WILLIAMSPORT - Rock-power pop-indie group KineticBlu is making its way back to this area this fall, after entertaining listeners at the Bullfrog Brewery in the past.
KineticBlu is comprised of Jordan White, vocals and guitar; Brian Kibler, lead guitar; Tara Crowe, vocals; and Rob Lilly, drums. White recently chatted about the Lehigh-Valley-based band.
Q.: How would you describe your sound, if you could only pick three words?
A: "That's a tough one, but I'd say 'engaging, heartfelt and honest.'"
Q.: What's the weirdest experience you've ever had while touring?
A.: "We had a wedding proposal while we were about to play our second set, in front of the entire audience. This guy came up and grabbed a microphone and said he wanted to announce the winner of a raffle they were doing; we had no clue what he was talking about because we weren't running any kind of raffle! He said his girlfriend won, called her name and she came up and he proposed to her right there.
"Brian, our lead guitar player, didn't really notice what was going on and he was tuning his guitar during the entire thing through his amp.
"It was funny but kind of sweet."
Q.: Who writes the songs?
A.: "It's a collective effort. Many of our songs are ideas or melodies that I have and I bring them to the band in a raw, acoustic form. My thing is lyrics; I work really hard on them and they're very important to me. Our fans are very intelligent and sensitive people, and they can spot a fake. So I spend weeks and weeks changing and tinkering with the lyrics to one single song. Sometimes I'll even change the lyrics in the middle of performing the song."
Q.: Is there a message you want your music to convey?
A.: "In terms of this band, we view music as an amazing outlet and have discovered that it's all about how you choose to deal with what you're handed. We want to share the talent we were given, and give it back in a way that makes everyone believe in something - anything - better.
"You see, music saved me when I was a kid. When I was 14 years old, I really didn't think I had much to live for. Now, let me preface this by saying we had a beautiful house and food and clothing and everything, so I know there are millions who had it worse and I feel bad saying this, but I was terribly unhappy and no one seemed to care. Despite this, all I had to do was listen to my favorite band at the time and I was all right for awhile. Music saved me from being another statistic.
"I had always been musically inclined as a child and I decided that I would work the rest of my life to repay the debt I owe to it as a craft and as an art; to help someone else who may be in my situation."
Q.: Which one of the band's songs is your favorite to perform and why?
A.: "We'd probably all have a different answer, but for me it's probably a song I wrote called "The Days I Didn't Speak" because of the message hidden within it. You see, I wrote the song about a bar I used to go to by myself after I would have a bad day. I would kind of sit there alone and have my pint and think things over, and I never really said a word - to anyone. And I enjoy playing that song for others because if I'm performing, my day is already going better than those days I sat at that bar, by default, and it makes me appreciate where we're at."
Q.: Are there any good stories behind the band's name?
A.: "Brian and Rob actually had the name KineticBlue several years ago but that version of the band parted ways so they shelved it. Two years ago, when we first got together, we wanted to pick something new so we went through a lot of names. It took weeks. No one could decide on anything. Then, I was taking a physics course for my bachelor degree down at East Stroudsburg University and we were studying theories and models of energy and it made me think about it again.
"The word 'kinetic' is actually rooted in Greek and means motion. Kinetic energy also can be passed from one object to another. So we ended up bringing the name KineticBlue back. It's sort of how we think about the power of music, as a gift that can be passed or given to anyone."
Q.: And "Blu"?
A.: "The word 'blu' comes from a 1999 album from the San Francisco band Third Eye Blind, which our drummer Rob really likes and I like as well. So the name is a hybrid of sorts, kind of like us. On paper, the four of us together in a band probably doesn't make sense, but I think when you hear us, it makes all the sense in the world."
Q.: Will you be playing in the Williamsport area anytime soon?
A.: "We're looking at the Cell Block and the Bullfrog Brewery in the fall."
Q.: Have you played here before?
A.: "Yes, and my favorite venue is actually the Bullfrog Brewery; they have a great food and beer selection. My brother Austin lives here and I stay with him when we play in the area. I've been coming to Williamsport fairly consistently for a few years now. So, thanks for having us!"