Kavarna continued in liveliness as our topic switched back to music. INAP graciously filled me in on concerts, artistic choices, and the audience.
J: You’ve released a self-titled EP in 2008 and a full length CD in 2012 titled “Need Money for Rocket Fuel”. When I listen to your compositions I find myself liking everything. Typically, there will be one or more songs by a band that are favorites, but not all of them. This is, in my opinion, a unique quality INAP has. Does each of you have favorites from what you’ve created? And if so, which ones and why?
Peter: Personally, I find I have my favorites I like to play. Playing the piece is very different than the recording sometimes; the live sound is different from the polished, studio sound that has multiple cello parts, tons of vocal harmonies, etc. I think it’s about the way some songs are recorded in the studio and I like all our songs. I think all of them are great.
There are some that rock a little harder and I think for a live show that tends to be little bit more fun for me; instead of the atmospheric, ethereal like “Wait Here” and “Ami’s Song”. Ya know the ones that we recorded are a little slower in tempo and can’t really bop your head to; like a chill, listening song. Sometimes you don’t have that in the audience at all. All they want is something they can bop their heads to or dance.
Steve: Yeah, I think we’ve all got our favorites, but we make sure it’s appropriate for the venue. Sometimes those slower songs can make a bigger impact if you’re at a really loud rock club. And, everybody quiets down and you could hear a pin drop.
I think we’re good with those extremes; going from soft to loud. Also, it’s giving people a chance to associate a memory with a song. We’ve had people use our songs at their wedding as their first dance. I’ve seen those relationships that other people have with the songs that you would have never anticipated. I think that’s my favorite thing is hearing about people using the songs to their own experiences. I’ve got my favorites, but it’s more important that other people have their favorites.
Peter: What’s your favorite, Steve?
Steve: My new favorite is probably “Diagram”. I love working on new stuff. I just love creating, which is why I do this, to make things. The newer the project is, that’s what I’m in love with.
Mark: That’s how I feel, too. Especially as a singer-songwriter. I like all the songs I have written; I kind of have to. But, I usually like the newest stuff the best, because that is what I’m feeling at the moment.
Peter: The struggle think is to try to make it sound fresh to everybody even though we’ve played it a billion times. Every audience is different. Last night was a sit down audience with people who didn’t know us. It’s very rare that people are talking over us, but we’ve been in those situations before, too and then we just turn our amps up. Some people like it, some people don’t. I think the worst thing is when you are background music. And, we never strive to be that band. We won’t even take gigs in which we’re the back-up or background band.
Mark: It’s just you don’t enjoy playing something like that. You’re just creating a texture behind. If they just want texture behind they should just get something that has a nice beat to it.
Steve: The other worse thing about that is ignoring the audience. You can’t ignore them. If there is one person in that audience of that hundred that came there to see you, because they heard your songs and they want a great night out. And, that’s who I’m playing for. I don’t care about those 99 drunk people, but I’m going to make sure that I play the best I can and I’m not going to ignore an audience member, because some people are being jerks.
Peter: Some of it is also demographic, too. When we go to different cities to play, some audiences are receptive and others are at the club with their friends and want to listen to background music.Some places like that are notorious for having live bands, but nobody listens to the band. We’ve played a few of those places and it’s not very fun.
J: Being based out of Milwaukee, many of your shows are in the southeast?
Mark: We’re trying to change that though. We’re trying to avoid shows in Milwaukee and play more outside the city. We’re planning on going out to Colorado in the spring to tour there.
Steve: We were in Austin in March.
J: Did you guys go to SXSW?
Peter: We set up a show with another band in Milwaukee at SXSW. It wasn’t an official showcase, many of the showcases are not official. There’s a plethora of both. It was a big event, we put a lot of time and energy into it. We thought it went really well. It would be nice to play an official showcase as well.
J: Another part of my question is that you guys played UWGB last night. Do you have any other shows coming up to this area?
Steve: But, we like this area though. We played in Neenah a couple months ago and then back in Green Bay. It’s nice to have that new audience that you have to prove yourself to again. We go to a new town and we have to start all over. When we go Chicago or Minneapolis, it’s a new crowd we have to break them in.
J: So then do you think that really keeps you on your game a little bit?
Peter: What I really like about this area is people like you <points to me> and people like her <points to the sound tech who joined us>. And people like Kurt, John and all these guys. I met them at one gig and it was like a friendship was built. And I think that this area in particular, is from what I’m told, like you had said, is a cover band area. This is the third interview we’ve had this week.We did one last night and one in the Fourth Estate, the UWGB student newspaper. I think it’s so cool that this area is yearning for that type of music.
I’m Not A Pilot sets out to be the band who creates unique and fresh music. They not only bring something to audiences that is innovative, but also are keenly aware that innovation starts with them.
Our morning together continued through more cups of coffee. The third portion of the interview can be found at Coffeeology with I’m Not A Pilot; Part 3.
♪♫♪♫ If you like this article, click the subscribe button to get my latest writing as soon as it is posted. Interested in my quips on the world around me? Follow me on Twitter, Google +, and Pinterest.
If you are a band who writes and performs original music, I would love to interview you. Hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org♫♪♫♪
© 2012 Jenna Cornell, All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior permissions from the author or Clarity Digital Group LLC d/b/a quadrust.com. Virtual Music Cafe, Heroes in Music and Stepping into the Twilight Zone are property of Jenna Cornell.