Sunphaser – Norman Music Festival
Alternative rock band, Sunphaser, speaks with me in this Norman Music Festival performer question and answer session. Sunphaser will perform at the Red Brick Bar on Thursday, April 27, 2017, at 7:30 pm. Since this is the festival’s tenth year, here are ten questions to get to know them as answered by brothers, Aidan and Sam McCool, and Suzannah Masura.
1. To get people to know you, how would you describe yourself and your music?
SAM: Easy going on the outside, tightly wound on the inside! My preferred style is bold and energetic, and I think that’s pretty descriptive of Sunphaser as a whole.
SUZANNAH: I’d describe myself as easy-going, and my music as personal and reflective of myself.
AIDAN: I’m an extroverted moron. As for our music, I’d call it a hodgepodge of Stoner rock, Psych rock, and Alternative.
2. What song would you like a person who hasn’t heard your music listen to first?
SAM: Probably Can’t You Make You Mine. It’s kind of a summation of all the styles we draw from. A little psych rock, a little stoner rock, and a little funk.
SUZANNAH: I’d probably show them Roll Call. It’s one of the first songs we wrote together, and it’s one where everyone in the band gets their own moment to show off a little bit.
AIDAN: We have a few that we haven’t recorded yet that I’d like people to hear, but I’d pick Roll Call. We’re all really proud of that one.
3. What’s your song writing process?
SAM: Aidan will bring in a riff, he and I will jam on it until we get a rough song structure built up, and then Suzannah will write the melody and lyrics!
SUZANNAH: Aidan, our bassist, will usually bring in a riff on his bass, and we’ll all sit down and work with it. Sam, our drummer, is really good about coming up with his portion of the song on the spot, while I usually record the song and write lyrics to it at home.
AIDAN: I usually write a riff or a portion of the song and bring it in to Sam. We both come up with the rest of the parts by bouncing ideas off of each other then we give the finished product to Suzannah.
4. What are your thoughts on the Norman Music Festival?
SAM: I’ve been attending for 5-6 years now, and it’s always a blast. Everyone is just out to have a good time and enjoy music, and it makes for a really friendly atmosphere.
SUZANNAH: I’ve been both attending and playing at the Norman Music Festival for years now, and it’s probably the part of the year in Oklahoma that I look forward to the most.
AIDAN: I love it. I’ve gone every year since 2012. It’s great hearing all the local bands along with the touring bands. I’m especially excited for Thee oh sees.
5. In general, what inspires you?
SAM: To play music? That feeling you get on stage when your music really resonates with the crowd. It’s a kind of positive feedback loop, you know? The crowd feels it and starts grooving, so you feel it and play with more energy, so the crowd feels it even more. The pursuit of that feeling is probably what drives me.
SUZANNAH: Music! Music is my biggest inspiration, but outside of that, probably both books and art.
AIDAN: This is kinda a cop out but other people. When I’m in a laid back kind of setting just jamming with friends is usually when my best ideas come out. I’m still pretty young and I’m an even younger writer so I’m still figuring out what really opens up my mind.
6. You’ve just been offered an all expenses paid trip. Where would you go?
SAM: Machu Picchu. Or Ireland.
SUZANNAH: That’s a tough one. Probably France, I’ve always wanted to see the Palace of Versailles.
AIDAN: Tough question. But if I have to pick it’d be somewhere in the Pacific Northwest.
7. Any plans while you’re in the Norman area?
SAM: I live around here, so not really! Just to play music and have a good time.
SUZANNAH: I live in the Norman area! I’m definitely going to hang out around the festival and listen to other bands, it’s the best part (other than performing)!
AIDAN: We all live in or around Norman but we all plan on spending a lot of time at the festival.
8. Anything else you want the public to know about you?
SAM: Suzannah has 11 toes
SUZANNAH: I love music and I’m just so genuinely excited to be performing.
AIDAN: I paid a man 1 dollar to insult someone once.
9. What do yo think should be the Ninth Wonder of the World?
SAM: The Internet. The ability to communicate across the world in seconds? Easy information sharing? Used properly, the internet could help create a better world. But for now, we have memes….
SUZANNAH: Probably the human species as a whole, I suppose. We’re pretty weird and mysterious.
AIDAN: Dubai probably.
10. What was the most extreme adventure you’ve had?
SAM: I went to Texas once.
SUZANNAH: Probably getting to play at NMF!
AIDAN: I went to Baton Rouge once. For a cat.