LOONER, a Los-Angeles based rock band, is the husband-and-wife songwriting team of Angel Roché, Jr., and Zoë Poledouris Roché.
The couple has spent the last twelve years seamlessly melding their disparate backgrounds of salsa, orchestral composition, jazz, pop, industrial, and reggae into a signature sound distinguishable by Zoë’s haunting vocals and Angel’s locomotive beats. Their songs are a curious mixture of the dark and the light—piercing lyrics entwine with poppy melodies, and catchy hooks are underscored by fuzzy prog rock riffs. Under the spell of their undeniable style that they call Steady Rock, even covers find themselves LOONERfied in an instant.
Most Beautiful Thing
I grew up with an older sister and I also had many girls that I considered close friends. After years of observation, I noticed a trend. And a sad one at that. I've found that the majority of girls feel like they have to doctor their appearance in order to feel beautiful and they feel like they have to work for their worth.
Personally, I think beauty has nothing to do with the outward appear, but everything to do with the person underneath the skin. But as a society lead by pop culture, we have masked the truth behind true beauty. Now we find "beauty" in the face of a magazine cover, movie screen, computer, etc. So the message I wanted to relay behind my song "Most Beautiful Thing" is that there can't possibly be a more perfect and beautiful you. You don't have to work for your value and worth, because you are priceless just the way you are.
Ever feel lost in a cycle in a relationship where you should have a lot of catching up to do but yet the communication just isn't there or it has long ago faded? Ever feel like you're just treading water in a relationship and that all of a sudden the years have gone by and you have no idea who the person is you're with anymore? Well that's the story behind "Catching Up," the new single written by Tyler Mechem and recorded by Crowfield (Charleston, SC). Mechem has an uncanny knack for summing up the feelings and emotions that these uncertain times in a relationship can bring about. Mechem prefers for the listener to reach their own conclusions about what the song might mean.
Crowfield blends Infectious, charismatic rock with elements of Americana, alt-country, and pop and has been captivating audiences across the U.S. with an engaging stage presence and insightful and poignant lyrics. Frontman Tyler Mechem formed the band that would come to be known as Crowfield when he relocated to Charleston, SC in 2005 from Indiana. In 2008, they caught the ear of acclaimed producer Rick Beato (Shinedown, Needtobreathe, Crossfade, Trey Anastasio, Stuck Mojo, Charlie Mars). Crowfield's debut album "Goodbye, Goodnight, So Long Midwestern" (Ten Star Records) soon followed and won the band a legion of fans with it’s stripped down focus on rock and alt-country.
Crowfield’s third album The Diamond Sessions features a return closer to the band’s original sound. The album, also produced by Beato, features everything from ethereal acoustic solo numbers like “Measure of a Life” to soaring radio ready tracks full of horns and strings like “Catching Up” to the rock of “Mistake” and “Black Hills.” Formerly signed to Universal Records, Crowfield is full of broad commercial appeal and is currently on tour across the United States.
I'm Gonna Love You Anyway
Wrote this song on my grandparent's piano, which was passed down to me. My grandfather gave it to my grandmother for their wedding anniversary decades ago. It was the night after the events in the song took place. I was on fire. The song came out so simply. I never changed a line from that first time I wrote it down. I started singing and the first lines came out: "I started out younger." That's when I knew what I was supposed to do, when I knew what the song needed from me. It needed everything. I decided that I was going to make this song reflect one thing: honesty. And in so doing, make it an offering to the one I loved, the night bearing witness. I would chose love. It's the last song on the album "I We Us Are Was Were Is", but it represents the beginning of something.
Flash ahead seven months from the time this song was written. We are married. There's a sense that it was always going to be like this. We were always together, even when we were apart. Some songs are written long before you ever sang the melody for the first time or put the words to paper.
At first listen, A Mayfield Affair's upbeat, banjo driven, almost country-ish song "Kansas" might conjure up sweet thoughts of the Wizard of Oz, with its many references to the Oz story, but the truth has a slightly sharper edge than you may think.
