Nick Waterhouse was born in Southern California in 1987; his parents were serious music fans, and he grew up with the sounds of classic blues, soul, and rock sides by the likes of Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, John Lee Hooker, and Van Morrison filling the house. As a child, he studied the trumpet, but when he was 13 he picked up the guitar, and while attending high school in Huntington Beach he formed a mod-styled R&B combo called the Intelligentsia. The Intelligentsia earned a large and loyal local following, but when Waterhouse’s bandmates went off to college after the end of senior year, the group broke up and Waterhouse relocated to San Francisco. He imagined the Bay Area would be a good place to launch a new musical career, but he found the local music scene uninviting; however, he did land a job at a record store dealing in rare R&B and soul singles, where he was able to study vintage sounds of the ’50s and ’60s at length. Soon he began writing songs, and he fell in with a group of like-minded West Coast musicians.
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