oMeet the Band

Karen B.

Karen is the leader of The Biscuits n Gravy Band.  Karen had dreams of a band that would produce a great sound, was diverse in sound and instruments, and a whole lot of fun and interactive with the crowds.  She started assembling the band in January of 2006 with the first member commitment from bass player, Dave K. and continued from there.
Karen started piano lessons at age 4 (her poor mother!) At 13, her good friend Raymond taught her a couple chords on the guitar. Raymond was a big influence on Karen’s musical interest. Karen also learned to play trumpet and baritone and played the baritone in the ISU Pep Band.  She has played piano and guitar in church for many years. Her true love is singing, and it shows. She has performed in church, weddings, contests and has played in a few other bands. She graduated from the Illinois State University School of Music and continues to incorporate music into her everyday life. Karen loves a challenge and continues to learn new instruments, with the most recent being the sax. Karen enjoys writing and performing her own music. She also coordinated and performed a concert to benefit The Baby Fold. .karenbairmusic.com

Karen is known to have GAS (in her mind, it is Gear Acquisition Syndrome). For gigs she brings along 4 keyboards; Roland RD600, Roland A-90, Roland D50 and a Korg CX-3. She also brings along a blue satin finish Fender Stratocaster, and her baby, a Martin DC-15E.

Karen has always and continues to receive encouragement from her parents.  Her musical influences are Karen Carpenter, Amy Grant and Ms. Doris Day


Steve S.

Steve is an awesome musician! He has played with BnG on several occasions and officially rejoined the band in January, 2014. Steve can make a saxophone sing, and that's not all - Steve plays keys, guitar and is an asset on vocals as well.

It's easy sailing when Steve is on stage. He fits in everywhere!


Mike C.

Mike joined the Biscuits n Gravy Band in March 2008. He plays a wide variety of styles which makes him a perfect fit for our band.

Check back for Mike's bio..he has many interesting things to share about himself. (And if he doesn't tell you about them, we will!)


Bob C.

Bob has played music for a long time and has been in several bands. His first big event was in Bitburg, Germany 1969 where he played in a high school band (Melody Raunch). His next big ‘gig’ was across the boarder in Izmir, Turkey where he played in an all acoustic band (Wild Oats). Bob has been around the Bloomington area for a while and has played with several bands including Rachel's Hippo, Annoyed Oyster and of course, the most famous of all The Biscuits n Gravy band. Bob is also involved in a praise band called the Imperfects in Eureka, Illinois

Bob got his first guitar for Christmas of 1967 while at a hotel in Bitburg Germany. His biggest musical influence is Roy Clark (and the Hee Haw honey's). He is so fond of Roy that they both use the same hair stylist!

Bob plays a Parker Fly (primary), Charvel Jackson/Peavey Wolfgang (backups) and uses a Fender Cyber Deluxe amp with midi controller, Boss EQ, Compressor pedals, and an Ibanez Tube Screamer.


Steve S.

Steve has mainly been involved in playing and singing contemporary Christian music the past six years at his home church in LeRoy, the First Presbyterian Church, where he and his family are very active. Steve is married, recently celebrating 25 happy years, and has two teenaged sons who are also musically inclined. His inspiration to finally exercise his penchant for music was when he attended a Christian retreat, the Great Banquet, where music was a big part of the weekend experience. Soon after that he picked up a guitar, taught himself some chords, and began playing and singing.

Steve believes there is enjoyable music in every variety, from Bluegrass to Zydeco, but mostly enjoys the rock-and-roll he grew up on. While very difficult to decide, Steve would declare R.E.M. his favorite band and greatest influence. His goal is to do justice to the original recordings so that everyone can have as much fun hearing it as he does performing.






Dave K.

Dave was born at a very early age, they say he was cute. His was a musical family where both parents and grandfathers were musicians. While he played around on various instruments, he picked up his first guitar at age 12 when The Beatles were being played on the radio. When he played a friend's bass guitar at 16, he was hooked! He bought his first bass at age 17 which was a red Teisco Jazz Bass copy and had a wonderful sound. Dave plays about anything with strings and frets, but bass guitar is his #1 mode of musical expression.

Dave learned from the greats such as Paul McCartney, Chris Squire and Stanley Clarke, but his primary source of inspiration has been his relationship with Jesus Christ. Dave was saved from a life that was on a downward spiral. When Dave plays, he tries to show Him in everything. He started playing in bands in high school and got ‘booed’ a lot, but got better in college and began playing in "pickup bands". Whoever was available would go play somewhere and form a band. They would figure out ten songs everyone knew and play them, then take a break and find ten more songs for the second set. Thank you to the late Rick Ventura for the education on improvising.

