Sapphire Man, a quartet composed of undergraduate college students, began off as a piecemeal endeavor and at the moment continues influencing the native punk rock and home present scene.
The band is an eclectic mixture of buddies from quite a lot of majors who share a love of music. Weinberg junior Zeki Hirsch and Communication sophomore Sam Marshall play guitar and carry out vocals, McCormick junior Liam Warlick performs bass and Weinberg sophomore Leo McKenna drums.
The 4 slowly met one another and began composing music. Hirsch and Marshall have been the primary to satisfy and initially began taking part in music on their very own.
“Zeki and I first bonded over our related music tastes and determined we needed to be in a band that writes our personal songs,” Marshall mentioned. “From there, it was only a matter of discovering folks. And we did.”
Hirsch and Marshall first performed collectively at Hillel’s annual Latkepalooza throughout Fall Quarter 2021, after which they recruited Warlick and McKenna to kickstart the band.
The 4 held their first apply in early January 2022 within the Foster-Walker Complicated basement, Hirsch mentioned.
McKenna mentioned every member introduced their very own music tastes and inspiration to their practices. He mentioned whereas all members shared an appreciation of Pleasure Division and The Velvet Underground, amongst different bands, every musician attracts from their very own respective inspiration to gas their music.
After a couple of practices, the 4 mentioned they realized that they have been lacking a necessary component ― a band identify. Marshall, McKenna and Warlick accepted Hirsch’s proposition to call the band Sapphire Man, drawing inspiration from a portrait he noticed in artwork historical past Prof. Christina Normore’s Introduction to Medieval Artwork class throughout Fall Quarter 2021.
The portray is by Hildegard of Bingen, a twelfth century German mystic who had holy visions and wrote music. One in every of her portfolios, “The Man in Sapphire Blue,” depicts Christ as a light-weight blue determine. Hirsch discovered the portray intriguing and favored the anomaly of the identify “Sapphire Man.”
“It doesn’t actually imply something. It means no matter you make of it,” Hirsch mentioned.
Marshall mentioned though it attracts inspiration from quite a lot of sources, the band is finally “song-oriented,” specializing in how every individual and instrument contributes to the music, slightly than aiming to make one individual stand out.
On drums, McKenna mentioned he makes an attempt to keep away from flashy drumming and follows a extra fixed rhythm. He prides himself on serving to the band keep its circulate throughout units.
“Drumming (is) about protecting all people in examine and ensuring the band doesn’t sound unhealthy,” McKenna mentioned. “That’s what I attempt to do.”
Sapphire Man performed its first present at a home on Simpson Road final April.
Although the band has performed at a couple of different gigs, the 4 agreed their favourite exhibits have been the home exhibits they performed final Halloween. The band performed in two totally different homes — as soon as in a good friend’s basement and as soon as with one other band — whereas sporting Halloween costumes. Hirsch mentioned there have been greater than 100 folks current at every efficiency, which contributed to nice power each instances.
Whereas Sapphire Man has been practising collectively for greater than a yr, it nonetheless faces some logistical challenges. Marshall mentioned discovering a apply house and carving out time to apply collectively following educational breaks is tough.
Whereas balancing college and extracurriculars at NU might be difficult, the band members mentioned they get pleasure from practising collectively as a approach to decompress from the calls for of the college.
“For all of us, it’s a circulate state form of factor,” Warlick mentioned. “You’re solely desirous about what you’re taking part in, you don’t actually have time to consider the rest, and also you simply really feel fully reset afterwards.”
Hirsch mentioned the band lastly has sufficient materials to document a whole album. In the end, he mentioned the band sees its music as a constructive contribution to the present rock music scene and a beacon of hope for a deteriorating style. Hirsch mentioned he hopes bands like Sapphire Man can encourage an awakening.
“It’s actually unhappy to see (the present state of rock music) as a result of it seems like a really neutered, very company, bland model (of music),” Hirsch mentioned. “Nevertheless it’s additionally actually hopeful when a tiny basement is jam full of teams of random children. I actually suppose that’s the way forward for rock music.”
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