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Water Color Weekend [Interview]

We caught up with US indie-rock, alt-folk band Water Color Weekend to find out about their recently-released self-titled album, what we can expect from their live shows, their plans for 2018 and more.

Meet Water Color Weekend; Davis Harper (lead vocal/guitar), Nick McElmurry (trombone/synth/vocal), Michael Hoffman (bass), Jacob Gilmore (drums), Norris Turnidge (guitar).


Tell us a little about the origins of Water Color Weekend.

We started out as friends in a six-piece playing shows around the Modesto area, and then Nick (trombone/keys/vocals) and I (Davis) moved out to Santa Cruz for school, which is where we met the rest of the current members.

We’d meet once or twice a week in the music Co-op on campus to practice, and after months of working on the set, we started playing around Santa Cruz and the bay area.


Your new self-titled album just dropped. What were the aims & ideas behind it?

This album was written over two years ago when we were just getting started, and the idea was that we’d call it Water Color Weekend since it was the first batch of songs that we ever played live. It was a pretty cool experience watching them evolve with the new band-members: Michael Hoffman on bass, Norris Turnnidge on guitar, and Jacob Gilmore on drums. They all bring some unique qualities to the music, and it’s been a blast working with them on these recordings.

A lot of the songs feel like introspective reflections based around topics such as social anxiety, sense of belonging, and death, often through a vaguely optimistic lens. The goal with the lyrics was to leave the meaning open-ended depending on the listener.

A lot of the songs feel like introspective reflections based around ideas such as social anxiety, sense of belonging, and death. The goal with the lyrics was to leave the meaning open-ended depending on the listener though.


Listen to Water Color Weekend’s latest album on Spotify


How does your new record compare to your previous releases?

It’s definitely got a more rocky feel with the crackling, spacey guitar solos (Norris crafts some pretty rad tones), and more energetic, complex drum parts. Our last album, Strange, Strange Days at Sea was a lot more mellow in comparison, and was less electric guitar-centric. I think we were looking to transition to a louder sound that would be more fun to play live.


How do usually you approach the process of songwriting & creating new music?

Usually one of us will bring a song or even just a riff to jam on at practice and see where it goes. It definitely takes a lot of patient communication, trial and error, and constantly reworking. It can take a while to build into a cohesive piece, but eventually we’re all smiling and agreeing on the parts together. We all like to write songs individually, so there is a lot going on when we come together to work on new stuff.




When and where can we catch you on tour?

Santa Cruz Music Festival on the 11th! More dates to be announced soon.


What can we expect from your live shows?

Loud electric guitar and a bad joke here and there.



Got any more big plans for 2018?

We’ve got some music videos planned/in the works, and we’re working on new original/live material.


Who have been your biggest influences on your music? And which artists are you listening to at the moment?

We all have different influences, and are always looking for new music!

Michael (bassist) is influenced by artists like Radiohead, Flaming Lips, and Animal Collective, as well as classic psychedelic rock and lo-fi hip hop.

Norris (lead guitar) likes rock n roll and some emo stuff, also classics and 60’s-90’s bb. Johnny Marr of The Smiths, John Frusciante formerly of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Johnny Bond of Catfish and the Bottlemen.

Davis (lead vocals and guitar) and Nick (trombone/synth/vocals) listen to indie rock artists like Modest Mouse, Deerhunter, Pavement, Wilco, Grizzly Bear, The Radar Brothers, and many more!

Last but not least, Jacob (drummer) is into a variety of progressive rock bands (Tool, Animals as Leaders, and Periphery to name a few) as well as old and contemporary jazz and R&B.


Thanks to Water Color Weekend for speaking to us! Make sure to follow the band on Facebook for all the latest and listen to their latest album in full above.

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