I wrote it as a reply to an argument in a recent romantic entanglement. I rarely talk about it, but once, in another universe, I was engaged to a woman who I thought was the one for me. She became close to my family (who all live in Kansas) and when things went south, the engagement ended. Yet she would still talk of wanting to go out to Kansas to visit them. It was her dream to sit on our front porch, drink sweet tea, and relax in my family's company. I sat down to write out my thoughts about this and a song was created. I was trying to make a point without turning the song into an "I Hate You" moment, and I wanted to explain that my family was a perk of being with me and that she couldn't get her dream of Kansas family moments without me, so if she still wanted that, then she needed to come to her senses, and come back to me.
Funnily enough, when she first heard the song, all she focused on was that it appeared that I was calling her a witch with the "You'll never get there riding brooms" line. With the writing of this song, it paved the way for me to write more metaphorically, in order to try and spare some feelings, as my writing style up to that point was always very literal. Those involved in situations I would choose to write about would have no trouble figuring out what I was talking about. Learning this has saved me a lot of trouble, and made the music I've been a part of creating much better.
The lyrics to our song "Monsters" is about our obsession, or really any artist's obsession with creating music and trying to become successful in the music business.
How much we all give, how much we all compromise, how much effort we exude to progress even an inch. The tough road of progress can feel like a visitation from a "monster" in a nightmare and at other times feel like the most wonderful dream. The "monsters" are not only in our dreams, they also are our dreams.
The "monsters" also symbolize the music and songs we create. Making music is one of the most exhilarating and wonderful experiences in our lives, however, questions like "Will the song be liked?", "Will anyone identify with this?", or "What life will this song lead?" have a tendency to arise. The song is also about how these fears, imaginary though they may be, can paralyze if we're not careful.
This song has been, and continues to be therapeutic when we play it live. It helps us re-focus on the reasons we make music and helps us overcome our fears in what we create and how to move forward.
“My Sunny Day” is one of my favorite tracks on the album, in part because of the way it makes me feel—relaxed and ready for some lovin’! But it also holds a special place in my heart because it was inspired by something my Nana said before she passed away. She had been suffering from multiple cancers for many years. After a decade of doctors telling her she had only months left to live, her pain became unbearable, and the pain medication had a ton of negative side effects including nausea and sleeping problems.
She finally decided to try a more, shall I say, natural method of relief. One night in her living room, after a natural relief session, she told me that what she loved most about it was how “the world moves slower.” I immediately knew I would turn it into a song. We talked about a lot of things that night—one of our last together—and when she fell asleep, I holed up in my room and penned “My Sunny Day”. Nana’s gone, but her memory lives on in me and in the song she inspired.
If you're at a party talking about the formation of Australia's dual-gender grunge pop four-piece Love Hate Rebellion, chances are you'll be telling the story of their chance meeting in a Brisbane gay bar; or you'll be hearing it from someone else. You might mention the "Suspenderboys AAA Side", (their first release), or even drop the names of producer Jeff Lovejoy, film maker Rob Johnson (Orange Light Media) and model/actress Sarah Livingstone (she starred in the music video).
The story you won't tell will be the one about Sex Flower; and that'll be ironic because it's not just the second track on the "Suspenderboys" disc, but also the original name of the band. The story of Sex Flower gives a fuller perspective not only on the song, but on the band's formation.
The Story Behind 'Never Enough'
I wrote Never Enough after candid conversation with a friend about our past vices. I had spent 10 years as an alcoholic plagued by denial, and he had spent a number of years loaded with coke. Today we both are living strong in sobriety, but you can never forget what it's like to love something that destroys you.
We swapped various red flag moments including my two near death experiences, and his $100,000+ debt owed to a 'to rename nameless' drug dealer. "When I came down from cocaine, I would lay in bed trying to sleep. I hated this drug. I would tell myself I would never do it again, but his phone number would race through my mind, over and over. Non-stop. Until I called him." And "Never Enough" was conceived.
The Devil Lives on Lyman
It was late, I couldn't sleep, and I was in a really dark place. I decided I was going to manifest all the things that pissed me off about my breakup and lack of closure into one song…One song that could really hit home...One song that could pull me out of the purgatory state I was stuck in.
