It makes sense that a band born and raised in Dayton, Ohio, which has donned the mantle of funk capital, would be compelled to construct the monstrously heavy drum syncopation that opens Swithold’s “Slow Burner.” As the band’s leader and only consistent member over their nearly ten-year tenure, Ed Lamb recalls a different inspiration. “We were trying to get some of the disco sound in there,” he recalls about the band’s first and only single. Lamb and the rest of the band grew up in and around Dayton’s Belmont neighborhood and reluctantly attended Belmont high school. As a freshman in 1967, Lamb learned guitar and formed a quintet by his sophomore called Hope. His brother Mike Lamb got the bass gig and Ed recruited Jack Haas as rhythm guitar, Jim Clinger on keys, and drummer Mark Worstein. Hope was just an aspirational term, not referencing anything in particular, and they shed it after about a year.
Other than playing house parties and a few requisite talent shows, Hope made little impact. They needed a rebrand, and a membership shake up. They changed their name to Swithold… a reference to the Shakespeare character Saint Withold (which was contracted to Swithold in King Lear.) By the name change, Mike, Jack, and Mark had all been replaced. While still in high school, they... more
- Swithold Slowburner