LIVE: The Oshima Brothers @ Caffe Lena, 11/7/2019

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The Oshimas just want to make you dance.

When you are in a band of two, you have to get creative with your sound. Jamie and Shawn Oshima have made it seem almost effortless. Through dedication and hard work, they have managed to make themselves sound like they are a much larger band than just the brother duo that they are. 

Shawn is the more loquacious of the two, with a wholesome charm and a quick wit. Jamie is the dedicated mad scientist of sound, constantly experimenting with different ways to make their songs more unique. He plays multiple instruments, and during the show at Caffè Lena on Thursday night, he displayed some of these talents. Over the course of the show, he played guitar, and while doing so, he would play the bass on the bottom two strings. He uses his feet to drum, and to get the crash of the cymbal, he uses the headstock to hit it without dropping a single chord. It’s impressive to watch. About his brother, Shawn said, “If you can have one guy who just does everything really well – I highly recommend that.” It was the teasing nature between two brothers, constantly joking as only siblings can. It is obvious that Shawn appreciates all that his brother can do, making note of all his skills as the boys played.  Despite their recent success with the song “These Cold Nights” reaching a million streams on Spotify, they are still humble, shocked by the growing number of fans.  When asked about how they felt during the Hangin’ and Sangin’ podcast recorded before the show, they said that they, “…really couldn’t wrap their heads around it.” 

The music of the Oshima Brothers is often inspired by the vastness of nature. Thursday night was cold and rainy, the kind of weather that makes you want to seek out someplace cozy and inviting. Caffè Lena was just the right place, and the Oshima Brothers provided the perfect soundtrack. Before playing “9 Mile Kite” they noted that it was a song that had been written for nights that were cold and perhaps dark, but also wild and mysterious. “Hearts as Full as the Moon” was written while driving through Cumberland, Maine and admiring what they saw outside their own window.  “These Cold Nights”, their biggest song to date, was inspired by looking at the night sky. They marvel at the idea of being connected, particularly by being connected through the stars since everyone is watching the same night sky. 

On November 22nd, the Oshima Brothers will be releasing another song with a beautiful melody. It was inspired by the ocean, by the rolling waves that stretch endlessly on and on into the horizon. It’s called “Lost at Sea”, and it’s worth a listen. Being able to hear it before its release was certainly a treat.

“I just want to make music and share it with people and make them move,” Shawn said. Their mission is one of joy, and it’s modest considering all that the two have to offer. They want to see you happy, and it’s clear that they feed off the positive energy in the room. The fans in Caffè Lena were supportive that night, some having come quite the distance to see the Oshimas perform. With an ever growing fanbase, their shows are sure to become packed in the future. They’re a hidden gem that we’ve been lucky to hear while they’re still in their early stages.  The Oshima Brothers are definitely a band to keep an eye on because it is clear that they are on a mission to make everyone feel happier, and who can’t get on board with that? 

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