5 Things With The Tropics
by Walter Price
The Tropics: Claire George, Eric Silverman, Nate Skelton, Kern Sigala, Rowan Peter
I have no idea if San Francisco’s pop n ‘roll aces set out to record a song that delights in an imagined revamped Blood, Sweat & Tears fronted by Kiki Dee as Linda Ronstadt but their recent single “Take You Home” gets damn close.
Every part of this track works to the extent it solidifies into a delicious pop dream. The bass line mingling with the horn flavors excite only to be perfectly complimented by the distinctive airy wandering soul vocals of Claire George.
Have a listen, you’ll understand. SHAZAM…The other side of the track’s coin is the near timeless video (see it below). Shot around their home turf of San Fran and directed by the keen eyed Frank Door, who marverlously matches the song’s textures. (check out his work on The Tropics last vid for “Fireproof”).
I asked the band a set of 5 Things questions and here are the subsequent 30 things you should know about The Tropics.
The 5 things people should know about San Fran music scene?
1. There are a TON of exceptionally talented individuals and bands in SF. It’s remarkable.
2. The bands in San Francisco are incredibly hardworking.
3. Musicians here are super friendly – the type of people that you’d want to hang out with!
4. There are loads of music venues in San Francisco, AND so many amazing ones. There is live music everywhere.
5. Pretty much every style of music is going on here.
What are 5 things the video format means to the band?
1. Video makes room for artistry beyond songwriting and music production.
2. We’ve appreciated using video as an artistic medium and not just as a way to get our music out into the world. We’ve tried to treat all of our videos as whole concepts of their own.
3. Time the band gets to spend together that isn’t only about music!
4. We get to work with some badass directors and film crews, Frank Door being the most recent who directed our videos for both Fireproof and Take You Home.
5. We get to hang out with a lot of our friends who have helped tremendously in the videos we’ve put out.
5 things about working with Pat Brown/Different Fur?
1. Pat is a real dude and he cares about the people he works with and the music he makes with them.
2. Pat was awesome at helping us refine and polish up the sound we had in mind.
3. Different Fur is really a dream to be in. The place is steeped in history and you can feel it just hanging out in there.
4. They get all sorts of free drinks so if you record there you may end up drinking a TON of odd-flavored soda. They also have an extensive and hilarious coffee mug collection.
5. The entire crew that runs that place are really good people to be around.
5 facts no one knows about Wind House?
1. The photo on the front cover was a last minute addition before printing.
2. Rowan played one of Eric’s guitars on the entire album.
3. We actually recorded about 10 songs, and then picked the best to put on the album.
4. Most of these songs were arranged in the studio, with reworked verses or entire sections removed.
5. We left the recording sessions feeling really united and together as a band – it was a special bonding experience for us
The 5 things about The Tropics no one knows but should?
1. We sing “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” a cappella before every show. In perfect harmony, of course.
2. Kern is a total renaissance man who can tap dance, cook, sing, and loves pepper jack cheese.
3. We practice in Eric’s basement next to a cardboard cutout of Lando Calrissian.
4. We don’t really jam out in any of our songs, but most of our songs start as long jams in practice that we pick pieces out of.
5. Sometimes Claire sings lyrics about soda pop when we are trying to find a melody for a part.
5 SF bands they should know
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