“Tread your path, no matter how different it is from that of others. If it makes you happy, its the right one for you.”Simon Lunche (The Blondies)
“Wise beyond their years…” is perhaps the best way to describe this group of young men from the Bay Area in California. Having just released their single “Just Another Evening” these young up-and-comers are ones to keep your eye on.
Simon Lunche was kind enough to take some time and answer a few questions. Check out what he has to say about his history with music, the inspiration behind “Just Another Evening”, and his life’s philosophy.
Who does your act consist of?
Frank Klopotowski on bass, Isaac Roth on guitar, Elias Williams on drums, Jerry Feist on keys, and myself (Simon Lunche) on guitar and lead vocals.
Where are you and your band from?
Simon: We’re all from the Bay Area. Berkeley, Oakland, and San Francisco.
Thinking back to early childhood, what was your first experience with music?
Simon: The first one that I really remember as being significant was when I heard Eric Clapton play the guitar. That experience is actually the reason I wanted to start playing the guitar. As long as I can remember though, there’s been instruments around my house for me to bang on, but I didn’t have any real interest in playing them until I heard Clapton.
What type of music did you hear the most growing up? Is it different from what you listen to now?
Simon: There was always tons of Beatles playing around the house when I was younger. A lot of songwriting inspiration came from them, and still does. When I’m getting ready to produce a new record the first thing I’ve always done is listen through my whole Beatles library. There’s an insane amount to learn from the work that they did.
What was the first song that you ever sang?
Simon: Ya know, I really don’t remember, I’d guess it was something I wrote when I was really young though. I have this whole slew of garageband recordings that I wrote when I was probably 6, and I definitely don’t remember singing before that.
What made you first realize you wanted to pursue a career in music?
Simon: I’ve always loved music, everything about it. When I started writing it was the energy of playing live which definitely had a real intrigue to me. I would watch my hero’s play these huge venues and have every single person dancing, and singing along, and I would imagine it was me on the stage. At this point in my life it’s really that I can’t imagine a day where I’m not completely engrossed in my guitar. I want to live a life I love, and for me the path to that is music.
For those who have never seen or heard your music before, how would you describe your music for the public audience?
Simon: I would say that it is The Beatles, The Kooks, and Jeff Buckley, mixed with a healthy dose of raw emotion and melodies that stay with you and have you dancing after the music stops.
Would you rather play live performances or be in the studio?
Simon: They both have their special moments. When i’ve spent months crafting a song, there’s no better feeling than watching it come to life in the studio. I get to work through every little noise, and piece of gear until the song comes out feeling exactly how I hear it in my head. The other half of that is once I’ve crafted a song in the studio I can go out onto a stage and watch peoples reactions to it in real time. Thats an amazing thing for me.
Have you ever entered any contests to enhance your musical career?
Simon: No, I haven’t yet had any real experience entering my music into contests.
Have you been involved in any benefit performances?
Simon: Yeah, I’ve been involved in many benefits over the past many years. Some for cancer research, and others for suicide prevention.
What do you think your greatest accomplishment has been so far in your musical career?
Simon: To me it’s just the quantity of music I’ve been able to write. I feel super blessed to be able to sit down and just sort of let the music flow out of me whenever I want. Don’t know what I’d do without the ability to put a feeling or experience into a song.
If you had to categorize your music, what genre would it best fit?
Simon: When people ask me that question I always say “Indie Rock”, but what I mean by that is really just a softer, more intimate rock sound.
What are your songs about and what general themes do they talk about?
Simon: There’s definitely a lot of love songs in our repertoire
Why do you choose to focus on these themes?
Simon: I focus on what I’m experiencing at the time. I had been trying to work out personal relationships at the time, and I think that most of us are trying to do the same for most of our lives.
Are there any stories surrounding your songs that you’d care to share?
Simon: “Just Another Evening” was influenced by what I was seeing within the Teen Culture when I was in High School, and still goes on in college at parties. There’s this idea that rape culture is “normal,” it’s literally just another evening and nothing unusual. Because it’s been so normalized, people don’t talk about it, or think anything is wrong with it, when actually it’s horrifying. The fact that this happens every day is very scary to me.
Does anyone in particular influence you?
Simon: All the great musicians influence me to work harder and learn more. Right now it’s Jeff Buckley and John Mayer.
What are your immediate music career goals?
Simon: Just to keep making more music, get it out to more people, keep touring. I hope to be signed by a label at some point which would give us the resources to tour more and spread the love!
What type of fan base do you have?
Simon: My music appeals to large audience. I have vey young kids who are interested in my music teenagers who can identify with my music and lyrics, and also those people who grew up during the British Invasion. When they see us, they say it’s like seeing the “modern” Beatles at a small venue.
Music tends to appeal to everyone, young and old. Do you have any advice for the youth of today?
Simon: Do what you love, theres too many people who lead lives dong things that make them unhappy. Tread your path, no matter how different it is from that of others. If it makes you happy, its the right one for you. Have faith in it.
What do you do with your time away from music?
Simon: These days theres not much time spent away from music. Like any other normal teenager I’ve got friends who I see, I like to skate, surf, and read a lot. I’m very interested in psychology.
As an artist, is there anything special you hope to be able to accomplish?
Simon: It would be nice to help give voice to emotions or feelings others are having and unable to talk about themselves. I’d also like to give people hope for the future.