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Band Crush: TAB the Band

May 27, 2010

TAB the Band (L-R Adrian Perry, Tony Perry, Lou Jannetty, Ben Tileston) have been all over the map both literally and figuratively. They have been featured in major media outlets — Rolling Stone, Spin, mtvU, radio across the country (and of course Boston Band Crush); and they have toured in support of/opened for the likes of Stone Temple Pilots, Art Brut, Modest Mouse, State Radio, and Bang Camaro just to name a few. They overcome a certain pesky elephant in their room by remaining true to their DIY aesthetic and by writing great songs — proving them more than just that band related to that guy, if not quite yet releasing them from that shadow here in Boston. Take note though, Boston — they really effing rock.

TAB have also recently taken to fundraising for for their upcoming UK tour as well as the Red Cross to provide additional earthquake relief in Haiti. Click here to donate!

I asked the band how they manage to pull it all off:

BBC: You guys have been relentless the past few years — headlining your own tours, touring support for Stone Temple Pilots, not to mention the garnering of a vast sea of press, radio, and television spots. What do you think is in store for you this year?

Adrian: Beyond the UK jaunt with STP in June, and a few other shows this summer, we’re planning to do some significant touring in the fall. We’re going to start recording some new songs as well; we’ve been writing a lot in the past few months.

BBC: You seem to always have a light-hearted and humorous attitude on at all times – in your music video for Where She Was On Monday, your mtvU appearance, and across all other platforms. How do you manage to maintain that persona so much of the time, and have there been any truly trying moments during your time as a band?

Lou: If it wasn’t fun and kept me optimistic then why bother? We are always having fun and that’s important. I guess the most trying moment is our present situation. We are trying to get across the pond to do a run with STP in the UK, but we dont have the funds to do that. We have set up a Pledge account where fans, friends, and family can pledge some dough which goes to the band and the Red Cross. In return the pledges get all sorts of neat prizes. The link to do that is here:

Adrian: Agree with Lou completely. Right now, our biggest battle is a financial one. Funding yourself has its advantages, like total autonomy, but the drawbacks are obvious. As Biggie said: “Mo Money, Mo Problems.” Or as I like to say “No Money, Big Problems.”

Tony: I think that it is important to keep it fresh and fun. we have to spend a lot of time together and having fun is very important to keeping us sane. We also like to let our personalities shine through in what we create like our videos and music. Once you start becoming too serious then it tends to become not as much fun. So it is just balancing the “getting shit done” and having fun. I think we do a pretty good job of it.

BBC: You have toured the globe extensively, played shows huge and tiny, headlined and opened – where was your single most favorite show you have played?

Lou: My favorite show was in Austin during SxSW. We got to open for STP (Stone Temple Pilots) in the Austin Music Hall and just the combination of being there and starting our second run with STP and being back on a big stage with a nice sound system everything just fell into place. The crowd was great and we felt like we played a real rock and roll show.

Adrian: Opening for Modest Mouse at Terminal 5 in NYC was a highlight for me. Great to get embraced by that crowd and I’m a huge MM fan. Also the SXSW show with STP this year was awesome. We spent the rest of that week walking around Austin feeling like big shots, though that was probably more the alcohol than anything.

Tony: That is a tough one. I would have to go with the first time we went out with STP. We got to play with both them and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. BRMC has been one of my favorite bands since their first record came out. So playing with them was super awesome and to top it off they were the coolest dudes (and chick).

Ben: I would have to go with Adrian on this one, I had never gotten to see Modest Mouse live before and when I found out that the first time would be because we were opening for them I nearly pissed my pantelones. We got an amazing reaction from the crowd which was 1,000 strong at least even for us, the first of three openers.

BBC: Clearly you recognize that the old way of the music distribution has fallen by the wayside. You are currently fundraising for your UK tour in June and Haiti relief with which fans can follow you on your tour through a vast array of media you send them when they make a pledge. Where do you see the music industry headed in this regard, and how do you plan on fitting in?

Adrian: There are basically no barriers to entry anymore for musicians. Everyone can get online, promote themselves and distribute their music. The real game of it now is getting attention. Press and marketing are very important and are an essential part to playing in a band these days. It’s more entrepreneurial than ever. It’s not enough to be good musicians. Luckily, I think we have a lot to offer in terms of bringing in our other talents to the band (i.e. capitalizing on Lou’s artistic creations, or the humor of the band to create interesting video content, or Tony’s car racing, or Ben’s short-brimmed hats). You have to capitalize on everything like that, AND still be putting on great shows, and writing the best songs you can. Pledge Music is just the latest innovation for how bands will market and promote themselves in the “new era” of the music biz.

BBC: What Boston bands are you crushing on right now?

Lou: Pretty&Nice, Apollo Sunshine, Viva Viva
Adrian: The Modern Lovers
Tony: Drug Rug, Township, and Passion Pit
Ben: Passion Pit, Dropkick Murphy’s, Prob Cause

Click to buy Discography:

Don’t miss TAB the Band this Saturday at the Middle East Upstairs! Enter to win a pair of free tickets to their show this Saturday, May 26 at the Middle East Upstairs through yours truly (just e-mail with the subject line “TAB”). Additionally, the first 50 folks to make it to the show get not 1, but 2 free Narragansett beers.

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