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Silent Season Interview

 

By: Nina McCarthy, Senior Music Journalist

Boston Rock Radio

 

 

I had the pleasure of getting to know the guys of the Boston based band Silent Season over dinner and drinks at Hard Rock Cafe, Boston.  We had planned on doing our interview over dinner, but they seated us next to a speaker blaring rock music. How dare they?!  It was a good chance to get acquainted anyway.  After we were all more relaxed, we headed to the Green Room to get down to business.

 

Thank you Jeremy Rae (vocals), David Pappalardo (drums), Brendan Sheehan (guitar), Anthony Puliafico, Jr. (guitar), and Jay Driscoll (bass) for a rockin’ night!

 

BRR:  The band formed in 2008.  Can you just give me a brief history of how it all began?

 

Jeremy:  Dave and I were in a project before all of this.  It wasn't going in the direction we wanted it to.  They cared about partying more than they cared about the actual music.  Me and Dave met at a Wendy’s and we were talking about how we wanted to form a project that was melodic, yet hard.  From there we started to try to get people to join.  Brendan happened to be our first guitarist who we tried out and he stuck.  We've had him ever since.  We've had a bunch of members ever since, but now we have our final lineup, so we're happy about that.

 

BRR:  I really liked the inspiration behind the band name.  Can you tell me about that?

 

Dave:  I point to myself, because we were in my basement and we were sitting there trying to figure out a name and I said, “ Why don't we call ourselves Silent Season?”  The guys wanted to know why.  I think it's a compelling case because at the time we came out with the style of music we were going for, there weren't many bands in the genre.  It was kind of dying out, so we were hoping to get into the scene and help and see what we could to do to start that back up and we were hoping for other bands to come out with that style.  It was kind of quiet.  There was really nothing going on from the band area and the industry in general, so we thought it was appropriate. Ever since then we've felt strongly that it does represent what we do and we're trying to put a positive message out there and let people know that this style of music is still current and people still enjoy it, and keep moving forward with it.

 

BRR:  Speaking of your message, your bio says you have a forthright message.  Can you elaborate more on that?

 

Jeremy:  We try to write about things that are relevant and have a positive message.  There's always a subject matter that may not start off being positive, like the song “The Negative,” but then it kind of twists into a positive message, like you can turn this around and become not so negative and overcome things.  I think that's important because you want to connect with your audience and they don't want to just hear whine, whine, whine, me, me me.  They want to hear about how you got over that, overcame that.  With recent deaths like Chester and Chris Cornell, I feel like it's really important for people to know that you can work your way out of these things and that you can overcome them.  That's kind of what we're all about.

 

BRR:  Boston has a very saturated and competitive music scene, especially rock and metal.  What do you think Silent Season did different to get noticed and get tours and so forth?

 

Dave:  We started out kind of grassroots and we did everything we could to get out there.  Over time, we've worked with several different teams to get out there and come up with some concepts to come out with some kind of organic or different vision for the band and how do we portray that to the audience.  There are some bands that stay, rightfully so, in their sound and they're focused on one thing.   I think for us, like Jeremy hinted earlier, we kind of go up and down.  We have different messages.  We have have soft songs, heavy songs.  We do different things and appeal to a wider audience and I think that helps a band become very successful.  You can speak to more people and I think if you have the right message, the right sound and you can bring those things together, you can be unique in your own way.

 

BRR:  How has your music evolved since the beginning?

 

Jeremy:  I think that we tried to make it different from each other in general.  We have different influences, different things going on in our lives.  It's almost like the evolution of how our lives are changing and how we are progressing as a band.  Like “The Negative” for instance, it's definitely our heaviest song yet and we tried to do some things that we haven't done in the past, a heavier vibe. I think we always strive to do something new and exciting.

 

BRR:  You've shared the stage with some big names over the years.  Who are some of your favorites or some of your best memories?

 

Everyone:  Sevendust!

 

Anthony:  I wasn't a part of that but I would have appreciated it.

 

Dave:  Your second show, we opened for Trapt at The Middle East downstairs  and that was a great night.  He had a big smile on his face.

 

Anthony:  That was special!  Trapt is definitely a baby we can all pull from.  When they first came out, they kind of helped the rock scene, like you said, it was the “silent season” and it was dark and they kind of helped bring that rock mainstream.

 

BRR:  In August, you released a new song, which you referenced, “The Negative.”  What has been the response?

 

Jeremy:  So far it's been really good.  A lot of people were like, “Wow, this is awesome.  We really didn't expect you guys to come out with something so heavy!”  We have been told on tour that people wanted to hear something a little heavier than what we were doing.  Then you have the people who really, really like the songs like, “Waiting" and “ If You Lead Me On” and they want to hear more of that.  The truth is, we're coming out with more of that in the EP, but the overall vibe of “The Negative” has been great and I think everyone is really digging it so far.

 

Dave:  There's even a little EDM on it, some electronic stuff.

 

BRR:  I definitely like the variety.  Now for someone who often fights negative thoughts, I really enjoyed the lyric video on YouTube for “The Negative.”  Tell me about the inspiration behind the song.

