Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dream House

Name: Dream House

What do you do?
We’re four friends who have been playing separately and together for a long time and recently decided to collaborate as a band. Robert, Molly, Lisa, and Andrew. Hi.

Where can we find your work?
The internet. - 
We also play shows here and there in the Bay Area.

What inspires you to create and how do you keep motivated when things get tough?
We are inspired by a lot of different things. Most of our songs are very personal, inspired by intense emotions or experiences. Our songs can be celebrations or lamentations of life and all of its forms. We are also all inspired by each other.

What do you think is more important content/finished product or technique/process? 
Well, our songs are never really completely finished. We haven’t recorded an album yet, so we don’t really have any finished products that we can look at and say: “awesome that’s done, let’s move on.” I think we all try to keep the songs constantly evolving, and we’re always bringing in new instruments or parts. If we get to the point with a song where we feel like we’ve done everything, we usually stop playing it and focus more on newer material. And maybe we’ll come back to it later and play it in a new context.

Who are some people who influence and/or inspire you?
Right now I (Robert) am most inspired by my friends. There’s so much talent in San Jose. It’s enough for me to be constantly inspired and motivated to do more.

I (Molly) think we all feel similarly. Our best work is done in collaboration, and I feel inspired and lucky to know incredibly talented people who I want to work with and who want to work with me.

If you could be any fictional character who would you be?

When do you get your best ideas?
In the morning with a cup of coffee. Writing songs is something that sort of needs to happen for us. We need it to process things on a certain level that we can’t get at in any other way really. It’s cathartic. That’s why all of our songs are so deeply personal and can sound sort of cryptic. It’s because they are these weird little conversations we’re having with ourselves, these imageries and explanations that are incredibly meaningful in ways that are difficult to explain.

What materials/tools do you use most to create your work?
We have a couple of acoustic guitars, a ukulele, a drum kit, violin, an electric guitar, a harmonium, and some other stuff. We use our phones a lot to record little bits and pieces of a song that we like and know we will forget in a few days. We do that a lot with vocal harmonies. We also have started recording a little bit in my bedroom using Ableton Live.

Are you self taught or formally educated? How do you think that has influenced or affected your work?
Most of us are self-taught. Lisa is formally trained on the violin, and Molly has been formally trained as a singer. Our songwriting process is all about feeling things out and playing by ear. We rarely even talk about what notes we’re playing.

What would your creative work taste like?
Molly brings those little Trader Joe’s cookies to a lot of our rehearsals. So I guess like that. And oatmeal stout.
We also have a favorite band snack that we’ve come to associate with Dream House: pretzels with chocolate chips and M&M’s baked inside. They’re delicious treats made by one of our dear friends. They’re highly addictive.

When you are not creating what do you like to do?
Robert: I have a few different music projects I’m working on. I also love gardening and just hanging out in general.

Molly: I write and do a lot of theatre projects, along with some other music projects. I don’t think that counts as not creating, but it takes up most of my time!

Andrew: I’m studying Counseling Psychology at Santa Clara University, with a particular interest in mindfulness. Science is a creative pursuit too!

How did you learn to access your creative talents and gain the confidence to put it out there for everyone to experience?
We’ve all been performing our art in one way or another for a long time. Dream house actually started as a totally different project. There used to be way more of us (like 8 people I think) but some moved away and now it’s only the four of us. It can somehow still be just as hard to coordinate rehearsals though. We played some shows as that iteration of the band, and got accustomed to performing with like 6 or 7 other people on stage with us, so it was never that intimidating. Also, I think we’re constantly reminded of the fact that a supportive community of friends and other musicians surrounds us, and that makes us even more excited about sharing our work and hearing their work!

What advice would you give others just beginning their creative adventures?
Make it nasty!

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