|Adam (guitar), Chris (bass), Paul (vocals, guitar), Dean (drums)|
I sat down for $5 pints (and free water) at Tallboys one sunny Saturday afternoon with 3 outta 4 of The Fandemics, a rock and roll band "with a hint of rock and roll" from the Toronto'ish area. Paul describes them as "a really happy band who play really sad songs"inspired by failed relationships and life's shitty circumstances.
Funny how hard it can be to write when everything is going great and you're happy.. a lot of the time it's those darker moods and feelings that create inspiration.
Probably why you don't see any Happy Cat Diary entries.
Before The Fandemics Paul was in Darlings Of Chelsea, while Adam, Chris and Dean all played in a band called Take Drugs - sidenote: I think they need to re-form, call themselves Take Vitamins and write songs with good lessons for kids, ehhh - anyway after their respective bands split 'n' peeled they became all depressed because they didn't have that outlet that playing and writing music provides, so they started reaching out to each other to see what everyone was up to, turns out they were all in the same boat and in 2013 The Fandemics were born.
(this is the Coles notes version btw).
By day they each have pretty serious professions, not even one of them is working at McDonalds part-time. Adam is a Graphic Designer (yes, he designed The Fandemics shit) who works for a marketing company, Chris is a computer nerd over at IBM, Paul is a Pharmacist who gets up at 5am every morning to do CrossFit (like, how) and the absent Dean is a mother fucking Sociology Professor.
Paul comes from a family of un-musicians, yet despite that when he heard Nirvana for the first time he knew he had to pick up the guitar.. a huge fan of grunge and metal, in grade 7 he started playing acoustic Guns 'N' Roses and of course Nirvana tunes and the rest is history (holding back from making a Kurt Cobain death related joke here out of respect for Courtney Love...HA).
For Adam it was Van Halen and that epic EVH guitar that got him into playing. Well, that, and not wanting to keep playing hockey because he was 'a little guy'.. so when his parents gave him the option of more hockey at the full contact level or a guitar, well, you can piece together what happened next.. He ended up getting that Van Halen guitar for Xmas too.
Hip hip hooray for happy endings!
Chris probably has the best 'getting into music' story.. one day his school was having a talent show so he submitted a tape of Iggy and the Stooges pretending it was him and his "band" that didn't actually exist yet. Well, turns out they got in 'cause like, Iggy fucking rules, so now he had to pull a band out of his ass. He knew Dean at the time and Dean already knew how to play so he recruited him, learned to play guitar and instantly fell in love with it. They played their first show just 6 months after forming.
I don't know how the fuck this mysterious Dean dude started playing, but I do know how highly the rest of the guys think of him. You can tell a lot about a band (/anyone) from how they talk to and about each other, especially when one of them isn't around. I think what impressed me the most about talking to these guys was how much respect for each other they had, and there was nonstop praise for the MIA drummer and genuine admiration for his talents. "Best drummer I've ever played with" seemed to be the overall opinion, and there was talk of how weird it felt to play without him. Dean and Chris have been playing together for so long that they can understand what the other is thinking with just a glance. Pretty cool how people can develop that sort of connection with someone through music and the creation of.. I recently watched The Pyramid Code (watch it, it's really cool) and it mentions how we only use 5 (6?) of our senses, but we're supposed to have 360...
....did your mind just explode?
Really makes you think about those crazy intuitions and connections amiright!?
Sadly we live in the ADD Generation, which is something that kept coming up during our conversation. There's never any time to stop and sense the roses anymore, but luckily when it comes to coming up with new material "the writing process favours a busy mind" for Paul. I'm sure most of you have experienced this - when you sit down and try to force creation your brain can feel constipated, but when you're preoccupied you can shit out a song in like 15 minutes.
Speaking of the ADD Generation I've stopped writing this multiple times because I keep getting sidetracked by this Who Is Your Disney Doppelganger quiz that insists that this Anna character I've never seen/heard of before in a Disney movie is my DD. She is described as 'combative', 'loving' and 'naive'. Rude. The only similarity between us I can see is we have the same colour hair (how this quiz knows what my hair colour is..) which is, honestly, a tad hairist. Double rude.
I also need to be listening to music while I write, so I have the new Fandemics songs that Adam gave me before the interview blasting from my room on repeat. They recorded everything themselves and they sound fucking great. We all know how much I love the DIY thing (ie my shitty video editing jobs, BonerTit). A great tip I learned from the guys in regards to writing/recording/whatever is 'The Playlist Test', where you throw the track in with a bunch of other songs on your iTunes and hear how it measures up. I naively have never thought of this, so I decided to test it out with their tunes to see if I still thought they measured up against some of my all time favourite songs. Muahahaha.
UPDATE: I tried the quiz again a few hours later and got Jasmine: Intelligent, wise and often indecisive. Boo-ya!