Feature for July / August 2016
Band Name: The Luau Cinders
Genre: We tend to say Instrumental Surf/Rock. We’re not a pure surf band, but that’s a big part of who we are.
Geographical Area: The Baltimore-Washington DC corridor. We laugh because we’re out of Bethesda Maryland, which would usually classify us as a DC band, but all of our gigs so far have been up I-95.
Interview with: Will Horning by email on July 1, 2016
1. What is the current line-up of your band?
Brett Guizzetti, guitar
Michael Bennet, guitar
Bob Primosch, drums
Will Horning, bass
2. How and when did you get started with your band?
After my first band broke up in 2011, I started posting the ads on Craigslist again. Brett and I had actually been talking early in the process, but never could seem to get anything started. In the summer of 2015, Michael and Bob got a hold of me. They had been playing together in other bands, but wanted to move into the surf world. Steve was our first guitarist, but he got the opportunity to join a jazz project and didn’t feel he had the time to juggle both. Posted the ad yet again, and Brett popped back up. We’ve been making noise ever since.
3. What bands or music have influenced you most?
All of us kind of take after different parts of the genre. I’m more into the modern surf world. The Ghastly Ones, the Atomic Mosquitos. There’s a lot of love for Los Straitjackets. The other guys are a bit more in to the first wave, early surf and instrumental music as well. Handful of other bands: The Grateful Dead. The Beatles. Faces. Stiff Little Fingers. Spinal Tap. The Wonders. The Ventures. Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet. The Pixies. Dead Kennedys.
4. What is the break down of cover vs. original material in your live shows and/or recordings?
We’re at about 3-1 covers/originals. Brett and Mike are working on new songs, even as we speak.
5. What recording have you done?
None, yet. We’re looking at releasing something this year, though.
6. What kind of gear do you use?
I play a Fender Precision bass, through a Hartke amp. MXR Fuzz and Octave pedals. I run samples through a Digitech Jamman. Michael plays a Jazzmaster and a Telecaster, through Vox and Fender amps. He’s starting to delve into the pedal world. Brett plays a Strat and a Jazzmaster through a Fender Blues Jr. and/or Vox Pathfinder 15r amps and loves getting weird sounds out with the assistance of his Catalinbread Belle Epoch and EarthQuaker Devices Rainbow Machine. Bob plays Pearl drums, Zildjian and Paiste cymbals.
7. What is your band’s favorite food/beverage?
I dearly love my Guinness. (Brett and Michael enjoy the occasional IPA) Also, those classic surf consumables, Mai Tais and fish tacos. (Bob: “Fried chicken!!”)
8. How do you get gigs?
Good question, and one I’m still learning. The few we’ve had (or have scheduled) have been through personal contacts of the various members. See #9 for a continuation.
9. What are the difficulties you find playing your kind of music in your area?
Landing gigs. I’ve been very frustrated by the amount of non-returned emails that I’ve had. There’s a small but growing surf scene in the DC/Baltimore area, so hopefully as we start to build our name, more opportunities will present themselves.
10. What positive attributes does your band have that sets you apart from other bands (of any genre)?
We play quite a few covers, but not the usual hit parade. We’ve tried to go deep into the lesser known surf songs when possible.
11. What have you found to be the single most effective promotional tool you’ve used to further your band’s musical path?
Facebook is king at the moment.
12. What’s the most interesting performance experience you’ve had?
The two gigs we’ve had so far have been fairly sedate, from an experience standpoint. Probably the décor of the two bars we’ve played. Both have been fairly….entertaining. (50 Shades of Santa…..all I’m saying)
13. What do you hope to get out of being a NESMA member?
The opportunity to help build a strong, active, and thriving surf community on the east coast. California has it by default, but we have the potential to create something similar here.
14. Anything else?
Anything worth doing is worth doing badly.