Dave played in a more stable rock band named "Frankenstein", so named because we were bits and pieces of other local bands. He also did stints in a Dixieland band and even spent a summer in a Holiday Inn band named "The Strangers". To this day he hopes he NEVER has to play "Tie a Yellow Ribbon 'Round the Old Oak Tree" again!!! Once out of college, Dave spent several years on his own writing songs and creating music on a cassette four-track in the "Music Room". He then spent 18 years in versions of the same Christian band named, "Task", then "Cross Fire" then finally "Xi'd" (Cross-eyed) with fellow BnG’er Steve White.

Dave owns 6 basses and 10 guitars but his favorite setup is a 1987 5-string Peavey Dyna Bass which he customized by adding a pickup phase switch and an Ampeg B-3 bass amp.


Steve W.

Steve started playing guitar in High School, which means he has spent 30 years at it and in his own words, ”still doesn't have a clue." He says “I don't play (guitar) for a living, so as a hobbyist, I do OK". And also adds, "I may be old... but at least I'm slow."

Steve had spent approximately 14 years playing in a local Christian rock band that broke-up 2 years ago. Along with his brother (a drummer) & Dave (TBG the bass guy) who plays bass for BnG, they occasionally get together and play churches & church functions, parks, youth groups, biker rallies, & holiday functions. When his brother decided to play drums for a secular band, Steve felt the itch to play again. With an invite from Karen (Bair), he hopped on the ‘band’ wagon once again. Pun intended.

Steve primarily plays Gibson guitars through a Peavey 212 stereo chorus amp, but has been known to whistle a tune or two on the harp as well. He also plays the bass for his church in Urbana, Il. (And he's a huge Illini fan). Steve is known to the other band members as “Smiley”…come see us and you’ll see what we are talking about!



Friends of The Biscuits n Gravy Band

Mary Bio Picture

Mary C.

Mary has been playing the piano and guitar in church for over 20 years. This includes traditional as well as contemporary music. She also plays special services related to church such as weddings, funerals, and other celebrations. For many years Mary has been involved in a folk group with a 'history twist' named “The Bound for Glory Singers”. They would perform at political fund raisers, historic relations, labor history, and peace and justice events. On a different note, Mary has also played with a rock-n-roll band for 4 years and they played a variety of music including blues, rock and roll, contemporary and originals.

Mary has always been interested in music, and enjoys improvisation more than formal note reading. She loves all types of music. As a full time member, Mary was one of the band's 'jack of all trades, master of none'. She plays keyboard, guitar, accordion, percussion, tambourine, the infamous cowbell and also sings backup. Mary was a full time member from 2006-2013.


Kenny P.

Kenny just might be the best tenor in Central Illinois and we're so lucky to have him perform with us.  Kenny is a great guy and so easy to work with. He was a full time member of BnG from the fall of 2009 to 2010.

If you really want to see what Kenny can do, just yell out 'Shake those money makers, Kenny!'


Matt S.

Our good friend Matthew Bodine performed with BnG for two years. Matt is keeping himself busy with his family. Keep an eye out though, Matt will join us on the stage from time to time.


Dave E.

Dave started playing sax as a senior in high school when they needed another tenor sax player to round out the section. Dave continued his playing with a group called Marijuana Brass in 1967 and played for annual Electric Co-op meetings all over Missouri. He has played baritone sax with the University of Missouri Studio Band 1967-1971, played tenor sax soul music in Ron Grubbs Soul Review and then with Aesop and the Fables for 2 years. Dave played piano and sax with the Comic Book Society until 1977 and then stopped playing for 24 years. Currently, he is playing tenor sax with the State Farm Big Band as a charter member since 2001, besides being in the B&G band! Dave is emotionally attached to the cowbell.

The tenor sax he is playing was his high school graduation present from his parents. It was made in 1955, and is a Conn 16M. His bari sax was a wreck that he obtained by trading an old alto for it. Dave likes to rebuild and refurbish instruments and took 2 years to rebuild the Conn built in 1919. Best of all, Dave has modified both horns with expensive rust and priceless dents.

In the band, Dave is the most ‘hair challenged’. He used to have hair down to his shoulders and has pictures to prove it (or so he says).



Mark S.

Mark has been around town and in the music business for a long time. Not only is he a great bass player, he’s pretty darn funny too! (Well, Karen sure gets a kick out of his one-liners anyway!) Mark is a good friend of The Biscuits n Gravy Band and has helped out on the bass line a time or two. Thanks Mark!

