About Us

OOTB is a five piece dance band with roots in R & B and Classic Rock with some tasty original material blended into the mix. Where ever Out of the Blue is playing there's a party going on
Based out of Bend, Oregon, OOTB creates a vibe that audiences of all ages can move to. With the cool sounds of Motown, rock, and soulful blues it's a style of musical groove that makes people want to get up and shake it on the dance floor.  Influences like Al Green, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Etta James, Sam & Dave inspire the R & B side. Then throw in some Stones, Delbert Mcclinton, Susan Tedeschi and some Stevie Ray Vaughn and everyone can find something to love.

We are blessed with strong vocals and vocal harmonies. Our musicians are versatile and expressive.  Our goal is to provide the very
best musical experience possible for our audiences. In short we’re all playing music for the right reasons….We love it!

Lead Vocalist Heather Drakulich loves to get everyone dancing and having fun. She took classical vocal instruction early in her career but eventually gave in to her passion for Rock and Soul. That early training shines through and reveals a vocal powerhouse who will keep you entertained with her passion, energy and style. Heather did a stint with a Seattle area band called “New Moon” who opened for the Shirelles while on tour. Some of her important influences are: Aretha Franklin, Etta James and Bonnie Raitt. Heather is spending time writing these days with one of her tunes prominent on the new CD.

Tom Brouillette, lead guitar and vocals, is a smoking hot player with range. He can
play everything from country to blues to rock to acoustic sweetness. Tom Studied at the Guitar Institute in Hollywood taking instruction from the likes of Robben Ford and other top artists. He played a wide variety of venues in the Reno/Lake Tahoe area over several years, winning a major battle of the bands competition in the process resulting in a recording contract and local air play for the music. Tom is also writing music these days with a cool R&B oriented tune on the new CD.

Keyboardist Lou Schmerber adds a rich foundation to the band sound taking on leads as well. He covers not only the more traditional Organ, electric and acoustic Piano sounds but also adds horns, Synth and maybe even some percussion. Lou adds rich vocal harmonies and is our go to guy for dicing out harmonies on tricky material. Lou grew up in a musical family taking several years of piano lessons back in the day. Lou played with “The Blue Royals” in the Portland area for several years. Lou also penned an original tune on the new CD.

Bassist Bob Akers is considered one of the top bass players in central Oregon. He is a true artist with his chosen instrument. He started playing bass in high school. Soon after graduation he was doing professional gigs around town. Word of his talent spread resulting in a tour in 1971 with Bill Medley of the Righteous Brothers. After that he played with a number of bands on the road and eventually settled in Southern California where he kept busy playing with a variety of groups and also did some session work. Bob calls Bend home now and enjoys the vibrant music scene there. Bob was chief arranger of our version of “Day Tripper” on the new CD.

Drummer/Percussionist Lance Van Buren keeps the band honest with a highly creative and consistent beat. He also has a strong singing voice taking the lead on some tunes. Over a span of 3 decades he has gigged across the US. From Boise, ID. to Sacramento, CA. to Roanoke, VA.. Lance started out as a Rock guy keeping it simple and solid with a love for syncopation. While playing Blues Jams for about 13 years he learned many blues styles and also Latin rhythms. Lance has played with a number of bands with diverse styles. Most recently he did a five year run with 'Tony Rae and Common Ground' in Eugene Oregon playing covers and originals. With OOTB Lance is concentrating on perfecting the danceable aspects of the music. 

Tom Brouillette, rocking guitar player, and Heather Drakulich, the gal with the piping husky vocals also perform around Central Oregon as a Duo.   Tom sings and plays the acoustic guitar while Heather sings, strums, and plays percussion (drum box).   This is perfect for performing in smaller venues or private parties in homes to make it something special.

Heather, John, and Mitch