With a constant touring schedule, 3
independently released albums, a high energy live-show and a charismatic
front person, Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls have distinguished themselves
as one of the mid-west's hardest working bands. Their first self-titled
release, their second release, "Inaba," and "Hulathong,"
the most recent offering from Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls, have
sold more than 5,000 copies. Most of those CD's were sold from the stage.
On-line they've sold CD's as far away as Tel Aviv, the Netherlands,
Leo & Bob Kelly met one of their younger brother's friends, Liz,
at a party in 1999. Bob just returned from a teaching stint in Japan.
Liz was a recent high school graduate. Within a few practices they knew
they had something special. A brief phone call to a local drum instructor
led them to Greg Hipskind. The line-up is solid, and has not changed
in six years.
From the beginning Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls have toured. With
shows as far away as Easter Ohio and Western South Dakota, and regular
performances between Indianapolis & Omaha, the band has built a
loyal and solid fan base in the heart of America. Thousands of names
populate the band's mailing list, with fans ranging in age from 8 to
78! Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls have mass appeal.
Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls have played festivals, colleges, bars,
clubs, living rooms, back yards, baseball stadiums, coffee houses, and
every other imaginable scenario. Along the way they've shared the stage
with many national acts, including current Country favorites Sugarland,
Richard Marx, Ton Loc (yes, the Ton Loc!), REO Speedwagon, and Hootie
& the Blowfish.
2005 was a great year to date for the band. "Hulathong,"
the band's 3rd independent release was recorded in January with gold-record
producer Tom Tatman at Catamount Studios in Cedar Falls, Iowa. According
to Tatman, "You guys have what it takes to make it. Great songs,
a tight, rockin band that's fun to see, and a singer with serious star
power. With the right breaks, you could go a long way." Released
in late June, "Hulathong" has sold almost 4,000 copies!!!
In January Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls performed live on-the-air
at KUNI, Iowa Public Radio for a segment called "Live from Studio
One." The show has been re-broadcast several times, and songs from
the evening are often included (along with other Bellyswirl music) in
the station's programming. In November the band released its' first
DVD. A live concert, with road footage, and an early promo piece, and
an audio commentary, the DVD is a snapshot of a hardworking band in
its' prime. November will also see the band featured on Iowa Public
Television's weekly program, "Living in Iowa." Six songs from
"Hulathong" were recorded to be played throughout the season
as closing segments to this popular IPTV program.
The line-up is the same, but lives
have changed. In the last couple of years Liz, Greg & Bob have
gotten married, started families, and the touring schedule has slowed.
But 2012 promises to be another exciting year! Liz has a handful
of new songs written or partially written, and everyone is excited to
get out and start playing them live.