From the moment my parents brought me home from the hospital, I’ve always had a dog as a member of the family. For me, the hardest part of moving a away for college wasn’t coping with a shoebox dorm or a rotating cast of crazy roommates. It was learning how to deal with coming home without being greeted to waggy tails and that unconditional loyalty and affection only your dog knows how to give. So after living in various Boston-area apartments for almost 6 years where dog ownership wasn’t practical given my living situation (or allowed by the lease) I almost gave up on the idea of ever being able to have a dog of my own. To stick a bigger knife in your heart, my family in PA lost the two dogs I knew most of my life in two years back-to-back while I was going to school and working in New England. Read more…
A bit over a year ago I reconnected with an acquaintance from college who plays drums and decided to start a band with a few other friends. I felt like it was a now or never sort of thing for me to do at the time. Despite being a self-proclaimed music nerd, I’ve been playing guitar for over a decade and never found the right mix of people to write and play music with regularly up until that point. For me, it was very difficult to find the right balance of A. “can I effectively write and play music with these people?” and B. ”do I like being around them?” Luckily with Sleep Crimes the answers are yes and yes – otherwise I doubt we’d make it to this point.
Now maybe you’re sitting there asking: Well why didn’t you just record and perform on your own, Sam? I personally never went down the the solo singer-songwriter path because I wanted to be part of something bigger, not be forced to take up the entire spotlight. I also had trouble finishing anything I started when it came to writing music – either I would never know how to end things or figure out how to fit the music over lyrics (and vice versa). I always had fragments of songs that I could never fully piece together into a finished product. So I would just play for myself – improvise alone, for years, waiting to find the right group. I wasn’t going to be in a band for the sake of being in the band…the right pieces needed to fall into place for it to happen.
Since the end of the year is mere days away, it’s the time of year where people look back on the past 12 months and try to figure out how they’ve shaped their lives. I’m happy to say that 2012 was actually an incredibly positive year for me. I accomplished a lot – started a band, made a major career change, rescued the most adorable mutt, made new friends, reconnected with old ones, got involved in local government….the list goes on.
The rumors are true. I’m playing guitar in an actual band now. It even has a name and a stupid subgenre! The name being Sleep Crimes; the genre being “surf doom.” It’s kind of remarkable that I haven’t been in a band since around high school, but Boston city life makes starting such projects a tough task. The story of the formation involves a bizarre ride on the #1 bus and working the old Sam Coren charm to sweet talk a bandless drummer into getting something going.
When you put four terrible music nerds together in the same room with a bunch of instruments the songs practically write themselves. We’re having lots of fun and plan to play some gigs around New England over the summer with the first one being an Allston DIY show in July. Here’s a taste of what we’ve been doing…working on getting some demo recordings together: