing about Slytherin House and making out with Draco Malfoy, whilst he provides backing vocals and guitar. Notable for songs such as ‘Cho Chang (Shake Your Thang)’, and ‘Like A Death Eater’.
The Moaning Myrtles An all girl group formed in Hillsborough, New Jersey by two best friends after seeing a concert by Harry and The Potters, They write their piano-based music from the perspective of character Moaning Myrtle who is a ghost in the Hogwarts school.
The 8th Horcrux Formed in Ottawa, Kansas, The 8th Horcrux is a guy and girl duo who aim to promote literature through comedy and song. Notable for mostly covering famous songs and rewriting the lyrics some of their gems include ‘Ginnys Love Story’ (covering Love Story by Taylor Swift), and ‘Im on a Broom’ (covering Im On A Boat by The Lonely Island)
Draco and The Malfoys Formed in Rhode Island by Brian Ross and Bradley Mehlenbacher as the whimsical nemesis of Harry and The Potters, Draco and The Malfoys sing all their songs from the perspective of Harry Potter rival Draco Malfoy. Singing songs such as ‘My Dad is Rich’, ‘Your Family is Poor’, and ‘Tom Felton's Kinda Hot’ the band regularly appears with friends Harry and The Potters. On an interesting note Bradley also worked as studio and touring drummer for Gordon Gano of The Violent Femmes.
The Parselmouths Formed in Renton, Washington in 2004 by friends Kristina Horner and Brittany Vahlberg, The Parselmouths play folk Wizard Rock with a twist. They have created their own characters from the Harry Potter universe. The also formed after seeing a Harry and The Potters concert and play their own characters as two Slytherin school girls who try to show that Slytherin’s aren’t all evil. MTV ranked The Parselmouths as the 3rd best Wizard Rock band and they have since gone on to release 3 studio albums.
Gred and Forge A one-man band formed by Jarrod Perkins who plays George Weasley and sings songs as a tribute to the memory of his late brother Fred. He has released two albums including ‘Half the Band I Used To Be’ and sing songs such as ‘Ginny Gets Around’ and ‘It Sucked When Dad Was Bitten By Nagini’. Jarrod also plays drums in The Remus Lupins, another Wizard Rock band.
The Remus Lupins Formed in 2005 after frontman Alex Carpenter perfomed a song about Snape at a party and realised that he wanted to continue to sing songs about Harry Potter. Hailing from the Punk Rock persuasionthe band has gone on to release four studio albums with notable songs including ‘Rita Skeeter’ and ‘Teenage Werewolf’.
Ministry Of Magic A five-piece electronica/power-pop outfit who named themselves after the government department responsible for all supernatural matters. Ministry of Magic have quickly climbed the ranks of Wizard Rock to be one of the most successful and popular bands in the genre.
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