INTERVIEW: X Wire

Pic by M. Eastwood

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Bryce K – We’ve been doing pretty well, we’re working on a lot of new material and trying to perform as much as possible. 

Dax C – As a band, we have been doing alright. We’ve been writing more often and getting more rehearsals in as well as hanging out from time to time.

So as COVID has been affecting everyone, the entertainment industry (and that includes bands and musicians) have been the most affected – how have you gone on managing the situation?

BK – The pandemic has definitely been a huge obstacle music wise because most venues are closed due to health guidelines so it’s hard to play gigs anymore. That being said, in X Wire we’re making the most of the situation, and since people can’t come out to shows, we’re bringing the music to them. We’ve done quite a few “Jam in the Ram” shows where we go to 4-6 locations in a day playing for as many people as possible. That’s been an extremely rewarding experience for all of us because for most of the people we play for, it’s the first time they’ve heard live music since March, so it’s a great time for ourselves and our audience. 

As a teen band many may argue you don’t have it as difficult as others with family and what not – would you say this has been the case? Have you guys been striving to stay together or actually this current situation has served as a test to harden the band’s bond?

BK – COVID hasn’t really affected our relationship or progress as a band which is great, but I wouldn’t say it hasn’t been difficult for any us personally. For me, my senior year of high school was cut in half. For Dax, Julian, and I, we were stripped of the biggest gig we’ve ever been offered: playing at the Staples Center for a Kings game, just days after lockdown was put in place. The pandemic has been difficult for everyone, but we’re still able to enjoy ourselves even though what we can do is restricted.

Liam E – The pandemic forced me to stay inside and improve my playing. It made me work on a lot of things I didn’t want to work on but I think overall it made me a better musician.

Speaking of striving and gigs, I understand you have a new series coming up – how did you come up with the idea for “Jam in the Ram”?

DC – Jam in the Ram was an idea that sprouted from when a neighbor of mine was having a drive by birthday party. The woman having the birthday is heavy into music as a singer songwriter, so I thought of putting my drum kit in the back of truck and driving by with that instead. Needless to say, we had a pretty amazing reaction from her and the neighbors. And then when we realized there was nowhere to play  I applied the concept to the entire band.  We kept it short, 15 minute sets at peoples houses mainly because we thought we could get out before the cops got there. LOL We do between 4 and 6 mini shows when we plan a Jam in the Ram, they are super fun.

Was a truck always the first option? 

DC – Yes, the truck actually works really well and we fit everything we need (including a generator for power) in the bed and we have become pretty good at unloading and packing it up in decent amount of time to move to the next location.

What would you say have been some of the logistic problems with this particular gig?

BK – Overall the Jam in the Ram gigs have gone fairly smoothly, but one issue that we’ve run into is keeping to a schedule. For these gigs, we list 4-6 locations with an address and time, each with a short set length of 15-20 minutes. The problem is that we end up doing an encore at each location and interact with all the people who come out and watch as we would at a normal show, so we get a little behind schedule sometimes. 

DC – Yeah and the very first time we forgot the mixing board and my mom had to drive home to get it.  We did the first show with Bryce having very little vocals which was tough but we pushed through, the next 4 that day were fine.  Now we have a checklist for the gear, bruh

I understand you will be using this platform to premiere some new material – how’s that coming along?

BK – I think I can speak for all of us when I say that we’re really proud of our new material. We’ve heavily focused on writing during the pandemic and some really great songs have come out of it. 

 How has the current situation influenced your approach to writing?

Julian B – The pandemic has influenced our writing by allowing more time to focus on music. Before Covid-19, our practice routine was to mainly work out songs we already had in the set and write if we had the time. It was definitely a struggle to get everything we wanted done within a 2 to 3 hour time frame. During Covid-19, the need to practice social distancing has  benefited us as musicians by giving us the time to practice and write. With all of our schedules cleared, we have as much time that we need to practice music on our own, or practice as a band 6 feet apart.

When and where can people catch the streaming? 

LE – You can catch us streaming on Facebook and Instagram @xwireband on Friday, August 14 at 4pm

What else is happening next in X Wire’s world?

LE – We will be recording a few new songs really soon, can’t wait for that. If this fundraiser goes well, we will continue to help #saveourstages so we have clubs to play at when this is all over.

JB – Yeah, we are releasing a song we recorded prior to the pandemic shut down called In My Head and obviously more Jam In the Ram’s. We just love to play live in front of an audience.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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