STNNNG talks about starting STNNNG

In this week's print edition infamous legends STNNNG talk about the long process of recording their new album


Smoke of My Will

, in a sort of oral history hodge-podge conducted over the course of several interviews. There was much left out of that piece, so Gimme Noise thought it would be a good idea to share some more.

And so, in their own words, STNNNG on starting STNNNG.

Cast: Chris Besinger (vocals), Adam Burt (lead guitar), Nate Nelson (lead guitar), Jesse Kwakenat (bass), Ben Ivascu (drums).

C: It takes a while to understand a band's character. I think the speed at which everything moves now is hugely detrimental, especially to rock music.

A: Where were our heads at when we started STNNNG? I'm trying to remember. I think we wanted to do something just kind of sassier and maybe less quiet-loud dynamic and more about rocking. I think Jeremy and Nate were the two guys who got the ball rolling. Then they asked me to join, and asked Chris after that, who was the one guy I didn't know. Then Jesse joined right after the first record.

N: I moved here from Omaha, and I knew Adam from The Vets. I went to Eclipse on the wrong night and ended up seeing The Vets play and they blew my mind. In Omaha no bands were that good.

So me and [previous drummer] Jeremy wrote a couple songs and gave Adam a CD-R of a couple of songs and asked him if he'd play one show with us. And he did and he liked it. I met Chris like two weeks before the first show, he was in a Jesus Lizard cover band that was really, really awesome and I said 'that little dude can definitely be in the band.'

C: It's really hard to talk your way into being in a band when you can't do anything, but I talked my way into this band. People who play instruments are the ones who start bands, so if you want to be a frontman you're at a disadvantage.

B: The first time I met Chris I played new band night at First Ave with him, it was like 1993 I think? I didn't get to know him for a couple years later. I recognized him; 'you were in Red Letter Day.'

N: The bar is set really high in this town. You gotta be really good even to have your friends like you. You can play your first show and if you suck no one's coming any more.

J: I might have been the only dude to see their first ten shows, in 2003. I had played with Chris in two bands before that. We were all a little bit older when we got to STNNNG, and all of us had been in bands that had toured or whatever. Between all of us we've toured the West coast, the East coast, South.

C: It's an instrumental band that has a singer. I have a role in the band, and I have my little thing that I do. We're a team. Being in a rock band - at least a good band - is a team sport.

N: I just went to the drive-in a few weeks ago and some guy was working and was like 'you're in the STNNNG aren't you. I love your band. I play it back here in the kitchen all the time and everybody HATES it.' He loved it so much, he likes it but he can still piss everybody off with it. There's always gonna be a set of people who are looking for something like that.

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