Ask The Locals: Rebekah Pulley

click to enlarge Ask The Locals: Rebekah Pulley - Carrie Waite
Carrie Waite
Ask The Locals: Rebekah Pulley

click to enlarge Ask The Locals: Rebekah Pulley - Carrie Waite
Carrie Waite
Ask The Locals: Rebekah Pulley

For more than two decades, St. Pete resident Rebekah Pulley has helped shape Tampa Bay’s reputation as a haven for alternative country sounds, and spreading that gospel as one of the area’s hardest-touring independent musicians.

Born in Alaska and raised in rural Texas, Rebekah came to Pinellas County in 1991, and started playing the area’s open mics three or four years later. Now, she’s got a 21-year-old daughter, Jasmine, a partner in music and crime, Rob Pastore, with whom she’s shared the last 12 years, and a national reputation as an underground singer-songwriter on the verge of much bigger things. She hit the road especially hard for her fifth full-length CD, 2014’s Tralala , and is currently working on her next recording project.

“The place I miss the most when I’m on the road is my kitchen,” she says with a laugh. “I miss home cooking. I’m not a super-great cook, but Rob’s Italian, so he taught me how to make Italian food, and now I’m pretty good at that.”

Favorite place to enjoy live music: HIDEAWAY CAFE & RECORDING STUDIO. “I don’t really go to big, loud, elbow-to-elbow places. Hideaway is a listening room, I love that. You can go there and actually hear all the words, and people tell stories. I like going there for the same reason I like playing there. It’s also one of these places where the owner comes up and hugs you.”

Favorite sushi: HOOK’S SUSHI BAR & THAI FOOD. “Hook’s is freakin’ awesome. Their salmon is consistently the best of all the places I’ve been to around here. Their spring rolls are amazing.”

Favorite beer garden: ALE & THE WITCH. “Brett [Andress], the owner, always has awesome stuff there. If we go downtown for a movie or just to hang around, we always end up there. and there’s always a band playing, which is cool.”

Favorite funky secondhand shop: ARTPOOL. “They’ve got a lot of great records, lots of really cool funky stuff. And there are a lot of great clothes. I don’t really buy a lot of clothes, but I like to look at ‘em.”

Favorite morning-after brunch: RICKY P’S. “Their Sunday brunch is the best hangover cure ever. It’s amazing. Anybody tells me they’re hungry, asks where to go, I say Ricky P’s, and they go, ‘what’s that?’”

Favorite reason to travel to Tampa for a gig: THE INDEPENDENT BAR. “That’s my favorite. I know [owner] Veronica [Danko], I’ve been camping with her a bunch, I actually met her camping. She’s super-cool, and they always have good beer, and the people are responsive — they actually listen, where in most bars [that’s not the case].”

Favorite reason to travel to Clearwater for a gig: 1933 PUB & GRILL. “That’s a pretty cool little place. Dean [Johanesen] was playing there, and they were looking for musicians, and he gave them my name. I’ve been playing there ever since. Again, amazing owners, super-cool people. They’ll buy your band shirts when you play there, and when you play, all of the staff will be wearing your shirts. I tried to give ‘em my shirts, but they wouldn’t let me.”


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