The Beat Goes On

From Stanwood to Bellingham, Perfect by Tomorrow has evolved

Band brings reggae-infused rock tunes to Wild Buffalo
April 18, 2023 at 5:30 a.m.
Perfect by Tomorrow, a Bellingham-based band formed by Stanwood High School students in 2012, will perform its reggae-infused rock sounds April 25 at the Wild Buffalo.
Perfect by Tomorrow, a Bellingham-based band formed by Stanwood High School students in 2012, will perform its reggae-infused rock sounds April 25 at the Wild Buffalo. (Photo courtesy of Alicia Hauff)

CDN Contributor

Normally, I hear about new local bands in the usual ways: word of mouth and the internet. Perfect by Tomorrow, on the other hand, came to my attention in a pretty unusual way — when they played a show at my kid’s preschool. 

The ensemble’s practice space was next door, so they would occasionally come over and play for the kids who would inevitably go completely wild. I can’t guarantee the crowd at the Wild Buffalo on Tuesday, April 25, will be quite as unhinged as those preschoolers, but I suspect it will make for a pretty good time. 

The band was formed in 2012 by Stanwood High School classmates Turner Williams (guitar/vocals), Joe Sunderland (guitar/vocals), Morgan Williams (bass) and Justin Dobbelaar (drums). They started out playing school assemblies and talent shows, then relocated to Bellingham after high school and got to work developing a strong regional following for their reggae-infused rock tunes.

Perfect by Tomorrow has since put out three full albums and toured extensively up and down the West Coast. Last year, the group did a monthlong tour of the western U.S. to promote their most recent album, “Euphoria.” They said another highlight of their time together thus far was recording a single in Florida with Ted Bowne of Passafire.

At the show next Tuesday, Perfect by Tomorrow will be joined by The Earth Tones and Marla Hooch. Expect a mixture of deep grooves with the occasional heavy riff, music for both dancing and head-banging.

Make.Shift is hosting an interesting event from 5–7 p.m. Saturday, April 22. The “Songbird Social” is basically a chance for area musicians who are looking for collaborators or bandmates to come together to meet and possibly even jam, without the pressure of an audience. Advance registration is suggested; check social media for details. Later that evening there will also be an open mic. 

The big thing you might notice in the calendar this week is that Boundary Bay's beer garden is back and kicking off with a bang this weekend with three shows. Also, Kulshan has announced its Trackside location will open with live music on Friday, May 5. Believe it or not, outdoor music season is finally getting close. 

Finally, the Bellingham Idol competition has returned! If you think you’ve got the chops, the first round of this singing competition kicks off Wednesday, April 26 at the Wild Buffalo. The first seven weeks are audition weeks, and the best performers from those will be invited to the quarterfinals in June. Everything will be taking place on Wednesdays at the Buff. The grand prize is $2,500. If you think you might have what it takes, check for details. 

Live music listings 

Tuesday, April 18

Archer: 7 p.m., The Piper’s Despair (Irish folk)
Aslan: 8 p.m., Jazz Night
Boundary: 6 p.m., Paul Klein on piano
Culture Cafe: 7 p.m., Open Mic
Greene’s Corner: 6 p.m., Open Mic
Menace: 7 p.m., Invitational Blues Jam

Wednesday, April 19

Boundary: 6 p.m., Aaron Guest on piano
Greene’s Corner: 6 p.m., Gaby & Aprylle (singer-songwriters)
Honey Moon: 8 p.m., Open Mic
Rockfish: 6 p.m., Norris and Nicely (blues)
Stones Throw: 6 p.m., Cardova (R&B/funk)
Underground Coffeehouse: 7 p.m., Laguna Largo (rock)
Wild Buffalo: 8:30 p.m., California Honeydrops (retro soul/R&B)

Thursday, March 20

Blue Room: 6 p.m., Open Mic, 8 p.m., Sour Fuzz, Midpak, open jam
Brown Lantern: 8:30 p.m., Open Mic
Farmstrong: 6 p.m., Savanna Woods (singer-songwriter)
Guemes Island General Store: 5:30 p.m., 7:20 String Band (folk)
Thirsty Badger: 7 p.m., Open Mic
That’s What I Like: 6 p.m., Micheal Longeneker (folk/rock)
Wild Buffalo: 9 p.m., Cytrus, Swindler, Family Mystic
Zeeks: 7 p.m., Ari Joshua (jam band)

