Welcome to Band Marino's world. There's pizza, a mysterious stranger, potential Nike endorsements, allusions to football players, dance battles, harmony and joy, and last but not least, good 'ol folk-based indie pop. They're an unsigned band appreciated not only by their strong Orlando following but by industry fellows - The Coalition of Music Stores, the be exact - and a growing national recognition. Today, March 4th, Band Marino celebrates the re-release of The Sea & the Beast. Support & buy.
First of all, can you state your name and what you play in Band Marino?
Dylon: Dylon York and I play drums. Nathan: Nathan Bond and I play guitar and sing and so forth. Jesse: Jesse Adams I play guitar Abraham: Abraham Couch and I play bass Mysterious Stranger: Mysterious Stranger, and I play banjo, keyboard, synthesizer, mandolin, accordion, and guitar.
How are things? Band Marino is an unsigned band that is really on the rise - it sounds really exciting. You guys are really making a name for yourselves. Can we expect a record deal soon? What plans do you have lined up for the future? Get us pumped.
Dylon: Things are so good right now. We have been touring and selling this record on our own for a while and now we have this great tour we just left on plus a national release thanks to CIMS! We are doing everything we've set out to do on our own and we are proud because we've worked hard for it. Its very rewarding, knowing that we will be traveling the country and seeing and hearing our record everywhere we go without a contract to anyone. We have already started recording an e.p. during all of this and it will be out later after the record has been out for a little bit, so count on more touring! Nathan: Yeah and in addition to the e.p. weíve begun writing for our next full length, and have already started playing some of those songs in our set. Iím pretty freaking excited about all the possibilities for the next album, thereís a whole lot of ideas which are new territory for us that Iím particularly excited about exploring. Weíll see what develops. We know itís still a ways off yet so anything can change, but expect more spaghetti western epics!
So, let's throw out the term "making it." When, by your definition, will Band Marino have "made it?" Is it when you guys sign a good record deal, or when you are endorsing Nike, or maybe just touring the country to steady crowds every night? Is this something that has crossed your mind before?
Dylon: I think itís hard to describe our future, Itís hard to describe our music. Our attitude is more about this being our lives and career, "making it" is a funny thought when itís really more about sustaining it. We've made it when we can quit our part time jobs. Nathan: I agree with Dylon on this one. I also think it would be an icy day in hell when they come to Band Marino for a Nike endorsement. We canít even dunk!
If we have someone here that has never listened to your band before, how would you sum up your music as to try to convince them give it a listen?
Dylon: Thereís plenty of you that havenít heard our music! I usually tell people to imagine Willie Nelson and The Pixies going to see a spaghetti western and having some raisinettes together. Nathan: But donít you think Willie would just hit on Kim Deal during the entire movie? I could see this getting on Joey Santiagoís nerves in a major way, might really detract from all the squinting. Dylon: HmmÖ Jesse: I donít really like to compare our music to other bands or things like that just because our music is always changing and really the amount of our material that anyone has even heard is pretty slim at this point. Iíd rather they go into it without any preconceived ideas as to what it is. We like doing a lot of things anyhow, and writing songs that contrast other songs and so forth creates an interesting picture I think. You want your album to be a journey.
Nathan: I couldnít agree more.
What was the first song you wrote together? Was the chemistry immediately there, or was it a work in progress?
Jesse: I believe the first one that we all wrote together was "Arlee Hayes". It wasnít the first Band Marino song but it was the first that the full band wrote together. Obviously there was some chemistry present, but also with any team or group that chemistry is a work in progress. I think weíre still figuring each other out, and ourselves for that matter.
The name Band Marino ... where did it come from? I hear it's a spin off from Dan Marino.
Nathan: You should know better than to believe everything you hear! There is much mystery in this world, evil waits in the shadows, but often times so does truth. Sometimes that is where you must seek your answers. Jesse: To me Band Marino is the most ultimate and all inclusive of names, this hullabaloo about sports figures, I must say, is highly disconcerting. What would the whales think?
User question: What do you think of the local Orlando music scene thatís starting to come to life. What bands are your favorites from the area?
Jesse: Well I think itís great, there a lot of really awesome kids out there who come to shows and play music. I mean nobody really knows how to have a good time like the Orlando kids do. They come out in costumes and dance until they fall over and thereís just a lot of love and camaraderie between everybody who comes out to shows. Thereís some really great bands too, some of my favorites are Baron Von Bear, and Matt Butcher, I really like Mirror Pal and thatís just to name a few. Nathan: Donít forget The Sugar Oaks, and The Cook Trio either.
You guys grabbed what sounds like an awesome opportunity with The Coalition of Music Stores and their Developing Artist Program. Instead of being the recommended band, what up-and-coming outfits should we watch out for?
