IN THE BEGINNING
The band was formed in 2016 by Jessica and Ken who shared the same vision about the type of music they wanted to play and what the band should be about. They wanted to be a band that people would come and dance and party with their friends to. After going through more than a few different players it was only when the right lineup formed that the name Ella Mental And The StraitJackets came about and was instantly adopted, although one member kept holding out for 4 Dicks And A Chick. With a penchant for modern rock and a sprinkling of classic pop and funk they found their niche and continue building their repertoire and having fun and making friends along the way.
MEET THE BAND
ELLA AKA JESSICA:
As a shy, mild mannered, well behaved, oldest child, Jessica grew up thinking that responsibility was the meaning of life. Suppressed by authority in a judgmental society, she grew up as any good girl should. A law abiding citizen, educated, employed and home by 11. As the years went on and life gave her lemons, she continued to persevere. Meanwhile… each new responsibility that was piled on her was fuel added to an imminent wildfire that would spread in all directions. …Later, Jessica would find herself, through a series of unfortunate events, compelled to answer a mysterious signal. Like a magnet drawn by an undeniable force or some bat-shaped cut out, taped to a flashlight, To the City of Champions and into the arms of the Straitjackets. Through the crack of Stixx’s thunder, the thump of B-Rad’s bass, Chopper’s unique funky rhythm and Killer’s metallic Rock, an elemental fire ignited within her and Ella emerged. From decades of repressed shenanigans and mischief, Ella explodes to life whenever this league of extraordinary gentlemen unite. Oh yeah, she sings too. Playing all of your favorite tunes, from all of your favorite times, Ella Mental and the Straitjackets will rock you with their nostalgic exuberance and general awesomeness.
CHOPPER AKA KEN:
As a child he was dropped off by a spaceship and landed in the vegetable patch of a kind woman who fed and dressed him once she figured out how to pry off his aluminum suit. He grew up mimicking Elvis and was the only 4th grader with sideburns. His dream of being a rock n’ roller came true one Christmas when his adopted mother said he could have any guitar he wanted….from the Sears catalog. Straight out of high school he hit the road with his band only to realize a few short months later that sleeping in the same room with 5 other guys with poor hygiene and a penchant for beer was not a wise career move. He quit the road but always kept a hand in music one way or another working with many well known Canadian artists in the 80’s. One day he saw a woman standing at the front of a stage at an outdoor concert and knew it was love at first sight, even if he was only looking at her butt. It turned out she was singing for a band playing that weekend and soon they became fast friends, and then playing in the same band until one day they realized they wanted something different. With a few friends, they began their journey to the promised land, adoring fans, free pizza, and exposure!
JESSE LEE STIXX AKA JESSE LEE STIXX:
Many people are curious as to who the man hiding behind the drum kit is, and for the longest time even his bandmates didn’t know as they were instructed not to look at or talk to him which made things difficult, but his talent was unmistakable! Turns out he was a hippy who liked playing in the nude! Through an exchange of notes they convinced him to put pants on and soon found out he was funny as f*ck and actually a pretty snappy dresser to boot, what a shame seeing as how he sits behind the drum kit. He told the band that he had been around the Edmonton music scene all his life and had played with some notable bands who opened for even more notable bands! Aunt Edna’s Spoon Collection and Slak Jaw Lemon And The Hurtin’ Units to name a few. With impeccable manners, oozing style and charm, he has built up a legion of adoring female fans, and did I mention that he can cook too? Now retired from his day job, he spends his time teaching percussion, playing with Ella Mental, and being addicted to the home shopping network.
KILLER AKA JAMES:
After spending most of his childhood figuring out new ways to bolt from the principal’s office, “Killer” as often referred to by his band mates, has remained cursed with ‘if there’s trouble, he’s going to find it’. He’s since mastered the ability to convince people that he is in fact NOT Kevin Bacon, and now he understands that rocking out on guitar has helped curb his need to find trouble as it has given him an outlet to release his destructive energy on stage as a badass.
~EDITOR’S NOTE: plays guitar, Canadian, denies he’s Kevin Bacon, and bears a striking resemblance to Bryan Adams….hmmmmmm.
B-RAD AKA BRAD:
It’s said that B-Rad is in the witness protection program, but given that he still looks exactly the same as his 6th grade school picture complete with goatee we find it hard to believe. We can say with certainty that this recent Saskatchewan transplant has jumped in with both feet to the Edmonton and Alberta music scene. His roots are in rock radio, though oddly he played in country bands until one day when a falling stage light bonked him on the head. In his delirium he saw a vision of Bon Scott calling to him….”Let there be rock” he said. And lo unto B-Rad a new identity was born, he shucked his shit kickers, burned his straw hat, and got a tattoo! Even though he’s in Alberta, he still plays with his other band The 100th Meridian, a tribute to Canada’s own Tragically Hip. B-Rad puts the thump and funk in Ella’s trunk and keeps the booty moving.