Michael Buckner | Frazer Harrison, Getty Images Now this is a collaboration that…
- Posted on Mar 12th 2010 6:59PM by Nana-Adwoa Ofori
How would you describe your sound?
We would lean towards describing our sound as Americana. We write all of our own music. We don't play any traditional numbers or anything like that. It's a tough thing to describe. We do a lot of instrumental picking but we are able to find space and silence in our music at times. We're not like one of these bands that just hit you upside the head with banjo and fiddle the whole entire time.
How did your band form?
The fiddle and the mandolin player and I met in high school. We kind of all realized that we loved music at the time but none of us had listened to acoustic music. Then I went to a party one night that Dave and Greg were playing at. They were in a country band called Stillhouse and Greg played pedal steel and Dave was writing songs and playing guitar. I completely fell in love with what they were doing. It was original but yet hearkened back to a '50s and '60s country sound. Then we started hanging out and took a lot of Dave's songs and put the banjo and fiddle to it and kind of realized it worked. Then we started playing out for fun and then we randomly got a record deal.
What are your musical influences?
We mention this group every time we are asked this question. We all fell in love with The Band. There is a guy named John Hartford who was a bluegrass musicians and genius songwriter and performer that we all fell in love with, too. He wrote 'Gentle on My Mind' which has been recorded by like 300 different artists. We were raised as rock 'n' roll kids so we were into Motown, bluegrass, Stones, Beatles. R.E.M is also a band we all admire and love as well.
How did you come up with your band name?
When we met, I moved from Raleigh, N.C. to Chapel Hill, where UNC is. I lived in this shack in the woods on this farm with a buddy of mine. The rest of the band would drive from Raleigh to Chapel Hill. The house was in Orange County outside of Chapel Hill, but literally a quarter-mile past my driveway was the line for Orange and Chatham County. Since I was so far out in the country, you couldn't really see where my place was on the side on the road especially at night. Every time the guys came they would cross over the Chatham County Line and then they knew that had gone too far. That first time they came they walked in they said, "Hey, how about Chatham County Line? We just drove past it and thought it would be a good name." I thought it had kind of a ring to it and just kind of stuck.
What's your biggest vice?
John and his hairstyles. Most bluegrass bands survive on not changing anything but John has a new hairstyle about once a week now. The styles are dramatic and require lots of hair gel and manipulation by brushes and fingers. It's amazing, when we go overseas we have to send people out to search for these products. Luckily, they find them!
What's in your festival survival kit?
When we perform live we always hang the North Carolina flag behind us. It always shocks me how many people recognize the flag and love North Carolina.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
When I was only 6 or 7 years old, I had a crush on Mallory from 'Family Ties', Justine Bateman. I was really a fan of hers back in the day. I'm sure I will be the only one who will give that answer for this question.
What's your musical guilty pleasure?
I really like the Bee Gees. I actually think they are genius song-writers. The songs are brilliant. I dig the Bee-gees you can print that.
Beatles or Stones?
I maybe separate from the other guys I'm not sure but I'm a Beatles guy. I love the Stones but it's the Beatles. I'll add a caveat to that statement, though. The Beatles never played live past 1964 or 65; the Stones have been playing forever. I've seen the Stones play live before and it was amazing.
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
One of the craziest and coolest things that happened was at SXSW the last time we were there. We played at the Continental Club and Peter Buck and Mike Mills from R.E.M came to the show and they were right up front and digging the hell out it. They bought a bunch of CD's after we played and one of them asked us for out autograph. We were trippin' out about that. I was really glad to see that famous guys like that go out to shows and listen to small bands.
Nana-Adwoa Ofori is a contributor from Seed.com. Learn how you can contribute here.