Portland's Coolest New Wedding Band

Combining soulful vocals and harmonies reminiscent of Mumford and Sons, Portland’s newest and coolest wedding banjo band, the Junebugs, breathe new life into old favorites and radio hits. Decked out in suspenders, spectacles and bow ties, the Junebugs formed as a three-piece in 2014 with a pared-down sound featuring a guitar, banjo and drums. “We don’t consider ourselves a cover band, even though we write only 10 percent of the music we play,” says singer and banjo player Moses Barrett, “we’re applying the jazz idea of ‘playing the standard’ to the American songbook.”

It’s hard not to want to get up and dance to their countrified version of Blackstreet’s “No Diggity” or Lorde’s “Royals” complete with banjo solos. A wedding package with the Junebugs includes learning a new song of the soon-to-be newlyweds’ request, which is customarily a couple’s first dance song. (Their rendition of Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” rocked a recent wedding.) As evidence of their popularity, weddings are booking about six months out. And for the Junebugs, the feeling is mutual. “When you knock it out of the park,” says Barrett, “it’s a really special feeling.”