Oct. 06--LIMA -- It's all for the love of music.
For local and area bands, that one statement justifies all the sacrifices they have to make show after show. Most have their day jobs, like managing a restaurant, working as a pipefitter or working nights as a nurse. But all these musicians are willing to work around schedules, find child care, set up and tear down heavy sound equipment and more.
For Brother Believe Me, their origins go back seven years to when three guys, guitarist Jason Wheeler, bassist Josh Cole and self-proclaimed "lead percussionist" Brian Carpenter, started playing together. Through the years, they have added lead vocalist Adam Walls and "lead everything" guitarist Chris Brokamp to the lineup, and finding the right pieces has been essential for their longevity.
"You really have to do your homework though and talk to people about their family," Walls said. "What do you do on your days off? How do you feel about rehearsals? You have to dig down and see if it'll be a long-term fit."
Because almost every member of the band has a family to go with their day jobs, the band requires the committment of everyone, not just the players themselves.
"It boils down to a great support group with the wives," Carpenter said. "My oldest daughter helps out with the merchandise."
"I'm crediting our families for our ability to grow professionally," Walls added, "because it forces us to make sure we're not taking precious time away from our family as much as we can."
Another band that has shown staying power is Delphos' The Hipnotix. Formed by guitarist Jimi Goare in 2003, this band has also undergone various lineup changes but has continued to deliver. According to vocalist Jody Coil, it's all about loving what they do and having fun.
"We all know that we're not going to be famous," she said. "We're just out for the love of playing music."
One local group that is looking to make a bigger impact in the world of music is Stedic and the Groove, a reggae fusion band that for the past three year has grown in popularity in the region, even in areas one may not expect.
"They love us in those smaller towns like Celina and St. Marys," band manager Stacy Kohler said. "That really surprised me."
For vocalist Chris "Stedic" Henderson, his roots in island music go back to his grandfather, who emigrated from Trinidad and Tobago in 1972. While seeking to earn more notoriety, he also hopes to influence the culture here at home.
"I'm trying to build the culture of that movement of love, unity, happiness and good times here," he said.
Working with artists such as DJ Moe Moe, vocalists Shawna Jones and Gina Daughtry and others, Stedic and the Groove has seen their popularity grow immensely in recent years. They love playing to the smaller, local crowds, growing their fan base.
"I know the big venues can really get the blood going, but I think the smaller ones are the most important, because those are where you get your followers," Kohler said.
Sometimes that notoriety can come with a cost.
"Very rarely do we want to play anywhere around here because people think they can pay you $600 because you're local," Walls said, "and by the time you add up all the time you take away from your family, the wear and tear on your equipment and all the labor spent setting up and tearing down, it doesn't pay the bills."
The changing nature of music can also bring frustration.
"Everything's so technical with DJs, and music is going more computerized, so you can be a band with just two people," Coil said. "It's much less organic than it was 20 or 30 years ago."
Despite that, however, these local bands still go out and brave the long nights, all for the love of music.
"That's where I get my energy," Michael "DJ Moe Moe" Little said.
"If they're up front and enjoying themselves and loving what you do, that's what makes me feel good about what I'm doing," Carpenter said.
There is so much more to say about all of these bands, but ultimately the best way to connect with them is simply to give them the stage, show them some love, and let them sing us their story.
(c)2013 The Lima News (Lima, Ohio)
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