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Ffej's Current Musical Projects

Ffej's Musical Projects

Listed in alphabetical order

The Heavy Push

The Heavy Push live at McCleary's 2013
A power trio featuring up-and-coming young guitarist Joey Dougherty and seasoned veterans Mike Dinse (bass) and Ffej Herb (drums), The Heavy Push performs a variety of 60s and 70s classic rock as well as blues, jam-band, and progressive rock-influenced original compositions.  At only eighteen years of age, Dougherty is poised to make a big dent in the local music scene and beyond!  Visit The Heavy Push on Facebook.


Promo photo, November 2013
Featuring Jay Baab (guitar), Andy Mowatt (guitar), Ben Eberts (bass) and Ffej (drums), herbie raised the bar for the Central PA jam band scene over the course of the last fifteen years.  The band released its latest full-length CD - simply titled herbie - in December 2013. In addition to playing sporadically around Central PA, herbie convenes annually for a special holiday show, dubbed "A Very Herbie Xmas," at Tellus360 in Lancaster for a special evening of original music, special cover tunes, and appearances from numerous guest musicians.  "A Very Herbie Xmas" is typically held on the second Saturday in December.  Check out some great herbie live show downloads @ You can also follow herbie on Facebook.
Discography: High Impact (2004); Hind (2005); Left of Center (2007); herbie (2013)

Number Nine

Number Nine at Governor Mifflin Days 2011
Ffej has been a member of this Berks County-based Beatles tribute band since the summer of 1999.  With an impressive repertoire of about 150 Beatles songs at its disposal, Number Nine really digs into one of the most hallowed catalogs in the history of rock and pop music, performing everything from the #1 hits to obscure album tracks to songs the Beatles themselves covered from other artists.  The five-piece group doesn’t bother with dressing up like the Beatles; instead, it concentrates on providing an authentic recreation of the Beatles’ timeless music to its audiences.  Number Nine includes John Heffelfinger (keyboards, vocals, guitar), Ed Mace (guitar, vocals), Dave Grill (guitar, vocals), Tom Freese (bass, vocals) and Ffej (drums, vocals).  For more information, visit the band's web site at or Facebook page.

Solar Federation

Solar Federation is the brainchild of Ffej Herb (herbie), a seasoned Central PA-based drummer whose life-long obsession with Rush has led him on many musical journeys since he first began playing at age 8. Although the idea of starting a band exclusively dedicated to covering Rush sparked many years ago, it wasn't until he finally met fellow Rush fanatic and guitar virtuoso, Eric Wirsing (Julie Schreiber Band), that the idea became a reality. With two of the core members of the band solidified, they set out on the daunting task of finding a Geddy Lee. This quest resulted in the inevitable splitting of Geddy's parts among three equally qualified musicians: local bass giant and prog rock disciple Mike Bitts (The Innocence Mission), trained vocalist and Berklee College alum Julie Schreiber (Julie Schreiber Band), and multi-instrumentalist Joseph Cin. Realizing that Rush was never known for its image or fashion sense, the band decided to focus on accurate representations of the challenging material rather than struggle with the limitations of a three-piece, kimono-wearing, prosthetic-nose-donning tribute act. Instead, what you get is all the passion and precision that made you love Rush in the first place. Living up to the expectation of Rush fans (who are some of the most rabid and devoted in the pantheon of rock music) should never be taken lightly. Solar Federation is well aware of this fact. In order to tackle the enormous undertaking of performing Rush’s music at a level deemed acceptable to its fans, the band spent an entire year honing its set list and tuning into all of the fine details that true enthusiasts of Rush’s music dissect with every spin of an album. And thus Solar Federation was born. Prepare for this band to assume control! For more information, visit or the band's Facebook page.

Think Tank Musiquarium

Think Tank Trio live at Harrisburg Brewers Fest 2013
Comprised of Ffej on percussion and Aaron Daniel Gaul (better known in Central PA as ADG) on guitar and loop station, Think Tank held a residency for two years every Thursday night at O’Reilly's Taproom at the Best Western Premier in Harrisburg, PA.  The duo performs a variety of classic rock, folk, bluegrass, and jam-band covers as well as compositions from ADG’s original repertoire.  Occasionally, you can see them perform as a trio with the addition of Mike Dinse or Jeremy Pierce on bass.  For more information, visit the band at Reverb Nation and follow on Facebook.