Band performs at storied House of Blues

Michael Tortorich
Performing at the House of Blues are, from left, Torrence Thomas, Thurman Thomas III, Brandon Singleton and David “Dee-1” Augustine.

Ascension Parish based band 2nd Story has enjoyed several firsts lately.

The group consists of Dutchtown High School graduates who have made a name for themselves playing such notable gigs as the House of Blues in New Orleans.

“It was a great show,” said Torrence Thomas, who plays bass in the group. “There has been a lot of history there. Any big name you can think of has played there.”

Thomas’ twin brother, Thurman Thomas III, plays lead guitar in the band. Both went to Dutchtown, and both are students at Southern University in Baton Rouge. The brothers are 19.

Daigre Lipoma, who was a classmate of the twins at Dutchtown, plays drums. The three played soccer together and graduated in 2008. Lipoma is currently a student at LSU.

The band’s name came from the second-story loft at Lipoma’s house. The band has used the loft as a practice space.

Brandon Singletary, 21, plays keyboard and also attends LSU.

The band has performed with David Augustine, who goes by Dee-1.

Augustine joined the band Oct. 28 on the House of Blues stage.

The venue has a wall of fame that features such names as Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash and Santana. Bands like Better than Ezra and the Foo Fighters.

Dee-1 is a 23-year-old area rapper known for his work young people. He recently left his job as a middle school teacher in Baton Rouge to concentrate more on his music career.

Dee-1 has teamed up with Dr. Rani Whitfield, M.D., who is widely-known as “Tha Hip-Hop doc.”

Earlier this year the duo spent time in Donaldsonville at Lowery Intermediate School mentoring students through their music.

Their positive message has landed them on various media outlets, such as CNN and Billboard magazine.

Dee-1, who grew up in New Orleans East, released his second album, “David & Goliath,” in April.

With the help of Dee-1, 2nd Story has gained lots of exposure, Torrence Thomas said.

“It was a very good show for us,” he said, referring to the House of Blues performance.

Just as Dee-1 is not the typical rapper in that he projects a positive message, 2nd Story is not a band that can be pigeonholed. Their unique sound does not fit into one specific genre. They have influences in everything from hip-hop to rock to R&B.

“Basically anything popular,” Torrence Thomas said. “It’s the stuff people like to hear.”

Now the band is poised to branch out and bring their sound beyond the Baton Rouge and New Orleans areas.

“Things have been on the up and up,” Torrence Thomas said.

2nd Story performed at the House of Blues in New Orleans Oct. 28. Shown in front of the wall of fame are, from left, Daigre Lipoma, Thurman Thomas III, Brandon Singleton and Torrence Thomas.