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The Steepwater Band | real people?

As you know, I headed off to London last month to see The Steepwater Band in their first performance in the UK, a great gig. Last time I spoke of them on the site I left it between the time I parked and the time they went on stage, so filling in the gaps seems like a good idea.

The Steepwater Band photo by shalimar beekman shalimarbphotography

The Steepwater Band photo by shalimar beekman shalimarbphotography

Bush Hall in London is an iconic venue, you can feel the history, as much as you can feel the dripping ceiling (stay clear of the left of the stage about 30 feet back towards the wall…. hey that makes it a 45 degree angle, water drips from the ceiling, that is the beauty of venues like Bush Hall).

Anyway, I got to the venue a little early and the three guys were still doing a sound-check. Eventually after a few cigarettes my need to chat got ahead of my need to let them sound-check and I met a guy with a pony-tail (As it turns out this was Andy De Rosa, from Andy De Rosa and Electric Mojo, soon to be featured on the site with their singing guitar and keyboard), who led me over to meet up with Jeff Massey, we agreed that I needed another cigarette and they needed to get off the stage.

As all the bands who have met up with me know, I take no notes, I don’t want a formal interview and all is cool as mustard, well unless you have a PR major label producer hanging on your armpit. So, I found myself backstage having a chat and my real interest with The Steepwater Band was to explore why these guys play so much, record so little and are they real – I was delighted.

It was a hesitant start – Jeff, Tod and Joe, took this as a ‘formal interview, while Steve, the tour manager,  stood nervously in the wings and I can’t do formal interviews – pink hair, and razor-blade ear-ring kind of don’t equal ‘formal’, but after a while we got to some open space. Joe wandered off to speak to the guys from Audiogold, another band who will be on the site soon and Ted offered me a beer, Steve in the mean time decided I was either a nut-job, or all was fine and headed off to deal with the preparations.

So what did I find out?

As I mentioned in the review of the gig I met the guys afterwards, so I am going to meld it all into one perspective.

The Steepwater Band are absolutely committed to playing live music, they breathe it and they live it, Joe mentioned, ‘at home on a Saturday night watching some repeat on television I just want to be out playing’. Of course I pursued the question of why the low number of ‘releases’ to live gigs, while the response was one of finance, I just have a hunch that live performances are what really matters to these guys. As soon as the gig had finished the trio were back to the audience, ensuring we had enjoyed it. Throughout the set, they were absolutely committed to the gig, sure for a UK audience the drum roll over Jeff’s announcements were a cliché, but this is a quintessentially American band, playing honest American rock and blues.

We chatted about SxSW, in the US – no contacts, but to get real for a minute, I had a conversation with a guy at Bush Hall, who had travelled over from Holland to see the gig. Maybe SxSW takes itself as a ‘we’ll call you’ concept.

You know how often these guys play gigs, if you are on our newsletter, I was flabbergasted by the fact they all work part-time. My head was spinning…. do what? A committed touring band, new material, big tours and working part-time, that is absolute commitment and still they wanted to ensure the audience were happy.

I had to head off to, ‘ are you playing the same set every-night’, nope was the retort. I wasn’t shocked by that as these guys have a plethora of material.

I know I have rambled, but it happens. I may not be the hugest fan of the style of music, but you know that anyway (I really enjoy the night and will be amongst the first to ensure I have a space on their return to the UK, it was a superb lesson to anyone in a band – without an audience you can engage, you are whistling in the wind), I have absolute respect and admiration for a bunch of guys, who truck in to London, get an audience engaged and still don’t feel they are quite ‘worthy’.

Joe and Angela have a great wedding day in September, Jeff, sorry we didn’t get a chance to catch up again and Tod, I absolutely was engaged with your shadow as much as you were.

Another time I will share the story if Joe’s grand-dad and the pint of bitter.

Keep up to speed with the indie bands blog, by following me on twitter.

Related posts:

Audiogold | Embers and Theories
The Dull Blades
Oxford Train

Comments

5 Responses to “The Steepwater Band | real people?”
  1. electric says:

    I must say that I’ve enjoyed exploring your page, will visit back later..keep up the excellentwork.have a beautiful day

  2. Google says:

    Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point. You obviously know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?

  3. richard says:

    this band is great. you should also check out the band “Signal Me” you can find them on myspace, itunes, rhapsody, amazon, emusic, etc.

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