 

Jeremy:  I battle having negative thoughts all the time.  I have anxiety and have had depression in the past and those are all very relevant things to a lot of people and a lot of people feel that.  Music happens to be one way that I overcome feeling negative, along with my band mates and my friends, obviously.  That is something I struggle with and try to overcome it with music.  I guess that's kind of where I was headed with it and that everything is fixable.  You're not always going to be broken and you're not always going to have those thoughts.  You just have to keep trying to overcome them and things will get better.

 

BRR:  So true! I think that's why I can relate because I also struggle with anxiety.  Is there an EP or full album currently in the making?

 

Dave:  EP, 5 song.

 

Jeremy:  We're working on a full album for the future, but right now it's just an EP that we are planning on coming out with

 

BRR:  What's the anticipated release date of the EP?

 

Dave:  We talk about by the end of the year.  We never stop writing.

 

Brendan:  We had like 20 different ideas on a white board for this 5 song EP.  We came up with fake names just so we could remember them, like Smurf, Eggplant.  It was so hard to pick which one we were going to work on next.  With the amount of money we had, we said, “Let's do an EP.”  We're still going. We have like 6 or 7 more ideas after this.

 

Anthony:  There's at least 30 ideas or more floating out there.

 

Brendan:  I'm not counting the ones before that!

 

Dave:  I know a lot of bands say we have 40 or 50 songs, but we do!  We go back to songs and we go back and forth and whatever is feeling right with the whole group and whatever we are feeling at the moment, we go full force.

 

Jeremy:  We read everything on social media, like people asking for the new material and what's taking so long.  The material is paramount to our band and what we stand for, so we're trying to get the best representation of us to everybody.

 

BRR:  You don't want to put it out just to get it out there.

 

Jeremy:  Exactly.

 

Dave:  That's my problem.  That's what makes this good though because some of us want it out soon and some of us want to keep working it, so it's a good balance.  We meet our deadlines but we also focus on getting quality out there.

 

Jeremy:  Some things we may really enjoy, give it a week or two and we don't and realize it was just a “moment” thing.  But the ones that stand out after a couple of weeks, we know there's really something there.

 

BRR:  I've heard bands say too, it has to be a song that you want to play over and over again.

 

Dave:  Definitely.

 

BRR:  What's your outlook on the record industry today?

 

Jeremy: (after a debate about who cares to answer this one.) It was said about a year ago that, “Rock is dead!”  They go through these things where they say this is dead, that's dead, blah, blah blah.  But rock is always going to be there and I feel like right now is a great time for rock because it seems like there are a lot of bands coming back and a lot of new bands joining.  I think that the industry could definitely explode with a lot of rock bands right now.  I think it's a good time for that for sure.

 

BRR:  Without giving away all your secrets, what advice would you give to fellow bands as far as getting gigs and airplay?  You guys are great with promotion, by the way.

 

Dave:  Thank you.  I think what I would advise to some up and coming bands and some of the newer bands out there, get your music set, work to put out your best material, and when you're ready to go forth to the audience, hire a team of people to really help and believe in you and will support you if you're not signed.  We did the same thing over the years.  We've had people work with us, whether it was a booking agent, a radio rep, or anyone else helping on the marketing side.  Marketing, promotions, radio, distribution of your CD whether it be on CD Baby, iTunes or whatever is all that matters. Playing out a lot really does matter too.  That's how you build your fan base.  I know a lot of bands get discouraged because they go to a bar and play for 10 people, but we've been there several times.  We've traveled to far states.  We've played out in South Dakota and we opened up the fest with Red, 10 Years, and Hinder and there were a good amount of people there, but the field wasn't full.  That's a perfect example though, you go out there and you give it your all.  You never know who is going to be there so you play your best.  I would recommend to bands to have a team to help you out.  I feel like going back to your other question about the industry for a moment.  I think, for us, we still believe in labels because it's hard to get distribution on your own.  That's a key thing.  You really need a full team helping you with everything and a label will provide you with the service.  We did it on our own for some things but with a relationship with a label I think it is impactful and powerful and I think a lot of bands could still benefit from it still.  You can get a deal that makes sense for your band.  It's not always a negative situation.

 

Jeremy:  One more thing about that, it's all about trial and error. You will never get it right the first time and if you do, you're very lucky.

 

BRR:  For potential fans, why should they take a listen to your music and attend a live show?

 

Anthony:  I think we offer something for everybody.  We all pull from an eclectic background of music from rock, metal and sometimes pop.  We try to get everything in there.  The melody and the message is most important.  We have fun with it and I think that shines through.

 

BRR:  Anything else you'd like to share as far as new merch, upcoming shows, or just something you'd like to say to your fans?

 

Dave:  EP is coming!

 

Anthony:  We're not dead yet.

 

Dave:  We appreciate everyone's continued support.  Thank you for coming to the shows, buying the music, supporting us.  We promise we'll reciprocate.   Keep doing it.  We're hoping for big things this coming year.  As Jeremy was saying, rock is definitely on the upswing.  There's a lot of great things going on.

 

BRR:  I'll definitely be keeping my eyes and ears on you guys!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Silent Season Webpage

 

https://www.facebook.com/SilentSeasonMusic/

 

(A special thank you to the band manager, John Saccardo, Jr., SacConsult Group for making it all run smoothly.)

 

© Boston Rock Radio 2017

 

 

 

 

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