Nathan: Well, The Modern Skirts are working on their next full length right now, and that should come out in the fall, Iím pretty excited to see where they went with this one. Also Look Mexico continues to tour incessantly and work harder than any band out there, and Baron Von Bear from Orlando are in the bright and early stages of being a band but before long theyíll be pretty much destroying it Iím fairly certain (and their debut E.P. is going be pretty rad), not to mention Summerbirds in the Cellar are opening for R.E.M. at SXSW. Those bands are also our good friends, and good people (so support them damnit!).
I've read that when recording The Sea & the Beast, it was a real eye-opener. It was self-produced, right? What lessons did you walk away with? What will you remember to do differently next time you're in the studio?
Nathan: Well it wasnít really self-produced. We had a ton of help from our friends Travis Adams and Dave Pierce. They kind of stepped in and took us under their wing for a couple weeks and helped us get the meat of it all down, and showed us how itís done. We would have been completely lost without them. Jesse: It was definitely a huge learning experience for us though. I think we learned almost as much about how not to do things as about how to do things. Like we tracked everything and then spent a year in overdubs and mixing before we were ready to call it finished. As young inexperienced musicians when you hear your stuff back for the first time I think itís always an eye opener, you find yourself asking ďDid I really play that part? What was I thinking?Ē Nathan: Yeah it was almost a matter of re-learning how to play music and to think in a totally new way, and I feel like it took us a while to find our footing... not that itís been completely found yet, but we have a better grasp on every aspect of being a band from the experience.
And here is a user question: What will the sound of the upcoming EP sound like compared to The Sea & t Beast? Will you continue to go in more of a folk direction?
Dylon: Well, its going to sound better first of all. We've learned so much about being in the studio together and this e.p. was made with some serious good vibes. We are so excited to release these four songs! It is a more folk direction than The Sea & The Beast, itís more like The Field & The Harvest. It was really fun recording it and using the instruments we used. Nathan: Yeah, we decided to do this one as live as possible, and keep it extremely organic, stripped down, and mellow. Most all the parts that the 4 of us are playing on were done in one session all recorded live. It was a really cool and different experience for us. The next full length however, will be pretty different from this; it will be more arranged/orchestrated and should have a lot more energetic stuff.
I really want to talk about your live show. Here is another one of our user questions: Will you guys be incorporating more amazing and hilarious little skits into your live shows? Would you agree with someone saying that you're basically the best dance music out there?
Dylon: I wouldnít say the best but I would say the most surprising dance music. We have fun when we play and the things that happen during our set have all been very organic and have come out of the music that we are playing. Crazy stuff is always happening during our set that even we donít expect. Nathan: Ha, itís true, last tour Jesse and I started taking the middle section of ďComo Se Dice Seniorita, Act 1: The Laymanís LamentĒ and using it to try to battle each other on stage, it wasnít planned at all, but it kept evolving and getting more and more fun. This tour we decided to do something completely different with it. Itís still changing every night, but letís just say weíve been exploring the great mysteries of life and death.
Sounds like you guys are more so a live band than a studio band (which is the way it should be, in my opinion). Would that be an accurate assumption?
Nathan: I donít know if Iíd say that, weíre definitely more experienced in front of a crowd than we are in a studio, and I know we feel freer that way. But I know I tend to think of things in more of album terms, and definitely get excited about the endless possibilities and arrangements in a studio setting. I will admit though, my favorite thing in all the world is playing for a bunch of enthusiastic people. Sharing that experience, singing along, dancing, letting go, loving the people next to you, getting that many people in one place all in the same mindset, itís a beautiful thing that canít be topped. Abraham: Itís not just you making the songs anymore when youíre playing live, itís everyone in the room, everybody contributes to the vibe, and the shape the songs might take that night. Itís pretty much awesome! Dylon: This band has lived on stage since we started. We have slowly matured into our live show and the same with the studio time, the studio time just has been a lot less. We could always just put out a double live album. I mean KISS did it.
What happens when you encounter an unresponsive crowd? Do you have any tricks to ease the awkwardness or swoon them into dancing?
Nathan: Offer them a life enriched with harmony and joy! Abraham: The way I figure it is whether there are 2 people or 2000 people, they need to see the same band on stage.
Future tour plans?
Nathan: Anywhere and everywhere!
I see you like pizza. Name your top three topping combinations.
Jesse: Black olives, artichokes, and mushrooms Nathan: Pepperoni, jalapeŮos, mushrooms, Abraham: Sausage, sun dried tomatoes, and feta cheese
That's all I have; thank you very much for taking time to answer these questions. Any last words?
Go to www.thinkindie.com and find out where you can pick up our record! And tell all your friends to go pick one up too!
Very nice interview Julia! :o)
I love the music they create and I love those guys. They are so sweet.
I definitely recommend picking up the album and seeing them live. They always put on a wonderful show.