The Crane Wives bring unique sound

Published 5:24 pm Thursday, February 13, 2014

Submitted photo The Crane Wives will be playing at The Livery in Benton Harbor on Feb. 22. (Submitted photo)

Submitted photo
The Crane Wives will be playing at The Livery in Benton Harbor on Feb. 22. (Submitted photo)

BENTON HARBOR — Housed in a century-old horse stable at 190 5th St. since 2005, The Livery provides a daily gathering place where friends can enjoy hand-forged microbrews and tasty dishes from their kitchen.

The establishment has been named among the Top 100 Brewpubs in the World for 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 and among the Top 100 Brewers in the World for 2008 and 2009 by

It is also known as a great venue for music lovers to enjoy local and regional bands on weekends.

One band that will be playing at The Livery on Feb. 22 is The Crane Wives.

The Crane Wives, hailing from Grand Rapids, are no strangers to the stage at The Livery.

“The Crane Wives are an awesome act,” said Meredith George, booking and promotions manager at The Livery. “They first came here in the summer, and this will be their third appearance at The Livery.”

The band is currently touring the Midwest, playing shows in Michigan, Illinois and Indiana.

The band describes their music as a type of indie-folk that defies musical stereotypes. They count among their influences Fleet Foxes, Mumford and Sons, Bon Iver, Elliott Smith, My Morning Jacket and The Decemberists.

Formed in August 2010, the band takes its name from an old Japanese folk tale that is somewhat reminiscent of “The Goose that Laid the Golden Egg.” In fact, one of their influences, the Decemberists also have a 2006 album entitled “The Crane Wife.”

Already, The Crane Wives have recorded two albums of their own, “Safe Ship, Harbored,” released in 2011, and “The Fool in her Wedding Gown,” released in 2012. Both of them are available on iTunes, Amazon and CD Baby. The

Samples of their music can also be found on their website at

“They’ve got two awesome female lead singers along with a back-up band that does three-part harmonies,” George said.

The five members of the band include Kate Pillsbury on vocals, guitar, ukulele, and percussion; Emilee Petersmark on vocals, guitar, and ukulele; Dan Rickabus on drums, percussion, and vocals; Ben Zito on bass guitar, and Tom Gunnels on banjo and percussion.

“They’re a lot of fun. As a younger band—they’re all in their mid-20s or so—they’ve got a lot of energy on stage,” George said. “I’m really looking forward to this show.”

The Crane Wives will take the stage at 9 p.m., and admission is $10. The Livery’s kitchen will stay open until 10 p.m. for those who wish to order dinner or appetizers off their menu. More information can be obtained by calling (269) 925-8760 or by visiting their website at