Jiggle the Handle
is a New England
-based jam and rock band led by guitarist and front man Gary Backstrom, who is often considered "one of the most underrated, fluid, and melodic players in the Northeast".
Jiggle the Handle grew out of a band at Clark University in Worcester, MA, called All U Can Eat. Members included Dan Greenwood on guitar, Jay Gillies on drums, Dave Osoff on keyboards, and Harry Bridge on bass. Gary Backstrom joined, and in the fall of 1989, with the departure of Dan Greenwood, Jiggle the Handle was born. The early versions of the band played mainly in the New England area. Highlights included opening for various national acts such as the Spin Doctors, Widespread Panic, the Radiators, and Little Feat.
A number of players came and went before the roster was solidified in 1998: Chris Q on bass, drummer Greg Vasso from Max Creek, and Paulie Wolstencroft from Planet Be on keys and vocals. A few years later, Michael Pujato was added to the roster as a percussionist.
Although the group never achieved widespread fame, they have a particularly devout following in the Boston jam band scene. Jiggle is known for its affinity for improvisation and harmonic lyrics.
After three releases and numerous national tours over the years, the band decided to part ways, playing their last show at the Berkshire Mountain Music Festival in August 2001.
The band occasionally regroups in Boston for reunion tours, with Backstrom, Vasso, and Wolstencroft. Chris Q and Michael Pujato occasionally join in the reunion. Most recently Jiggle played a reunion revival at Harper's Ferry in Allston, Massachusetts on April 12, 2007.
- Mrs. White's Party (1997)
- In it Again (1999)
- Live at the Stone Coast (2000)