Indie Music Monday Interviews

Articles from Indie Music Bus

Friday, September 21, 2012

Interview with Simplified - @Simplified_Band

In this edition of Road Trip, we interview the multi-award winning and very tour experienced, Simplified. With independently produced and other projects ranging  the years 2004-2012 and touring and gigging in venues from clubs and festivals like SunFest to NASCAR Rev’d Up in 2009. In fact, in just eight years since the band's inception, Simplified has not only performed more than 2,500 shows, but they have also earned the respect of such renown artists as O.A.R., whose saxophone player Jerry Depizzo produced their latest album. But don't be fooled. Simplified's journey hasn't always been an easy one. The band has done everything – from the writing, recording and even the distribution of their four albums - completely on their own. 
And now on to our interview with Chris Sheridan of Simplified conducted by Ced of Independent Music and Media.

  Thanks for taking the time to do this interview. You guys have a good vibe as artists and as friends. When was the band formed and how did you all come together?

Thank you Walt. Clee and I got together in 2002 and began playing acoustic shows around Charlotte. We started an open mic to meet other players because we wanted to form a band. We ended up performing with a few people in various groups and then we came across Chris Lynch. Through Lynch we met Tim Lail (former drummer) and we basically formed Simplified in 2003.

Enjoy music by Simplified

Were you each in other bands prior to Simplified and what did you learn from being in previous bands, that made this experience a better one?

Everybody had former projects before Simplified. I learned from being in previous bands that (light bulb)-You have to rehearse! Just kidding. If I’m speaking on behalf of everyone in the band I would say our fans make this band a great experience.

What was it like to do your first live performance together as a band?

Our first real live performance as the “official” Simplified was at The Visulite Theatre in Charlotte. I think we were all really stoked for the show because it’s such a great venue. I used to see a lot of artists there and I always wanted to play there. We were the first of 3 acts and I think we played in front of maybe 20 people. A few years later we sold The Visulite out when we did our cd release for “Elephant Sky”.

There has got to be the band mate that keeps you all in stitches. Which one of you is the class-clown of the group?

That’s a great question. I think we all have the tendency to take on that title depending on our moods. And maybe our level of intoxication.

Who are some of your musical influences?

Everyone in the band comes from a different background. We all listen to a wide variety of music and I think we are all influenced by many different artists. That’s what gives Simplified it’s “sound”.

Your sound can truly be considered eclectic and can not be placed in a box. How are you pulling so many elements into your songwriting, yet still keeping it uncluttered?

We never really sat down and discussed trying to go for a certain sound. I think we just do what we love and make the best decisions we can during the writing process. We come up with a lot of ideas and some of them turn into songs and some are shelved.

Photoshoot with Chris Austin and team 04/21/12

You guys are making music that makes people happy, want to dance, and sing along with your catchy lyrics. Keep up the great work and thanks again for chatting with us. Is there anything else that you would like to say to add?

Thank you for the kind words and for taking the time for the interview!

Special thanks to Ced

Band Members

Clee Laster – Vocalist/Guitar
Chris Sheridan – Lead Guitar/BG Vocals
Chris Lynch – Bass
Donnie Marple – Drums/Percussion