Whether you refer to them as Stop Light Observations or simply SLO, this six piece, southern rock inspired band, is a true trail blazer as it grows in popularity and travels the country, moving beyond their Charleston, South Carolina roots. They play a unique style of Alternative Rock influenced by Indie Rock, Motown, Hiphop, Folk, Revival, Americana, Garage, and Arena Rock.
● JohnKeith Culbreth Piano, Synth, SongWriter, Guitar
● Wyatt Garey Lead Guitar, Synth, Trumpet
● Coleman Sawyer Bass, Banjo, Fiddle, StandUp Bass
● Louis Duffie Guitar, Synth
● Luke Withers Drummer
● Will Blackburn Lead Vocals
The band's name comes from the heart of their music, a desire to SLO it down and actually see life. Waiting on a red light at an intersection gives many people a minute to relax, think about their day and enjoy the moment. JohnKeith Culbreth, the band’s songwriter and composer, wanted Stop Light Observations to be that moment for anyone who listened to their music.
“I had a dream that night where some presence came to me and told me that Will Blackburn would sing for my band. Is it a little ridiculous and cliche sounding...maybe. But the truth, absolutely.” JohnKeith Will Blackburn, the band’s lead singer, gives light to their music and brings it all together. His voice adds character to the stories told in their songs and acts as a foundation for the band to build on. Will says his singing was a gift he’s always had inside, “...singing has come surprisingly natural and more recently a real passion.” This multitalent group has the experience and knowledge to be a great success. Additionally, their true love for music can be heard in all of their music and seen in the sheer number of instruments they play. It is this dedication to craft that really sets SLO apart. JohnKeith Culbreth writes music and composes for the band, but he is also a talented pianist. Louis Duffle plays guitar, showing his immense dedication to the band with the distance he travels to practice. Wyatt Garey plays lead guitar and synthesizer while Luke Withers is the band’s drummer. Coleman Sawyer not only keeps the band’s beat with Luke Withers as Stop Light Observations' bassist, but he is also a skilled violinist. Coleman attributes his success and musical versatility to his upbringing, “Music has been my life since elementary school, and I can credit that to my parents. They have influenced my playing and broadened my horizons in ways that would not have been possible without them, I owe them everything that I have done and will do in my life.” Coleman Sawyer
Being surrounded by music since childhood, each member of Stop Light Observations holds multiple responsibilities. A lot of the band's success can be credited to the basic fact they have talent; but what really makes them popular is their raw passion for music. This shines through each of their songs.
Growing into adulthood together has created a strong bond between the members of Stop Light Observations. They have been together since their mid teens and all confess it is unimaginable to believe they’ve stayed together since that time a total of four years. At the same time, they are ecstatic with the band’s success and prosperous future. Louis Duffle admits, “...no I didn't think we'd be playing music like this when we first started back in the day.”
JohnKeith Culbreth says, “[In the beginning] Finding 6 guys that are 16 years old and staying together through a time of no popularity, no shows, and no real fans; all the way until we are 20 and then pushing the pedal to the metal and staying true to each other and our hearts and following and creating a product of passion that creates a response is by far our biggest accomplishment.”he Stop Light Observations love the spirit of performing and creating music, Wyatt Garey speaks to the magic he feels when performing on stage, “I am more comfortable on stage than anywhere else. I am naturally a more reserved introvert who doesn't really like being in crowds, but when I get on stage I feel like I'm somebody else. I lose all of the anxiety, the personal problems of my life go away, and it's just me and my guitar.” Although the music has been the only tangible product of this band’s ongoing legacy, the members live for the memories and friendships that have developed along the way. Their music is a product of these memories, a good feeling that brings a smile to your face. Culbreth says, “We are all best friends and we are not 6 random musicians in a band, we are all deeply connected in one way or another and are all each others best friends and have been the whole time.”
Stop Light Observations will continue to grow as they travel the country and gain fans through their hard work and exposure. These friends are no doubt serious about performing their music for their fans and gaining more followers everyday. Fans of Stop light Observations love the cool vibe of the southern rock inspired sound. They live for the moment, as the band members do, and enjoy all of the opportunities and benefits along the way of their own personal journey. JohnKeith Culbreth knows Stop Light Observations' fan support is the band’s lifeblood,“...every song I write the fans are in my mind and without the fans there would absolutely be no new material, and that our fans 100% shape our sound and make SLO who we are today, and we owe it all to you and can't wait to take ya'll along for the ride into the future of SLO.”