We've been lucky enough to have a few people write about what we do at Banana Stand. Here is what they have said.
"There was Paris and the cabarets in the 1920's. London's 100 Club was the spot in the 1960's. San Francisco took over during the late '60's and carried on through the early 1970's with Bill Graham's Fillmore. Then NYC took the torch with CBGB's as the center of the new musical universe. Seattle's grunge revolution had the Off Ramp in the 1990's. And now it appears that Portland may be getting it's own turn in a new musical world where the Internet reigns supreme, flash mobs happen at the drop of a tweet, and house parties have become the preferred means of seeing live music for die hard fans. Portland's best kept secret, and possible ground zero of the latest wave of bands set to take over the world, must be The Banana Stand. A bit presumptuous, you might say. But give it a few years and when we all look back at the great moment that came and went, The Banana Stand will be the firm record of what we all experienced in that moment. And The 'Stand's recordings will be the hard document of what the Portland music scene really was like."
"I always keep tabs on the goings on at local clubs, yet I'd never heard of this venue. I looked it up online and found out that Live From The Banana Stand was a video and recording series some folks were putting on in a local residence and making available on the web. It looked interesting, and the set by Blue Skies for Black Hearts sounded pretty damn good..."
Larry Crane, Reaching Out
Tape Op: The Creative Recording Magazine
"Banana Stand Media knows a thing or two about all of this, and after spending most of the past year in stealth mode, they're ready to brag about the amazing behind-the-scenes work they've been doing for Portland's vibrant music community. ... With an emphasis placed squarely on the music and the musicians, the underground mentality of the Stand has appealed to a wide swath of Portland bands. Since late 2007, when a group of Indiana transplants conceived the Stand's mission, there have been more than 90 live sets recorded at their private hideout, and nearly 40 live albums released via the Stand's website on a pay-what-you-want basis."
Ryan J Prado, The Peel Sessions - Banana Stand Media Comes Above Ground
The Portland Mercury
"The Banana Stand is more than just a house venue here in town. (And no, we can't tell you where it is.) It's an impressive, fully loaded recording facility that captures bands in that most spontaneous of settings: the live performance. Banana Stand Media has been kicking out really solid live recordings of local bands for some time now..."
Ned Lannamann, Banana Stand's Towering Trees Live Session
The Portland Mercury
"In the past five years, more than 50 bands have played the Banana Stand, the Indiana transplants’ recording studio, label headquarters and “all-ages pseudo venue,” housed in their rental home’s 1,000-square-foot basement. Initially, their only aspiration for the space was using it to throw “kick-ass house shows.” And that’s basically what they do. Except their shows live on past the single, glorious night in which they occur. Each one is recorded and made available to the public, through their website and a short run of CDs. Their shows kick ass in perpetuity. In a music scene as ephemeral as Portland’s, that serves a crucial purpose."
Matt Singer, The Basement Tapers
"But with nearly half the songs on the set list running eight minutes or longer, many of the album’s gems surface when Trueb cracks them open with his guitar. In lengthy tracks like the trippy “In My Time of Dying” and the driving rock jam “Mona Lisa’s Death,” the frontman disassembles ideas, draws out phrases and slowly builds them up again. Although the album doesn’t quite hit with the impact of experiencing the band in the flesh, it comes pretty damn close."
Emilee Booher, Album Review: Tango Alpha Tango - Live From the Banana Stand
"In the basement of a garden-variety two-story house in Southeast, magic is happening. Midwestern transplants Louie Herr and Aaron Colter have spent the bulk of the past four years cultivating an idea: capture and bottle up the Portland house show experience, and give it away for free (or donation). They invite bands and friends to their now-secret shows to participate in the gleaning. There might not always be money in this Banana Stand, but the magic and the music is there in a big way."
Ryan Dornfeld, Local Hero: Banana Stand Media
"Banana Stand Media is a really interesting project that focuses on making live recordings by Portland bands for a small audience in what they claim is a "secret venue." Since it's apparently in someone's house, I'm assuming that after four years of activity it's not as secret as it once was. But the cool thing is that they don't charge the bands and they release recordings on a "pay-what-you-want" basis while documenting their local scene."
"And a few years after that banana stand burned down, some Midwest transplants decided to build their own banana stand in Portland. Since 2007, it’s evolved into a record label and a secret venue located in SE Portland where a team of music aficionados strive to document Portland’s music scene through live recordings. Their efforts can be accessed on Banana Stand Media, which serves as a portal to their work and mission as well as an outlet for the crew to share photos, interviews (often conducted with the bands that perform at the ‘Stand), and comments on new musical discoveries, local and otherwise."
Chris Young, ‘Live from The Banana Stand’: A Q/A with ‘Stand founders
Oregon Music News
"The guys at the Banana Stand have really got it going on in the ‘having-their-shit-together’ department. They’re some of the most professional folks we’ve ever worked with and to top it off, they’re really nice, friendly dudes."
Lead Singer, The Angry Orts
"For me, the Banana Stand combines two of my favorite things about making music: epic house shows and recording. The 'Stand gang manages to approach all aspects of those two things with extraordinary attention to detail and creativity without sacrificing an ounce of the in-the-moment energy that separates a good house show from a great one. I also love how much of an online presence they have. Any band in town could learn something about internet self-promotion from observing how the Banana Stand maintains an online presence. The Banana Stand's contribution to Portland music is immense, both online and off."
"Banana stand was, and remains one of the best experiences we've had as a band. The sense of support and community are off the charts, and we were truly humbled to be a part of it. From the booking, promotion, execution, post production, and release of our tracks, everything was handled with the utmost professionalism. I really don't have one negative thing to say. Before we came in to do our show, we had been struggling with a lot of issues within and outside of the band as a group. Our experience with Banana stand is really a big part of what helped us as a band get over a few hurdles we were facing. My only regret is I wish every city had an opportunity like this for its bands. Banana stand is one of the things that makes Portland such an awesome place to be a musician in. This is the kind of thing, the kind of "something special" that is going to be documented and looked back on with awe 20 years from now. Its the CBGB of Portland."
Drummer, The Hague
"The Banana Stand was one of the first places we ever played in Portland and the recordings from our two sessions there are a huge part of the band's history. The 'Stand is here to document the musical history of Portland and all the good people, bands and beer cans involved."
Lead Singer, Guitarist, The We Shared Milk
"Working with the Banana Stand was the best recording experience we have had. These are some solid dudes."
Lead Singer, Guitarist, Ether Circus