Jacksonville band Fort Stories gets tropical for the Beach Boys

Ellie Strube

Fort Stories having a good ole' time. Photo by Randy Rataj.
Fort Stories having a good ole’ time. Photo by Randy Rataj.

As the original Beach Boys played right around the corner at the Florida Theatre on Monday night, Jacksonville’s folk and indie band, Fort Stories, played a cover show of a few Beach Boys songs at Burro Bar.

The band dressed in tropical blouses that made the audience anticipate a hula dance-off later in the evening.

Once the amps were plugged and the mics were checked, the band played tunes like “Fun, Fun, Fun,” and “Wouldn’t it be Nice.” Fort Stories played the covers in their own eclectic style while exemplifying their unique, folky vibe.

The lead vocalist, Jesse Brantman, got groovy on stage as he danced around, at one point acting as if he were riding a surfboard. It got the crowd going.

The Beach Boys — an iconic rock-band reflecting a youth culture of surfing, cars and romance — are important to Fort Stories.

“It’s classic American music. I grew up on it. It reminds me of growing up as a kid with my dad, driving around in the car. And, he loved the Beach Boys,” said guitarist Jack Mock.

The group were having a good ole’ time on stage, and they said they hope to play more Beach Boys covers in the future.

“I think we’ll probably keep one or two of the songs in our pockets for the set,” said Mock.

After the covers, the band played a few songs of their own, which really showcased who they are and their passion for music.

As far as covers go, the band has played a few others, like “Don’t Let Me Down,” by the Beatles. However, they don’t want to be known as just a cover band.

“Cover songs are difficult, because you run the line of being an original band,” said guitarist and vocalist Dean Winter.

Later, they hope to play a few other covers. Winters said they might do a Bob Dylan song.

As for now, Fort Stories will continue to play at small, intimate venues like Burro Bar — but maybe without the Hawaiian shirts.

Email Ellie Strube at [email protected]