Mark keeps his real identity unknown as he portrays the bass player in other bands as well (of which all are a secret, so you didn’t read it here!) Sources say that he has contractual obligations with Rumpled Tweed (currently retired), Backs against the Wall, Thurmo Nuclear and the Fallouts, The Spirit Road Band, The Well Hungarians, Alan's Friday night Project (Mark wonders why they don’t call anymore?), Flat Wallet, Hazardous Waste, Unusual Suspects, The Barb Hamilton Band AND The Biscuits and Gravy Band..really, we’re the only one!

Mark’s shares that his codename is "Flatline". He earned this name due to a childhood microbial infestation that left him with an inability to get excited. The day by day struggles of living a life of past regrets of strange and not exactly discovered bass lines, the obvious becomes a mystery. Consistency in mistakes is style. Within minutes of talking with Mark, like all others you’ll immediately assume that someone switched the decaf on him.

Mark loves to go fishin’. Once after a late night practice with BnG, Mark said he was headed to Clinton Lake. Karen asked if he had worms, Mark said, “yea, but I’m goin’ fishin' anyway.” Karen said, “well OKaaaaaay then…”


Jeff M.

Jeff did a GREAT job filling-in on guitar while Steve W. nursed his injured finger back to full fretting fitness. (Thank You Jeff!) In addition to being new to Biscuits n Gravy, Jeff is a recent returnee to central Illinois, having grown up in Eureka. He is thrilled to pieces to have the chance to sit-in for a time and really looks forward to meeting all the friendly BnG Band fans. Since he knows few people in town, he encourages everyone to come up and say hi and perhaps buy him an adult beverage.

Jeff has played a lot of styles in a lot of bands over the years around Illinois, St. Louis and most recently in Milwaukee. He even remembers fronting a rockabilly band named "Go Cat Wild" that played in Normal at a place called "Finks" back in the early '80's. No one else will likely remember that event because there were only about five people in the crowd.

His influences cross the spectrum of American roots music--Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran, Link Wray to name a few. Blues artists like Hound Dog Taylor, Jimmie Vaughan, T-Bone Walker and the late-great Hollywood Fats also provided building blocks for his guitar education. But he reserves the top spot for the St. Louis Fathers of Rock-n-Roll Chuck Berry and piano player Johnnie Johnson.

A true Renaissance man, Jeff is fond of old, beat-up Fender guitars (he's got a bunch), cigarette and beer-stained Fender tube amps, long Cadillac cars and the call of the American road.



Danny H.

Danny has been a member of several different bands in his time, playing several different instruments. Focusing mostly on bass guitar and drums, he started in a blues rock band called "Crazy Bare" playing to some pretty wild college house parties. From there it was on to a hard rock/heavy metal group "Blazing Inferno", a punk quartet called "Terminal 12" and then a stint in the progressive rock group "Annexodus".

Danny shares skills similar to the other band members, as they all play multiple instruments, mostly with little or no formal training. Danny has had several years of musical instruction in bass and guitar, however, when it came to the drums he relied on reading books, listening to his favorite drummers, and of course his natural rhythm. Some of his influences include Neil Peart (Rush), Tommy Lee (Motley Crue),and Joey Jordison (various bands). Through it all, Danny is simply a fan of all good music with tastes ranging from ABBA to Slipknot and from Johnny Cash to Classical.

Danny joined the BnG Band from July 2007 to February 2008. Because the Biscuits n Gravy Band plays such a wide variety of music, his skills definitely got a workout (arms and feet flying everywhere!). Danny’s talent and appreciation for many genres of music, make it no small wonder that he fit right in with the other members of the band.

Danny plays Pearl Drums, Remo Heads, Ahead Sticks and an Assortment of Sabian, Zildian, and Paiste Cymbals because he wants the best.



Brian M.

Brian is an outstanding musician. He's heard and played various genres which was certainly a benefit when playing with the BnG band. Brian stretched his availability for a short time to help us out while our new drummer was getting up to speed.

Brian will always be considered a good friend to the folks in BnG.



Garard M.

Garard is an excellent sax player and has shared his talent on the BnG stage. He will join up with us again at the end of 2007 for a performance and we're looking forward to the opportunity of playing another gig with Garard.



Rob W.

Have you ever met our friend, Rob?..he's a great drummer and wow, what a sense of humor! Rob has played in a variety of bands, making it very easy to perform with him.

We wish him well as he continues with his drumming adventures!



Brian B.

Our good buddy Brian helped us get up and running and agreed to play with us until a permanent drummer was available to join the group.

Brian is a great guy and we all feel very lucky that we had an opportunity to play along with him and get to know him better.

There has been an occasional 'Brian' sighting at the BnG gigs - it's always good to see you!

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