Friday, April 21 

Beach at Birch Bay: 6 p.m., Naked Cowboys
Birdsview: 6 p.m., Conrad Gruener (country)
Blue Room: 9 p.m., Smooth Kiwi, Panda Conspiracy, ELK (rock)
Boundary: 5 p.m., Whalien, Silk Jammies, Tea Seas Trio
Fireside: 7 p.m., Tom Sandblom
Greene’s Corner: 6 p.m., Odd Mood Jam Band
Guemes Island General Store: 5:30 p.m., Antique Doublespeak
Honey Moon: 8 p.m., Rift Valley Ramblers (folk)
Shakedown: 9 p.m., Kurly Somthing, Very Serious, Niko Haley, Pleasure Dome (noisy rock)
Skylark’s: 8 p.m., Penny Stinkers (acoustic covers)
Thirsty Badger: 8 p.m., Michael Dayvid (acoustic covers)

Saturday, April 22

Anchor Tavern: 9 p.m., Pretty Much Nothing (rock)
Beach at Birch Bay: 4 p.m., Little Big Band (classic/Southern rock)
Blue Room: 9 p.m., Harbor Day, Anna Katarina, That’s Nokay (indie pop)
Bourbon: 8 p.m., Mutiny Bay (hard-rock covers)
Birdsview: 6 p.m., Glass Heart String Choir (alt-folk)
Boundary: 1 p.m., Quickdraw Stringband; 5 p.m., Terrior; 6:15 p.m., Cardova; 9 p.m., Hot Tomatoes
Brown Lantern: 9 p.m., Jukebox Jack
Conway Muse: 8 p.m., The Atlantics (classic rock)
DownTime: 7 p.m., Michael Dayvid
Eagle Haven: 6 p.m., Mary Ellen Lykins & Craig Adams (blues)
Fireside 4 p.m., Singers’ Saturday
Gateway1890: 7 p.m., Thomas Sandblom & Mark Williams (acoustic covers)
Greene’s Corner: 6 p.m., Deep River Blues
Honey Moon: 8 p.m., David Donohue (folk)
Make.Shift: 8 p.m., Girls Know, Oliver Elf Army, Cat Positive (indie rock)
Old Edison: 8 p.m., Cory Vincent and the Electric Band (blues/rock)
Rockfish: 7:30 p.m., Queen’s Bluegrass
Shakedown: 9 p.m., Dancifer (dance covers)
Skylark’s: 8 p.m., Whitewing (blues)
Stone’s Throw: 6 p.m., Tenderpile’s Smile Aisle (jazz)
Wild Buffalo: 9 p.m., SubDocta, Black Carl!, Slayde, Lord Kuja (electronic)

Sunday, April 23

Boundary: 8 p.m., Forest Ray (psychedelic rock)
Kulshan: 5 p.m., Free Harmony (classic folk/rock)
Main Street: 6 p.m., Open Mic
Old Edison: 5:30 p.m., Ron Bailey & the Tangents
Mount Baker Theatre: 3 p.m., Bellingham Symphony Orchestra
Shakedown: 8 p.m., Vinyl Williams, Laguna Largo, The Groovy Nobody (neo-psychedelia)

Monday, April 24

Blue Room: 8 p.m., Jerry Steinhilber Trio (jazz)
FireHouse: 3:30 p.m., Deborah Dewey (classical piano)
Kulshan: 6 p.m., Broken Bow Stringband (folk)

Tuesday, April 25

Archer: 7 p.m., The Piper’s Despair (Irish folk)
Aslan: 8 p.m., Jazz Night
Boundary: 6 p.m., Paul Klein on piano
Culture Cafe: 7 p.m., Open Mic
Greene’s Corner: 6 p.m., Tenderpile’s Smile Aisle (jazz)
Menace: 7 p.m., Invitational Blues Jam
Ranch Room: 9 p.m., Michael Dayvid
Wild Buffalo: 9 p.m., Perfect By Tomorrow, The Earth Tones, Marla Hooch (rock/reggae)

Wednesday, April 26

FireHouse: 6:30 p.m., Naomi Moon Siegel Ensemble (jazz)

Before heading out to listen to live music, check with individual venues to make sure the event is still taking place as scheduled. 

Jesse Stanton's music column, The Beat Goes On, runs Wednesdays. Email: or Twitter: @JSBhamMusic.

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