"I started playing music through the classic-rock route and then put an ad out on Craigslist.com that said I was looking for a project to join," Malley said during a telephone interview from the band's hometown of San Diego, Calif. "One of the guys, who I had met a few months earlier, hit me up."
Park City audiences will get a chance to feel the grooves when Legacy Pack
Malley, emcee Dub Fuego, vocalist/keyboardist Barshaun, drummer Demyan and guitarist Koka play Cisero's on Sunday, Sept. 16.
Although Malley had listened to an array of hip-hop that included Public Enemy and Dr. Dre while growing up, he developed a feel for the style once he joined Legacy Pack.
"It was a totally different thing for me as far as picking up the rhythms," Malley explained. "When I turned to the bass after playing the guitar for years, I had to pick up the whole subtleties of being a bass player versus being guitar player. I had to find different pockets of phrasings and get comfortable with them."
Although Legacy Pack has been together a little more than a year, it already has a grass-roots plan of promoting itself in place.
"We're just trying to take ourselves from being a Southern California band into a national level," Malley said. "We're doing all we can to book tours and letting people know we're coming to town.
Another step in the plan includes recording CDs.
"We want to constantly release new material so we're always in people's ears," he said.
The first of these CDs is the five-song extended play CD called "Live at the Lair," which was released a few weeks ago.
"When we reached our nine-month mark as a band, we felt we needed to have a physical CD to get into people's hands and help them understand that we're not just a club band that doesn't do much," Malley said. "We had tried a number of times, with varying success, of tracking some songs out. Then one day, we decided to set a deadline to get them all recorded."
The band set aside two nights for the sessions.
"The first was a practice night to make sure all the sounds and levels were balanced," Malley remembered. "We played two live takes the second night and all the recordings that are on 'Live at the Lair' came from the first take."
The band usually comes up with songs through jamming.
"Sometimes, though, one of us will come in with a complete idea and teach everyone else their parts," Malley said. "We're going through a change in our process, and it's become more of a group thing than an individual thing."
The group method has proven prolific for the Legacy Pack.
"We are continually writing songs," Malley said. "We're currently in the process of recording our second CD right now and we've got a backlog of stuff for our third release."
Legacy Pack's stripped-down, hip-hop style is a culmination of the band members' various musical influences, Malley said.
"Our lead emcee is rooted in hip-hop and our other vocalist comes from a jazz and church choir background," he said. "Our guitarist studied composition at University of California San Diego and has that firm foundation of music theory."
In contrast, drummer Demyan was trained through middle-school and high-school bands.
"I was originally a singer and songwriter, who learned music theory from our guitarist," Malley said. "So, you see all these backgrounds are what brought our sound together."
The band members know that music taste in general is an objective thing, but that only gives them the drive to do better.
"It's on us to make the best music we can and once the people hear it, it's up to them to decide if that's what they like," Malley said.
However, the band has already made a name for itself by opening for notable hip-hop artists such as Public Enemy, De La Soul, the Hieroglyphics and Living Legends.
"One of the best things I've experienced so far with Legacy Pack is that we got to open for Public Enemy," Malley said. "Like I said, that was one of my favorite bands growing up, and to be able to share the stage with them and hang out after the show was beyond words.
"Then (Public Enemy's) emcee Flavor Flav actually played my bass during the show," Malley said. "It was basically, 'Do you mind if Flavor Flav borrows your bass?' and I was like, 'Yeah, sure! If he wants to play my bass, it's cool.'"
Legacy Pack will play Cisero's, 305 Main St., on Sunday, Sept. 16, at 9 p.m. For more information, visit www.legacypack.com.