Before the Dwight Twilley Band, there was Oister. Featuring Twilley and his musical partner Phil Seymour, the duo was a precursor to the Twilley Band, the outfit in which the two young Tulsa musicians cut their teeth and began shaping their melodic pop sound. “My partner Phil Seymour and I, when we were kids…we were kind of Simon and Garfunkel guys,” Twilley remarked when we spoke with him in 2014. “We had these pretty little songs and pretty little harmonies. We lived in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the middle of the country. We had a little collection of tapes and we thought we should have somebody from a record company listen to these. Maybe somebody would like ‘em, you know?”
Chances are people will dig the duo’s nascent sound, now that HoZac Records is set to release Oister: Pre-Dwight Twilley Band (1973-74), a two-LP archival set of Oister recordings on May 12. While a few of the songs eventually made it onto proper Twilley albums, most of the recordings have remained unreleased until now.
“Dwight Twilley and Phil Seymour met around 1967 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, at an afternoon screening of A Hard Day’s Night,” write the folks at the web’s preeminent Cowsills tribute site. “Dwight had taken his kid brother and Phil had taken a neighbor, each for the same reason: it was ‘bring a kid and get in free day’ at the theatre, and both were Beatle fans. Being the two tallest people in line, they noticed each other, talked, and discovered they had a mutual friend, who had just moved away. It was one of the most fortuitous meetings since the church picnic at which Paul McCartney met John Lennon.”