In the weeks leading up to the Houston Press Music Awards showcase on Sunday, August 4, Rocks Off will be profiling a handful of performers each day, mostly in their own words -- part of the best top-to-bottum lineup the showcase has ever had, in our humble opinion. See the showcase schedule and ticket information at HPMusicAwards.com, and watch Twitter (@hprocksoff) every day until the showcase for your chance to win tickets.
To which member are we speaking? What are you nominated for? I am Dobber Beverly and Oceans of Slumber is nominated for a few things collectively and individually as members. I believe we are up for Best Metal Band, Best New Act, and Best Local Recording.
Our bassist, Keegan Kelly, is nominated for the most rocking bass player, and I somehow slipped into the noisemaking drum nomination.
Please list all of your regular band members and what instruments they play. Ronnie Gates, vocals; Sean Gary, guitar; Anthony Contreras, guitar; Keegan Kelly, bass; Dobber Beverly, drums.
Describe your band in four to seven words. Beautiful and dynamic progressive music.
Who is your single biggest musical influence and why? That's quite limiting. Probably Sergei Rachmaninoff. As a whole, his style of writing and the countless works that he's written speak to me a bit more than any other single composer or musical group.
His solo works have a transcendental beauty that defies time and certainly rises a bit higher than the majority of modern music for me, and his orchestral works have a maturity that not many can claim ever to have reached in his or her lifetime. To me classical music and jazz are the influences of everything we do musically. Directly or indirectly, and they are certainly a big influence on my playing.
What recordings (if any) do you have readily available? Oceans of Slumber has a self-drelease record, Aetherial, available through any and every digital retailer and also available in digipack format directly through the band.
We don't have distribution yet, as we are waiting to finalize a record label to handle all of that for us. So in the meantime we write, record, and play out as much as possible.
Have you ever been HPMA-nominated before? When and what for? We haven't been. We are a relatively new band and hope to stay up with the rest of the insane talent our city has to offer.
Where and how often do you perform (publicly) around Houston? Usually we play about four times a month throughout the city. That usually includes the outskirts of Houston too, from Clear Lake to The Woodlands and anywhere in between.
What is the next step for your band? The next step is to get signed and get on the road! We've already got the majority of a second record written and we are raring to go!!
Finish this sentence: "Houston music is..." Alive, striving and able to compete internationally with any music scene. We are one of the largest cities on the planet and we have a smorgasbord of musical talent that encompasses all music styles and taste.
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Oceans of Slumber's HPMA showcase spot is 4 p.m. Sunday, August 4, at Pete's Dueling Piano Bar, 1201 Fannin. See more about the band at facebook.com/oceansofslumber or reverbnation.com/oceansofslumber.