Pocketschwa originally formed in Morgantown, WV in 2001 when Chris Kasper and Colin Helb shared a house. They did a couple gigs as a pseudo-acoustic duo doing Lionel Ritchie songs (well, “All Night Long” at least). They found a multi-instrumentalist named Jared Roy to play drums and did a few more gigs. After a few months, Chris and Colin moved to the Manayunk section of Philadelphia. They quickly connected with Chris’s high friend Mike Hannigan. Mike ran the Philadelphonic jam sessions at The Kyber. Soon, Mike and drummer Michael “Slick” Leibowitz began playing together as PocketSchwa.
Their songs were overly-complex, riddled with inside jokes (“Wonton Won Five” means 1-215, like the beginning of a Philly phone number… and that’s the number of hits that leads off the song; “The Last Loogah” is a reference to a terrible movie called Big Man on Campus), and, at times, pretty demanding to play. Rhys Herrman recorded a lot of their shows… we should do something with those.
They had a bunch of fun for about two years.