The DonkeysView In iTunes
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Taking their cues from bands like Pavement, the Grateful Dead, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, the Donkeys craft melodic country-rock songs inspired by their state's warm weather and relaxed pace. High school friends Timothy DeNardo, Anthony Lukens, and Sam Sprague first played together as teenagers, and Jessie Gulati joined the latter two musicians in a band named the Moon and Sixpence soon after graduation. The musicians eventually banded together as the Donkeys, combining a melodic foundation with elements of classic rock, country, and power pop. The group signed with Antenna Farm Records and issued a self-titled debut in 2004. Leaving Antenna Farm several years later, the Donkeys eventually settled with the Texas-based label Dead Oceans before issuing their 2008 follow-up, Living on the Other Side. Born with Stripes arrived three years later, downplaying the band's twangy past in favor of laid-back pop songs. Fourth album Ride the Black Wave surfaced in 2014, its breezy Pacific Ocean pop vibrations offering further tributes to the sunshine and surrealness of their home state of California.