I wrote out lyrics through the night compounding everything I could to stick it to her. I called it, "The Devil Lives on Lyman". Lyman was a street I lived on with my girlfriend, and living there I had never felt more disrespected by a person in my life.
Our Tuesdays Feel Like Fridays
Our single "Tuesdays" was written mostly about the Open Jam we host every other Tuesday at the Legendary Dobbs in South Philadelphia. For us, the open jam session is the funnest part of our week, and it doesn't matter if it's only Tuesday....we still party like its a Friday.
The secondary inspiration for the song draws from past experiences. The line about being in a movie was taken from actually being in a movie. The song from our first album "High Up" was featured in the movie "Living Will" starring Ryan Dunn from Jackass. We actually had some facetime too.
So the song basically says everyday is a good day to party because we all only live one life....so why not let it be one big party.
"The Universal Dance" is a song that was lyrically inspired by the song "Strange Overtones" by David Byrne & Brian Eno. In "Strange Overtones", the narrator sings about a person he hears writing music in the next door apartment and how that person is trying to put together a song. The narrator basically knows that eventually the song will come together and all the pieces will fall into place.
I thought, what a neat storyline. "The Universal Dance" plays along the same lines. There is a person living in an apartment and the female neighbor above is a dancer who is trying to figure out a dance routine. Our narrator is a retired dance instructor who has not danced in years but knows that he can help the struggling neighbor with this very difficult dance number. Throughout the song he works with her and helps her develop the routine until it's ready to be performed on stage and this is very gratifying for him.
The title of the song comes from a friend of mine, Ross Podgornik, who coined the term. I have this ridiculous, flamboyant dance move that I'm known to bust out from time to time and when we were in college Ross started calling it The Universal Dance. Eventually I realized it was the perfect title for this song.
Comment below. Do you think this song should be on our next sampler?
The stories behind some of the songs from our recent album Deep End Of Down:
Disillusion - The opening track was written about the moment of realization that the end of a relationship may be inevitable no matter how much you wish you could fix it. Maybe it is giving up or maybe it is finally seeing the truth. Either way, it becomes a fight just to keep the sour taste out of your life.
The song Gold Dust came about when I was going through a lot of life transitions. It's about the delicate line of waiting and pressing through for something to become what you want it to be, or realizing that it's not meant to be and that you should let it go. It has a two way meaning for me of a relationship that was crumbling apart, as well as a reality check of my aspirations. The song is about the fragility and beauty of wanting something to work out, but the looming possibility that it won't happen. Thus the chorus lyric "Were we building just to watch it fall?" The last line of the song is "There used to be Gold Dust coming out of your mouth..."
Here we go again, thinking this ride will never end
waiting on forever takes a long time
i would rather say goodbye
Yellow paint is slowly peeling off the walls
soon this old house will crumble and fall
three stories high with nothing to show
all the potential of an ashes glow
When it's all said and done
did we really say anything at all
were we building just to watch it fall?
Left that chair in the corner of my mind
there sits all of my hopes and dreams combined
and I tell them one day soon they can leave
until then the dust keeps gathering
There used to be gold dust coming out of your mouth...
Have you had a moment like this? Share your comments...
My song "Reach For The High" is autobiographical. When I was in high school,last year, people were criticizing everything I did, as many were jealous ofmy music career. I know this because before I came out with a CD and music video people did not make fun of me much. When I was 16, I released my first CD, 'Rhythms of Life." There was a large launch party, attended by over 2,000 people at a major club in South Florida. The event was covered by the press, both in print and on TV.
As a result, after I started generating a lot of attention, the whole school knew who I was and many of the students did not support my career. They would make fun of my songs and make fun of me as a performer. I would go home many days and feel really bad about myself. Oddly enough,i found out that the very people that were criticizing me and making me feel bad were following me on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, and secretly knew where I had been performing. But, they would never compliment me or publicly support me. So, as a comeback to all of the offensive remarks, I decided to write a song to all of the people who tried to bring me down.
