The Six Foot Poles are a five-piece band that plays vintage
rock and roll with a Motown twist. The musical knowledge and
experience of the Poles spans five decades and has accumulated over 100
years of combined experience playing in various local bands. The
Six Foot Poles have played together for over 15 years and includes
three brothers, Dave, Mark and Mat Brzezinski (all over six feet tall),
and their “brother from another mother,” Theo Smith, and the "five foot
pole", Joelene Piatt Brzezinski. Mat handles the drum kit as
Dave, Mark and Theo all trade off on guitar and bass duties. Theo
can also add various keyboards to the mix whenever the song calls for
it. All of the members of the band sing, the majority being the
harmonies of Mark and Theo with Joelene as a featured vocalist.
The Poles enthusiasm for classic and eclectic rock songs reflect their
various influences, including the Beatles, the Stones, the Smithereens,
Smokey Robinson, the Doors, Kinks, Moody Blues as well as obscure
one-hit wonders from the 1960's and 1970's. When the band calls
on Joelene, they expand their range to include Jefferson Airplane,
Melissa Etheridge and beyond.
So where did the Six Foot Poles come from?
I'm glad you asked.
All of us have had various musical experiences before drifting together
as the Six Foot Poles.
Dave is a veteran of the Sixties, where he started out as a "roadie"
for many local bands in the Detroit Western suburbs, probably because
he drove an old 1961 Ford Econoline van. After a series of small
bands, he drifted off into college and married life until he was
drafted by his younger brothers, Martin and Mat, to play guitar in
their Six band and Ivan Pavlov's Salivation Army.
Mark got his start early in the Fred Jam Band, which led to a string of
bands and hanging out with some of the great local musicians. He
even had a short stint on the staff of one of Fred Smith's early solo
bands. Mark's interest in theater led him to parts in musicals
and ultimately meeting his future wife, Joelene.
Mat was the drums in the Six band and Ivan Pavlov's Salivation
Army. Ultimately, he hooked up with local legend Jim "Largebeat"
Gertz in Ann Arbor and has performed in most of the many incarnations
of the Largebeat bands right up to the present.
Theo has played extensively in the Detroit area in various bands,
starting on bass guitar, but expanding out to add keyboards and guitar
to his many talents.
Joelene grew up in the theatre singing and doing ventriloquism, but was
also influenced by her older brother's many rock bands.
Although Mat, Mark and David were brothers, they have only infrequently
played all together until the Six Foot Poles were formed. Mark
then knew Theo through his day job and adding Theo and Joelene greatly
expanded the musical scope of the band. The Six Foot Poles have
performed primarily around the Ann Arbor area in recent years.