The Situation A little past midnight on Friday, August 13, I'm at the Twilight Exit with indie-rock quintet Yuni in Taxco—brothers Ross and Bryce Beamish, Sean Beszhak, Jim Saunders, and Isaiah Washington.
YUNI IN TAXCO With Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, The Head and the Heart. Mural Amphitheater, Seattle Center, 684-7200. Free. All ages. 5 p.m. Fri., Aug. 27.
Intoxication We're having some beers, and the band's been here about an hour already, celebrating Bryce's 25th birthday. There's a bro-down vibe—Washington and Ross even live together with a 25-pound cat named Fat Boy and his mother, Mama. "They hate each other," says Ross. "He tried to breast-feed off her until he was like a year old. I had to slap him off her, and he wouldn't stop. Now they've got bad blood."
How They Got Here Bryce works at the airport, Ross and Washington are both baristas, and Beszhak's been doing some creative landscaping. "I am building my parents a pond in their backyard," he says. "They're paying me a very little amount of money. Today I dug up some grass, put in some gravel. We're on our way to a pond." Later he tells me his other source of income is getting money from his girlfriend.
Before Saunders got here, he watched the Rolling Stones documentary Stones in Exile. "I got inspired, went down to the studio and started writing a song," he says. "And then I realized it was a Rolling Stones song."
Shop Talk I try to understand how the band name originated. Apparently the Beamishes had a friend who married a woman named Yuni, "this really awesome free spirit." Ross ended up writing a story about Yuni driving to a small town in Mexico called Taxco. Or something.
The band just released a self-titled EP, and in October they fly to Iceland to play Iceland Airwaves, an industry event they describe as "the SXSW of Europe." They're hoping Bryce's airline discount comes in handy.
BTW: They have a pretty standard guitars/bass/percussion formula, but do they ever get mistaken for a mariachi band? "We had one review that said we had a Latin rhythm section," says Ross. "They said we were the perfect band to eat a burrito with."