The fact that there are squash courts in Smith Union is relatively esoteric; that among these squash courts lies a hidden haven for Bowdoin musicians is practically unknown.

Down the tiled, fluorescent hallway of the second floor of the Union, in a room numbered "11" in black, stenciled digits, the College's resident rockers find refuge.

This cluttered little lair is like a second home to Mayu Kennedy '06, Tim Cashman '07, Jason Laurita '07 and Ian Haight '08, the four members of the band Lady Rose. With room 11 reserved four times each week, these musicians spend more time here than they do in any of their classes.

Lady Rose represents the fusion of a potpourri of styles and influences. Kennedy, the lead singer, draws from her affinity to the grunge rock of Pearl Jam and Nirvana. Laurita, the lead guitarist, self-identifies as a classic rock aficionado, with an especial taste for 80s hair rock. Haight, on the other hand, is described by his band mates as a punk rocker to the core. These musicians are united by two primary commonalities: a love of "straight rock," and a mutual distaste for jam bands.

The room is littered with wires, pedals, amplifiers, drum sets, and various other musical accessories. This converted squash court is by no means roomy, and much of floor space that is not covered with equipment is occupied by three large music lockers on the right wall. The lockers appear plain, with the exception of the one nearest to the door?it is adorned with a sketch of five figures drawn in flowing black pen. The drawing is labeled: "The Ones with the Girl."

This portrait is slightly out of date. The band no longer goes by "The Ones with the Girl." The decision that the length of its name was too cumbersome prompted the switch to the less literal "Lady Rose" last spring.

Secondly, Eric Volpe '08, depicted in the portrait as "the One on Guitar," resigned from the band last week.

Recognizing that a rhythm guitar is essential the type of sound they want to achieve, Lady Rose has since posted classifieds all over campus, and will be holding auditions for replacement guitarists soon.

"With two guitars, it frees up one of the guys to do solos and more intricate stuff, more harmonies," said Laurita, "whereas if it's just one guy on guitar, he really has to hold down the basic harmony of the chord." Laurita added that a rhythm guitar line allows him more freedom to do "acrobatics."

But the members of Lady Rose, especially Kennedy, are no strangers to the evolution of a rock band. Kennedy joined a group called The Stranger during her sophomore year. It was in that group that she met Cashman, then a freshman, who played the drums. Dysfunction caused The Stranger to disband after a short time, but Kennedy and Cashman remained together, and soon went in search of new musicians to complete their band. They held auditions at the beginning of last year, eventually ending up with Laurita, Haight, and Volpe, and donning the name "The Ones with the Girl."

"[Being in] the band really helped me establish myself at Bowdoin," said Haight, Lady Rose's bassist. "As a lonely incoming freshman, it really gave me something to get involved in."

The band's latest permutation found its footing last fall, performing a short set at Quinby house's Tsunami Relief benefit. But when they began playing at Jack McGee's Pub that everything locked into place.

If room 11 is the band's first home, the Pub is certainly its second. After its initial Quinby appearance, Pub Night was Lady Rose's venue of choice for the remainder of the year. Naturally, playing into the early hours of Friday at Jack McGee's resulted in some memorable experiences for the band members.

"At our first [Pub] show, it was senior Pub Night and everyone was just smashed," recalled Laurita.

"That was the hardest we've ever played...I couldn't talk for like a week," added Kennedy. "That show gave me bronchitis."

At their second appearance at the Pub, Lady Rose was scheduled to follow another group. While waiting for the opening band to finish up its set, the band members were approached by a drunken man who asked them if they were going on next.

"We said yes, and he proceeded to enter the pub and start yelling 'next band!'" said Haight. "We appreciated it."

The four current members of Lady Rose have played together for over a year now, and agree that their dynamic has matured significantly. The band has already played two gigs so far this semester, Quinby House's Red Cross benefit for Hurricane Katrina victims, and a party at Howell House.

"Last year was sort of a building year for us," said Laurita. "This year, we know each other's styles, we know the songs...we're much tighter."

The members of Lady Rose look to the future with optimism, despite needing to adjust to Volpe's departure. They are exploring the possibility of off-campus gigs and have plans to record some of their music. Most notably, the band intends to shift its focus from covering popular songs to writing more original material. Still, Lady Rose fans can look forward to adaptations of songs by Mountain, Guns 'n' Roses, and Pearl Jam in future shows.

Beyond this year, the Lady Rose's future is uncertain. Although Kennedy plans to graduate in May, Cashman, Laurita and Haight will be back in the fall. It remains to be seen what the next step of the band's evolution will be.

"We'll cross that bridge when we come to it," said Laurita.

He added, "But we're not going to stop rocking."