Stomp Grass: Silverton’s Deadwood Standing plays Mac’s

January 2016 Posted in Arts, Culture & History

Deadwood StandingBy Melissa Wagoner

Deadwood Standing describes its music as a “mix of mountain music, punk rock attitude, rock beats and a classically trained musician’s ear.”

“It’s stomp grass,” 46-year-old drummer Chuck Howley said, “a more rocking kind of bluegrass.”

Part of what makes Deadwood Standing’s sound so unique and difficult to describe is the combination of talent that makes up the band.

Lead singer and self-taught string instrument guru Ty Boland, 36, founded the band three years ago with Howley when they met working in horticulture at The Oregon Garden.

“Me and Chuck started playing because he found out I played guitar,” Boland said.

They added a third coworker, 26-year-old Dylan Barr, a classically trained musician playing the keyboard, guitar and bass.

“Dylan had just broke up with his girlfriend and we found out he played bass,” Boland said.

The trio named themselves Deadwood Standing, a reversal of the forestry term standing deadwood, to pay homage to their interest in forestry and plants.

Deadwood Standing
Deadwood Standing lead singer
Ty Boland at the Wildwood Music Festival.
The group, with its roots in The Oregon Garden,
will perform Saturday, Jan. 23, 9 p.m.
to midnight at Mac’s Place, 201 N. Water St.
To preview their music, visit

The band’s fourth member, Courtney Fast, 39, is a former punk music band member, guitarist and the only one without a horticultural background.

In joining the band Fast not only took on a new music genre but also a new instrument, the bass.

“Courtney’s progressed significantly in just being able to jam,” Boland said.

All four musicians have been playing instruments of since early childhood, with most starting out classically by playing the piano.

deadwood02Howley, however, has always been a drummer.

“I started playing the drums when I was about seven,” Howley said. “When I was in the seventh grade I started playing Star Wars and the teacher kicked me out, but an intern pulled me aside and told me he was wrong and music was supposed to be about your own expression.”

That encounter changed what could have been a short musical career into a life-long love affair with music.

Boland described performing as “the most fun ever. Anybody who knows how to play wants to play in a band. You’re chasing that high. It’s incredible,” he said.

Playing original material written by members of the band, Deadwood Standing primarily plays in bars around the Willamette Valley where they consider themselves, “regionally successful.”

They have been featured at the Wildwood Music Festival in Willamina, Silverton Day at The Oregon Garden and as the opening act for Sasparilla at The Oregon Garden Brewfest. The band performs at Mac’s Place in Silverton Jan. 23, 9 p.m..

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