GUM Brings A Bold New Sound To Edmond

Many bands’ styles are easy to guess from their names – not so with GUM. Their music must be listened to first, and even then, it’s not easy to pigeonhole the Edmond quintet’s sound as simply one thing or another.

It’s garage rock, but there’s a piano. It definitely owes something to The Beatles, but there’s something current about it, as well. Lyrically, GUM strives for something like melodic storytelling, rather than just reciting words that rhyme.

The band, headed for the Wakarusa Music Festival in Arkansas in June, is made up of Joe Bello (vocals/guitar), Levi Bello (guitar), Taylor Dragoo (bass), John Baber (piano) and Sam Bray (drums). They’re all UCO students, except John, who attends classes at OU. GUM formed in November, but its members have been in a variety of other bands and have jammed with each other for years.

“Now that I’m a bit older, I understand what it takes,” Joe says. “After watching it all happen so many times, you get to asking, ‘What is it going to take for it all to come together?’”

The members say they have a better vision this time than they had with their earlier bands. They understand
that to be successful, they have to be patient with each other and commit to realistic goals, like scheduling
twice-weekly practice dates, trying hard to make the best music they can and keeping momentum without getting ahead of themselves.

GUM recorded a few songs for their Web site,, in a premature stage of the band, just to get