I realized when I was writing the song that this theme is bigger than I am; it is universal. I know so many people have experienced something just like I did and could relate. I wanted to write a song that would empower everyone to never give up and believe in themselves. So I wrote, "Reach For The High." I structured the lyrics in a way where the verses explain what people said to me in an attempt to pull me down. For example, the song begins with "Give up before you fail. Stop trying, and dream on, they say!" and in the second verse I wrote the things that my "friends" would do such as "They kiss you, hug you when they see you and they tell you 'You're great!'. Then they turn around and whisper to their friends. They're so fake." People would pretend to be nice to me when they were with me, but I would later find out that they would talk about me behind my back and make fun of me. I then structured the hook to be inspirational to people who have ever felt bullied, criticized, or judged and wrote, "Reach for the high. The power's inside. There's nothing you can't do if you believe."
I wrote these words because after my experiences, I realized that it really does not matter what other people say as long as you believe in yourself, work hard to reach your goals, and keep your head up high. I debuted "Reach For The High" at the Annual "Inspire Greatness" Gala for the Special Olympics in Miami and felt it was a great song to instill in the young athletes that they can overcome their obstacles if they believe in themselves and to not let others bring them down. I can't wait for the day when I prove to all of the people who didn't believe in me that I can achieve my dreams and I hope "Reach For The High" empowers all of the Special Olympics athletes I sang for, and many other people to feel the same way.
This song was inspired by watching a documentary about Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement. Although I remember the times when this was happening, watching the documentary made me relive all this. It reminded me of the conflicts and the ignorance, but also of the hatred that some people felt towards the people fighting for their rights. At first, watching dogs attacking people, reading about church bombings, and watching guys beat up old men and women I felt great anger and had some nasty thoughts myself. Then I heard Dr. King speak about the dream he had for our future, for the future of his children and all children, a future where people would be working together.
Somehow this started me thinking about family and how all these people that were full of hate and prejudice, all these people that were acting so cruelly also had their own children, wives, mothers, family. From then I started thinking about what I thought Dr. King envisioned, the fact that ultimately we’re in this together: like it or not, we were going to have to learn to respect each other so we could have a just society. And if we are all humans, then we are all “Just One”. As I started thinking about the song, I extended the idea to include anyone whose suffering or misfortune might be ignored. That’s how the song was born.
Our song Save Our Love, from our debut album "Take Flight", is the motto of our band. From the title someone instantly assumes this is about a relationship or a love song. True but not true. This is a metaphor for what this band loves more than anything else, our band and music.
This song tells the story of the struggles a band faces and that nothing will hold us back from pursuing our dreams; together. The opening line states "Time, was never on our side when it came to this life but in time we came to realize all the signs that have been right in front of us this whole time" - this is about the length of time and commitment it takes to make a name for your band and former band members that had addiction problems that almost caused this band to fail.
I wrote "Road Rising" about the feeling of restlessness I had for most of high school, which I attended in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. I used to make trips down to Charleston pretty often by myself to visit friends, and driving alone was (and to some degree still is) the only thing that made me feel like I was going anywhere. I learned how to sing the way I do now on those trips too; I sang along at an ear-blistering volume with Jeff Buckley, Soundgarden, Nirvana, No Doubt, whoever was on the CD player at the time. Before that, I had only sung in church choirs or chorus in high school, both of which aren't the greatest places to develop a rock style of singing.
I was raised in a conservative Christian home and never rebelled much against my parents until after high school, so I generally experienced a lot of pent-up anger and anxiety regarding the rules I had to follow but didn't understand or agree with. I knew I wanted more out of my life than what I saw around me in the suburban South; I wanted to somehow transcend mediocrity and do something great but wasn't sure how to get there. Driving the 1.5 hours from Myrtle to Charleston always gave me a sense of going somewhere and doing something and, for some reason, assured me that I would one day break out of the backwardness and stagnancy of where I grew up to find my own way.
Although I did one day figure out what it was I wanted from life, I went through many years of doing what I thought I "should" do rather than what I wanted to do. I put so many of my dreams on hold for other people and for some sort of ideal that never really delivered. I hit a breaking point in 2009 and decided to pursue what has always made me happiest in my life: music. "Road Rising" was written then and encapsulates the feeling I had both in high school and later on of wanting more out of life and pouring all of myself into my vision so I could finally get where I wanted to be.
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