A good night for the Goodnights

Local band JD Eicher & the Goodnights released its new album, “Into Place,” Sept. 10. Photo courtesy of JD Eicher & the Goodnights.
Local band JD Eicher & the Goodnights released its new album, “Into Place,” Sept. 10. Photo courtesy of JD Eicher & the Goodnights.

JD Eicher & the Goodnights, a local area band, has had great success with the release of its third CD, “Into Place.” The CD is the third in a trilogy of records under Grammy-nominated producer Dustin Burnett.

The band, made up of JD Eicher (vocals and guitar), Ben Portz (keys), Jim Merhaut (bass), and Dylan Kollat (drums/percussion), has been together since 2007. The group has performed with many large acts and has been featured in many magazines and news articles.

Lead vocalist JD Eicher said that having these opportunities opened up many doors for the group.

“Opening up for these big name acts was such a wonderful experience,” JD said, “We were able to open up for the Dave Matthews Band, Anberlin, Coldplay, and others. You don’t get to do that every day.”

One of their songs has been used as a teaser for the Virgin America Airlines movie “Departure Date,” and Alternative Addiction magazine has named them one of the top ten unsigned bands of the year.

Merhaut said he is very pleased with the success of the band.

“When I joined, it was mostly just a summer activity — something to do for fun,” Merhaut said. “I never expected it to go this far. I knew we had talent, but this is something else.”

JD Eicher and the Goodnights describes their sound as pop/rock with a light bubbly sound — something different from the usual head-banging punk rock bands from the area.

JD Eicher says the group owes the majority of their success to their loyal fan base, both locally and nationally.

“We aren’t a typical band that comes out of Youngstown,” he said. “We are very mainstream pop, and we have been lucky enough to find supporters of what we do.”

JD Eicher does many acoustic solo shows to promote himself and the band as far west as Idaho and as far east as Vermont.

Traveling for the shows is hard work, but having a strong support system at home is something that keeps the band going — especially thanks to JD’s parents, Dan and Peggy Eicher.

Dan Eicher says that regardless of what his son does, they will always be behind him.

“JD was the valedictorian of his high school. Peggy and I had always envisioned him going to law school, but when he told us he was pursuing music, we were supportive,” Dan Eicher said. “We know this is what he wants to do, and we will always stand by him.”

The band is very close knit, especially for how long they have been together. JD said that one of his biggest supporters is fellow band member Merhaut.

“I was his first guitar teacher.” Merhaut said. “I watched him perform his first song the day he graduated. He has tremendous talent and an unbelievable drive. I am proud to call him my boss and I think he is a wonderful guy.”

“Into Place” was released Sept. 10 and is available on iTunes and as a CD in many local stores. More information on tour dates and news on JD Eicher & the Goodnights is available on their Facebook page and at jdeicherandthegoodnights.com.