Something More: Local Group Dreams of Taking Music to the World
Strobel, the talented band hailing from Southern Pines, isn’t afraid to reach for something more than local success.
When asked in a recent interview where the ultimate venue would be to perform, they all agreed: London’s Royal Albert Hall.
“It’s the best theater,” says bassist Baxter Clement.
Members dream of playing Albert Hall, following in the footsteps of legendary bands such as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, and one of their main influences, The Killers.
Strobel includes Sam Strobel on piano and vocals, Nick Allen on guitar, Will Youngclaus on the drums, and bassist Baxter Clement, who owns and operates Sandhills School of Performing Arts, a music school in the heart of Southern Pines.
The band’s first album, titled “Something More,” has songs that have been played live on the radio in every state in the U.S., as well as a handful of countries throughout the world, according to a report by the band’s performing rights collection agency.
The band came together when Strobel, a piano teacher at the music school, showed Clement songs he had written over the past two years.
Clement was interested in Strobel’s work, so he introduced him to Allen and Youngclaus, childhood buddies who were seeking a change from performing 1960s and ’70s cover songs. The quartet started performing and recording Strobel’s songs, which turned into their first album, “Something More.”
The members of Strobel describe the sound on their first album as “alternative soft rock with a little bit of pop.” Their main musical influence comes from the bands they’ve covered and those they listen to, mainly post punk rock era bands like Coldplay and The Killers.
In July, the band performed at the village of Pinehurst’s “Live After Five,” to benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Sandhills. They were surprised by the reaction they got.
“It was really hot, so there wasn’t a lot of enthusiasm at first, but as the night went on and it started cooling off, it was a lot of fun,” says Strobel. “People got into it.”
Allen adds: “I thought they’d like want something like ZZ Top, or something old and classic.”
All agreed they enjoyed watching people dance to their music.
In the beginning, Strobel contributed the majority of songs to the writing process.
“I like to write when I’m emotionally driven, and it usually produces something that sounds good,” he says.
Recently, songwriting has become more of a collective process.
“Andromeda” and “Sights and Sounds” are new songs written collaboratively.
“Usually, Sam comes in with some basic idea of a song, with a piano to it, and then we all just kind of add our parts to it,” Allen says.
“(This process) takes a lot of polishing, but we have fun,” Strobel says.
“You can do things today that you couldn’t have done 10 or 15 years ago,” Clement says, referring to the current state of the music industry.
One example of this is that many bands now possess their own recording studios where they can produce their own material instead of paying a recording company to do it for them. He also mentioned the value of the Internet and its promotional components, such as YouTube and iTunes.
The band hopes to release a five- or six-song EP before year’s end, but may produce a new full-length album if songwriting goes smoothly over the next several months.
“This fall we’ll be playing a lot,” Clement says, “unfortunately, outside of the Southern Pines area.”
Look for upcoming show details on the band’s website, www.wearestrobel.com.
Contact O’Brien Taylor at email@example.com.
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