if it weren’t for the instruments they carry in their publicity photos — fiddles, mandolin and flat-top guitar — a casual observer would have trouble believing Jypsi is both a band of gifted siblings and the latest thing in Nashville chic.
With heavy eye makeup, Bowery coiffures, bare body parts, sexy pouts and poses, the foursome looks more like a glam-punk ABBA revival band after a night of debauchery than the Rische kids from Illinois (via Missouri and North Carolina). Nevertheless, Jypsi is poised for stardom under the aegis of Dixie Chicks producer Blake Chancey and the RCA Records label.
“We don’t dress country, but that’s the music we’ve been playing all our lives,” Jypsi fiddler and singer Amber-Dawn Rische said recently.
On Monday, she’ll join her brother Frank (another Jypsi) and her boyfriend Bobby Nicholas — a Toronto-born, Nashville-based guitarist for the likes of Patti Loveless and Terri Clark — to give Toronto country music fans a pre-launch taste of the Jypsi sound and style. They’re sharing the bill with Toronto country acts General Store and Laura Heighway.
At 25, Amber-Dawn is the eldest of the family quartet. Frank plays guitar and sings lead, and sisters Lillie Mae and Scarlett play fiddle and mandolin respectively.
“People think it must be hard playing in a band with your brother and sisters, but it comes naturally to us. It’s what we've always done.”
• Jypsi will be at The Silver Dollar Room, 486 Spadina Ave., on Monday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door.