The Piano Guys

Marketing professionals will tell you that often, simplicity and directness is the key to establishing brand identity. So if you buy a ticket to see The Piano Guys, don’t expect to hear a horn section. Though you will, oddly enough, get a cello. Producers, videographers, songwriters and musicians Paul Anderson, Jon Schmidt, Steven Sharp Nelson and Al Van Der Beek have created a unique niche with their on-fire social media-driven videos, often either covers of other pop culture ephemera. Sometimes, all four men will play the same piano at once, making for a crowded bench (though Schmidt and Nelson handle most musical duties). Their upcoming record, Wonders, features damn classy sounding takes on tunes by One Direction, Dave Matthews, Philip Phillips, and the Frozen soundtrack (not to mention “Batman Evolution,” a sonic travel of the superhero’s themes through the years). “It’s just cool to see a piano and cello in crazy locations, and mix genres of music,” Anderson said in an interview for Music Express Magazine. And the key to getting a full-size piano on top of a high and precarious-looking desert cliff for their African-style cover of Coldplay’s “Peponi?” Easy. “Have a friend with a helicopter!”

8 p.m Bayou Music Center, 520 Texas. For information, call 713-230-1600 or visit bayoumusiccenter.com. $35 to $55.
Wed., Sept. 24, 7 p.m., 2014

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Bob Ruggiero has been writing about music, books, visual arts and entertainment for the Houston Press since 1997, with an emphasis on classic rock. He used to have an incredible and luxurious mullet in college as well. He is the author of the band biography Slippin’ Out of Darkness: The Story of WAR.
Contact: Bob Ruggiero