Friday, July 16, 2010

Interview transcript: Honeymoon

I keep trying to find the right term or phrase for Honeymoon.
When they performed at The Rubber Chicken Poetry Slam last month, I joked that they were "Wilson Phillips on steroids." That was wrong.
The “Super Friends” also comes to mind, given that the four members, Sarah Bollwinkel, Christina Bailey, Lauren Shera and Andrea Blunt all have had local success as solo artists and separate group projects. That might be too obvious.
For now, it's probably best to leave it alone and let the music speak for itself. Charming, intelligent, indie rock and pop that dabbles in folk and Americana.
These four women, backed by an equally gifted rhythm section of Matt Bailey and Matt Bollwinkel (also known as "The Matts") could represent a sea change in the local indie music scene. They're just that powerful.
Honeymoon has a slew of upcoming dates, which you can learn more about at
On to the interview transcript:

Q: Let's talk about the convergence here, because there's way too much, I'm not even going to call it energy, there's too much female power going on here.

Lauren: You can call it estrogen. Call it what it is.

Sarah: Estrogen sandwich.

Q: Talk about coming together and this alliance. It's pretty powerful.

Sarah: There's a few ways we could swing this.

Christina: We all are connected in many different way, but I think that he six of us really started in October of last year. We sent a Facebook email to each other and said lets get together and make one song. And then we thought we could use it as an experiment in an afternoon — write a song and then we could post it on our individual blogs.

Sarah: This was a quick collaboration.

Christina: Yeah, it was just a project that would hopefully spark interest in each one of us separately, as well as together. And as soon as we got into a room, and you all can stop me if I'm wrong, but it felt like the chemistry was there. We all really liked each other, even though, I didn't really know you at all (points to Lauren).

Lauren: I didn't know you two (points to Christina and Sarah)

Christina: And it was just really easy. We ended up writing our first tune that we wrote a couple months ago in like a five-hour period...

Sarah: A couple of bottles of wine and some songs later...

Andrea: Under the title Gearl Jam.

Sarah: That's another fun fact. We were almost named Gearl Jam, spelled like Pearl Jam. But we had to put the kibosh on that. We don't know any Pearl Jam songs

Lauren: And everybody loved the crap out of that name.

Matt Bollwinkel: It would have been perfect if we were a Pearl Jam cover band.

Q: Maybe that will be a one off show...

Sarah: That's going to be a special, hidden, unadvertised performance.

Matt Bollwinkel:
Gearl Jam does "10."

Q: Where did the relationships start:

Lauren: We had all heard each others music because we live in a tiny town that at the time that didn't have a music venue to play at. I had heard Sarah and Christina and The Matts playing Big American Family and loved it. And we had tried scheduling a show together, which never happened because Monterey Live closed.
And I knew Andrea from the Monterey Live scene. And her and I kind of orbited around each others musical circles for a while. And we started playing together last August and Andrea started accompanying me at my solo shows.

Andrea: I knew Sara from Fog Box at CSUMB.

Sara: We knew each other from Fog Box, my old record label at CSUMB. She was my musical director/intern, because I had all interns because I couldn't pay anyone. She kind of stuck by me all those years at Fog Box.
And that's how I met Christina. She came to a Fog Box audition. She was with my brother.

Matt Bollwinkel: She happened to be married to your brother (laughs).

Sara: Happened to be. That's a side story. We'll get into that later. (Turns to her husband, Matt Bollwinkel) And I knew you from having a crush on you. And I knew Lauren primarily from the shows, but I also worked with her dad.

Andrea: And we recorded at the same recording studio, which is owned by a good friend of ours, that we're now all recording with as honeymoon. So I had heard rave reviews about Big American Family, and that's when I went to check them out.

Sarah: And we heard that lauren and andrea were playing togheter, and we were horribly jealous, adn that's when we sent them an e-mail saying you have to play with us.

Matt Bailey: Who said jealousy wasn't a virtue? (laughs).

Andrea: And I was so horrified, I was so intimidated.

Christina: We were all really nervous.

Lauren: It was really nerve wracking. ..

Q: This project started off casually after the Facebook connection. But you guys got some pretty strong gigs, opening for Jackie Green in May...

Sarah: Yeah, in Petaluma. We did the Jackie Green date. That was our first show, ever, in front of people. Sold out.

Q: How did you swing that?

Andrea: He's represented by our agency.

Sarah: Yeah we have an agency, this is a newer development, granted we are a newer development. But that all kind of happened really quick. The interest sparked really fast.

Christina: The idea of us, even without us playing live together, merited a lot of attention.

Lauren: That's why we decided to (get together). We had that one day when we wrote together, and that was back in like October, November, and we didn't play again until January. And I had mentioned earlier that day to my father, who was in the industry, that I was going over to play music with all of you guys,and it had been a while, but we'd done it once before and we'd written this great song and I was bummed I hadn't played together again between but I was excited to play again. And he was excited about it.

Sarah: He called me up into his office — I work for the agency. I work for Paradigm (Monterey-based entertainment agency). I thought I was in trouble, but he basically brought me up there to share how excited he was about the idea, which was great...

Lauren: Because when we got together that night, we kind of talked about it, like are we going to do it, people are excited, nothing has even happened

Sarah: And we had the hands in moment ...

Q: Talk about the sound...

Sarah: In my head, Laruen Shera is one of the best friggen' folk singer/writers in the area,. That's very heavy in our sound. I would say one of the primary features is the folk aspect.
And then we have the the Elton John factor over here with Andrea, who's the piano ‘Whoa-Man.’ She can do whatever she wants. So we have that aspect, which makes things hard sometimes.
And then Christina definitely has the pop sensibility...

Andrea: And with Big American Family, it's got everything...

Sarah: It's like pop rock, it's like folk, indie, Americana... Folkacana. Yeah, that's it. I like it because it sounds like Chaka Khan-a. Folkacana.

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