Combining humor, self-reflection and original songs, “The Bats” will be swarming the Knolls of Oxford to entertain residents.
The band, who celebrated its 10th anniversary in October, originated as a group of women over the age of 40. Its name was inspired by the cliché “the old bats.”
The group has since grown to five women and three “brave” men, according to band member and Miami University fine arts professor, Susan Thomas.
The band writes songs about the aging process, such as “Aging Lament,” with lyrics that point out that “getting lucky in the parking lot means finding our car.”
“It all relates to the changes that happen as you get older,” Thomas said.
The show at the Knolls, a retirement village one mile outside of Oxford with 160 people in independent living, is at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17. Vicky Truxel, the social director for the Knolls, said she plans many on and off-campus events for the residents every month and when a friend gave her The Bats’ CD, she decided to try and bring the group to Oxford.
“I knew out residents would love it,” Truxel said.
The Bats is a member of the Kentucky Performing Arts Directory and has established a regular following in Lexington. The band fills its regular 130-people venue, Natasha’s, to capacity during each performances. The members started doing a regular standing gig with three sets, including a diner set, a funny set and a dance set. Thomas said they get a feel for the audience and perform their songs accordingly.
“I hope audiences tell others about it,” Thomas said. “I want them to leave and share the CD and say ‘here is something that is so unique I have to share it.'”
Thomas said listeners can relate to the material. She said the band tries to make its shows interactive so it can create banter with their audience.
“We establish a repertoire with the audience,” said. “We open-up, talk to them and feel them out on where to go with all of it.”
Thomas said the band keeps the audience engaged by laughing at themselves and staying loose, while focusing on the music.
“They just have a great time,” Thomas said. “This is about having fun.”
Truxel said she plans events to keep the residents young and busy.
“The more involved I keep them, the healthier it is for them,” she said.
The event is open to the public and tickets are $10 at the door of The Knolls Auditorium.