Vernon band Amistad features the talents of local secondary students Aidan Andrews

Vernon band Amistad features the talents of local secondary students Aidan Andrews

Getting to know: Amistad

The Morning Star continues with Getting to Know, Q&As with local musicians. This one is with Vernon-based band Amistad.


Special to The Morning Star

Amistad is a well known Vernon band composed of W.L. Seaton secondary students Aidan Andrews (lead vocals, guitar, keys and ukulele), Nolan Bassett (bass, trumpet, vocals), Carson Bassett (drums, percussion), Craig Matterson (piano, organ, synth, vocals) and Kalamalka secondary student Eli Garlick (guitar, vocals, violin). The band has just released its brand, new album titled Lee.

Q: How did Amistad form?

Aidan: “Amistad started from Carson, Nolan and I playing together in Grade 5. It just somehow worked out that Carson played drums, Nolan played bass, and I played guitar.”

Q: I know that you guys just had a CD release concert for the new album Lee. How was that experience?

Aidan: “It was insane. We’re really proud of it because that was the most people we’ve managed to fit into that venue (Powerhouse Theatre) so far. It was absolutely fantastic.”

Eli: “One of the best things I have ever done. It was so amazing to see all of the people that have heard our music and came out to support us.”

Nolan: “It was so great to see all of those people supporting the local music scene.”

Q: What would your dream venue to perform at be?

Craig: O2 Arena (Greenwich, England)

Eli: Red Rocks Amphitheatre (Morrison, Colorado)

Aidan: Orpheum Theatre (Vancouver) or the 9:30 Club (Washington, D.C.)

Nolan: Red Rocks

Carson: Orpheum

Q: How did you guys come up with the band name?

Aidan: “La Amistad was a 19th century Spanish slave ship on which the slaves mutinied and took control of the ship. It stood out to me mainly because of the mutiny but also because Amistad translates to friendship. I just saw it as very ironic for a slave ship to have such a name, so it stuck with me.”

Q: If you could go back in time and tell a younger version of yourself one thing, what would it be?

Aidan: “Guitar isn’t the only instrument you can learn.”

Eli: “Don’t get a haircut.”

Nolan: “Be more open to other bands than Rush.”

Q: What are your biggest fears?

Aidan: “The possibility of this not working out. I absolutely love what we’re doing right now and it’s all I want to do. I guess it’s less of a fear and more a reminder for me to keep improving and staying unique. Also, if sharks had legs and could run ridiculously fast, that’s terrifying to me.”

Eli: “Being mauled by a bear while on stage or forgetting to wear pants.”

Craig: “Beaten up by a gang, or seeing a fish grow legs.”

Q: What is your favourite song on the new album?

Aidan: “Currently, Year and My Eyes and I, but it changes often.

Craig: “My Eyes and I.

Nolan: “Lee.

Eli:My Eyes and I.

Q: What’s one downside of the modern day world?

Aidan: “Not enough attention given to crisis areas.”

Craig: “Global warming.”

Nolan: “People watching concerts through their cellphones instead of being in the moment.”

Eli: “Not enough people play music.”

Q: What song is on repeat on your iPods currently?

Aidan: M.O.N.E.Y. by The 1975.

Craig: Creature Fear by Bon Iver.

Nolan: What is Hip? by Tower of Power.

Eli: Out of Mind by Magic Man.

Q: Do you guys have any upcoming shows?

Aidan: “We are currently in the booking process, but I can say there are definitely some local shows on their way. We’re starting to write new material as well and are more excited than ever.”

Getting to Know, featuring Q&As with local musicians, is conducted by Kalamalka secondary school grad Aniko Forgo.