Voices Of The Underground Pt.3


Several weeks ago fifteen questions were posed to a number of music artists in the Christian music scene, ranging from the light-hearted to the deeply spiritual. We received many responses, some very helpful, and some…. not so much. Some of the answers were short and sweet, some were very drawn out and eloquent. Many expressed frustrations with the current landscape of the music industry, while others were hopeful for a future of uncertainty. We heard from guys who had been performing for years, and bands that are just now starting to get names heard. From indie rock to hip-hop, from hardcore to worship, the Christian music scene spoke back to us.

Realize that these answers are by the people making the music that you are listening to, and these are un-edited and real. The opinions expressed don’t always reflect ours, but we aren’t perfect either, right?

This week we will explore which part of the process artists enjoy the most when it comes to making and playing music.  Some people are strong song writers, and then others love to play their music. Some are torn. What we end up with is a series of artists talking about what they love about being a musician. Also this week, two new faces, Dowd from A Thousand Times Repent,and David from Echocast.

What is the best thing about making music?

a thousnd times repent dowd Dowd(guitar for Tribunal Records metal band A Thousand Times Repent) A Thousand Times Repent
With music each step is pretty necessary. I like all three and this is why. Writing is great because that is when you put all of your feelings and ideas into song form. I like recording because that is when all the hard work gets put down and you finally get to step outside from playing it and get to hear the whole product. I love performing cause that is when you get to take your music to the kids and let them hear what you have been hard at work on and also get to share the fact that we are a Christian band and nothing will change that.

christaylor Chris Taylor (BEC solo artist/song writer)                                            Chris Taylor
I prefer sitting in my room and recording ideas. Just being creative

johanna fellow Johanna Miller (keyboardist/singer for South Pawl pop/rock band Fellow) Fellow
I love that there are so many things you can say with lyrics that would never be accepted by the general public otherwise. Music really allows God to use us in ways we could never imagine.
Wow, I like it all but if I have to choose it would be performing. There’s nothing quite like seeing people touched by the music God gave you.

domicballi Dominic Balli (independent Reggae/hip-hop artist)                            Dominic Balli
I love recording cuz you can do whatever you want and really let the creativity fly in the studio. I lover performing because I get to relate to people on a personal level and communicate truth in a conversational way. I think sometimes it’s easier for people to receive truth when you’re looking then in the eyes. I love writing though because it’s where I get to paint the picture of what’s going on inside my heart mind and life.

brookewaggner Brooke Waggoner(solo indie/pop artist on SlowMoon Music)          Brooke Waggoner
I love writing the most! Performing can be really magical as well.. I just recently got done recording a new project and it was the most positive recording experience I’ve ever had and I enjoyed every moment!

daveleftpoorlybuitparachute Dave (half of Holdfast Records electro-house duo Poorly Built Parachute) Poorly Built Parachute
I like writing and performing, recording is stressful.

dirt DIRT (underground hip-hop artist and founder of Shadow Of The Locust) Dirt
The best thing about making the music is that I can get a small taste of what it was for God when He created the world. How excited He must of been, flowing with ideas, bursting at the seems to get them out. The only difference is (and its a BIG one!) that he awesomely created out of nothing! In his omnipotency and all-knowing way, He didn’t need anything but His presence and His Will and His authority to create.
We, as humans, need a pencil… a piece of paper…. some sound (which, again is created by ‘something else)…. God WAS and IS the ‘something else’. He is the music without the sound.

sethinfrontendervence Seth (singer for independent hard rock band Endeverance)                    Endeverance
I would have to say that the best thing about music is getting my heart out there and sharing it with people in a way I usually can’t. But I prefer all pieces of the musical process I don’t think you can have one without the other they all mesh together…

takeitbackdanielDaniel(guitarist for Facedown Records hardcore band Take It Back!) Take It Back - Can't Fight Robots
I think its safe to say we (Take It Back!) all prefer performing over anything. Being at a hardcore show where kids are singing along to your songs is really something that you cant compare to anything else.

amycourts Amy Courts (independent pop/folk artist)                                          Amy Courts
I love all of it, really, because different parts of who I am, at my core, go into each aspect. In the writing, I’m forced to dig into the depths and offer what’s there, however it looks or feels, and suffer (yet enjoy!) a sort of vulnerability found nowhere else. But when it comes out in song, it’s utter relief. In recording, I love the daunting task of taking a skeleton of a song and giving it muscle, tissue, skin, and a face by doing my best – with the help of gifted producers and musicians – to make a full body out of the bones. And the live performance is like icing on the cake, where I get to pour my heart out and share something very raw and real with people who may or may not “get” it. And there is always such deep satisfaction in finding and knowing the people with whom it resonates. A new community is born.

brandonsayyouwill Brandon (bass player for independent pop/rock band Say You Will)
Writing is like a puzzle frustrating yet satisfying. I love to write. Recording is pretty boring unless your recording and even then it gets old. Still satisfying tho. Performing is probably where we have the most fun. Interacting with the kids and showing our musics potential live is so exhilarating. At the same time it probably is the hardest to do b/c most shows are on tour and at our level tour is tough. Sleeping on floors, eating ravioli’s, and doing all of the work our selves kind of tough. haha.

the_welcome_wagon_-_0938-c Vito (half of Asthamic Kitty indie/folk band The Welcome Wagon) The Welcome Wagon
Performing our music—whether it be alone in our apartment, or in front of people—is probably what we like best. It’s us singing to one another and to God. That’s where the magic happens for us, and hopefully for others.
I do the writing alone, and I do like that process. It’s an electrifying thing to have a guitar in your hand, trying to fit sounds together and all of a sudden a melody line emerges alongside a chord change and you know it’s right. Recording is also fun, but stressful—that red light on the recording console is like the Eye of Sauron. But performing, for the most part, is the place where we become our band. When we play together we have to let go of all expectations and assumptions and all our ego and we sing and play and the transcendent stuff happens and the mistakes happen and we have to give it all to God. And because we are doing that together before God, it’s an intimate, wonderful thing.

echocastbandwb8David ( singer for independent nu-metal band Echocast)                     Echocast
Most musicians that I’m friends with love writing and recording above all else, I’m the complete opposite… My favorite part of making music is the actual performance, touring, presenting your music to a live audience…

heathstripsinirons Heath (bass player for Holdfast Records metal band In Irons)                  In Irons
It can all be very stressful, yet extremely fun at the same time. The writing process is definitely the hardest because we’re all throwing around different ideas and sometimes we don’t all agree and it can easily turn into an argument. But its very rewarding when you do actually come together and finish a song. Recording is very rough as well. It’s definitely the most tedious part about being in a band because you put so much hard work, money and time into it and you want to sound perfect. But there is nothing like listening to the finished product of your own songs for the first time. And performing live makes it all worth it. It can be stressful at times when you’re having to deal with all the technical difficulties but its definitely rewarding. We all just have fun doing every bit of it, to be completely honest.

bryanblondstreakabandon Bryan (bass player for Forefront Records pop/rock band Abandon) Abandon
Can i choose “D” all of the above? haha… If i had to pick just one it would definitely be Performing. That’s where all of the excitement is at, but i truly do LOVE writing. That’s the intimate part and there is nothing quite like strumming the first few chords to what you know will one day become a masterpiece.

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