We are starting a trend creating a series of articles spotlighting the talents, gifts and interests of Mills associates. Mills recognizes that without the hard work and dedication of the many people who work with and for us, we would not be where we are today. With that, we hope to extend our praise and thanks. And, we hope to help you get to know them a little bit better.
So without further ado, meet Joe Randoll: Assistant Manager of Tiger Village Apartments by day; Joe “The Lovebug” supreme keyboardist of Dance Floor Riot by night. I’ve seen him perform with Dance Floor Riot a couple of times and had the opportunity, before their show last weekend in Kirkwood, to snag them for a quick introduction:
We know that Joe is energetic and charismatic, funny yet professional and an overall amazing asset to our team in Columbia, MO but here are some cool things about Joe that we didn’t know:
1. How did you meet the other members of Dance Floor Riot and decide to begin a band?
I used to work in a leasing office with Mike (Lead Vocals). One night we were hanging out at a local venue and he thought it would be fun to start a band. He knew I played piano so I jumped at the opportunity! We then added his best friend Brandon (Lead Vocals) and his cousin Dan (Bass). We still needed a drummer and a guitarist so we did the next logical thing and put an ad on Craigslist. Seth (Drums) found us and we immediately added him. To round it out, Seth recommended his friend Eddie for the guitar spot and the rest is history!
2. How long have you been playing keyboard and do you play other instruments as well?
I started taking piano lessons around 3rd grade and stuck with them through Junior High. I then started developing my ear to pick out more contemporary songs that people could sing along to: Styx, Journey, REO Speedwagon, etc. I kept playing piano but in High School I was also on the drum line in the marching band. After I graduated, I took several instrument proficiency classes at the University of Florida. I became decent at playing a few brass and string instruments but my passion has always been piano.
3. DFR plays a lot of pop music. Is that what all of you listen to or why did you choose the pop route?
To be honest, all of us have a soft spot for pop but it’s not our favorite by any means. We all listen to a wide variety of genres including classic rock, rap, metal, funk, hip hop, R&B, blues, and indie rock. This actually benefits us because we can always add a little something different to each song we play. We decided to play mainly pop music because that’s what people like to dance to! We wanted to have a packed dance floor from song #1 and playing Kesha, Lady Gaga, and Usher tend to get the people out there.
4. Who would you consider your musical influences?
I have a ton of respect for anyone who can play/sing their own songs. A few people who immediately jump to mind are pretty obvious for a piano player to want to emulate: Ben Folds, Billy Joel, Elton John, and Dennis DeYoung (Styx).
5. If you could jam with any one famous musician, who would it be and why?
Ben Folds would be AMAZING to sit in with. I can’t hold a candle to him as far as ability goes, but it would be a dream come true to play a few tunes with him.
6. Who has been your favorite musician/band that DFR has performed with?
We were really honored to have St. Louis’ own Steve Ewing (Lead singer of The Urge) as an opener for a show at Sky Music Lounge. He is such a phenomenal performer that it was a humbling experience to have him on the same stage as us.
7. I heard you have a couple of songs the band has written. Does DFR plan to ever begin permanently writing and performing their own songs…and maybe go on tour?
We only have 1 or 2 original songs but hopefully that will change soon. We’re still trying to find our unique niche and sound that’ll make us stand out from other bands in St. Louis. As far as touring goes… we can dream right? Shameless plug for my drummer Seth. He is also the drummer for the original indie rock band “Media Ghost”. Check ‘em out online (facebook.com/MediaGhostMediaGhost) and enjoy!
8. Obviously Dance Floor Riot is the best cover band in St. Louis, but if you had to pick another great local band to recommend St. Louisans to check out, who would it be and why?
There are quite a few bands around that are worth checking out, but a true stand out is Trixie Delight. They’re absolutely awesome!!! Kelly Wild has such an amazing voice and range that they’ll captivate you from the very first song. They’ve been playing all over St. Louis since 2001. I HIGHLY recommend checking them out!
9. I noticed several members of the band have nicknames on the website. How did yours become ‘The Lovebug’?
Actually my fiancée Jen came up with that one. Mike happened to overhear it and ran with it. I’m really a big softy at heart and the name just stuck. We tried to give everyone a nickname but by far the best one is our bass player Dan Strain AKA Dance Train.
10. In keeping with the last question tradition: A shout out for Mills Properties – What interests you most about the work that you do?
I absolutely LOVE working with and helping people! Mills has been such a breath of fresh air to my working career that I honestly can’t imagine being employed by a better organization. The way they encourage and believe in their employees is a quality many other businesses should take note of. There’s rarely a time when you’ll see me at Tiger Village without a smile on my face.
You can find our more about Dance Floor Riot and where they’ll be performing next at DanceFloorRiot.com.
Here’s a little video of them performing at Harrah’s: