"Rebel Stage Spotlight" is an OnMilwaukee-exclusive series of interviews with bands that will perform on The Rebel Stage during Summerfest. The Rebel Stage – located along the lakefront, directly to the east of the Harley-Davidson Roadhouse stage – is a completely independent venue that hosts more than 90 bands during the Big Gig and is staffed entirely by volunteers. Rebel Stage manager, Eoin McCarthy, hand picked the line-up from more than 2,000 submissions.
This probably does not come as a surprise, but there aren’t actually 17 sisters in Seventeen Sisters. However, the real surprise is that the band is comprised solely of five (FIVE!) sisters.
And one brother.
Sarah Scarbrough-Evans and Angel Scarbrough-Prabhat primarily contribute vocals; Gracie Scarbrough is on the drums; Faith and (brother) Cecil Scarbrough play guitar and Hannah Scarbrough is the bassist. All of the sisters contribute vocals and fill in on instruments as needed.
Seventeen Sisters will play The Rebel Stage on Thursday, July 7 at 7:30 p.m.
"This will be our first year and we are super excited and honored to be a part of the Rebel Stage," says Scarbrough-Evans.
OnMilwaukee: What do you like about playing on the Rebel Stage and why is it an asset for Summerfest?
Sarah Scarbrough-Evans: We love the Rebel Stage because it showcases and exemplifies the very root of music. The Rebel Stage is the heart of musicians, it encompasses all genres and all walks of life. It's a place for people to gather to share and hear new music that they might not otherwise discover. It's a place for all people. It’s raw, honest and passionate about its music. Eoin, Jim, and all the guys of Whiskey of the Damned are so great. We really appreciate what they are doing for the original music scene.
How long have you been together and how would you describe your music?
Because we are all siblings, we've been playing and performing together for just about forever. We are originally from the deep south of Mississippi. Hurricane Katrina blew us up to Champaign, Ill. after we lost our home, and we eventually migrated to Chicago. Growing up in the South we were exposed to a lot of blues, soul and gospel music, as well as "oldies music" of the ‘50s and ‘60s and classic rock. All of those styles became part of our soul in one big melting pot which naturally flows out through to our style of music. The music we write is very old school, stripped down, vintage feeling rock & roll, peppered with blues / soul /gospel. We write about the things we care about that help make the world a better place for all, our experiences of trial and triumph and a little bit of everything in between.
Which bands are you looking forward to seeing at Summerfest this year?
Oh goodness! There are too many to list! We seriously wish we could see every band on the Rebel Stage; we've been going over the list enjoying discovering all these great new bands.
Where else is your band playing in the near future?
After Summerfest, we'll be back in Chicago at the Tonic Room on July 15 and in Indianapolis at Birdy's Live on July 23. All while we’ll be getting our new EP ready for release, and gearing up for a two-week tour of the South the first two weeks of August.
What's your favorite thing to eat or drink at Summerfest?
Well this will be our first, but we definitely love our food so we are pretty excited to discover what our favorite will be. I think we're gonna need to try as many things as possible to discover our favorite. It’ll be a tough job but somebody's got to do it.
Read more about The Rebel Stage here.
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.