Soulmatic interview w/ The Nghiems

A Q&A w/ an Oklahoma City band discussing their new album, how they got started, who helped contribute to their success, some exciting news and more..

Album artwork by Mike Allen IG @muddymallen //

Tell us who is currently in your band and what everyone does.

JAMES (Drums): David Nghiem- He writes the songs, sings and plays piano and keyboards. He also makes Vietnamese sandwiches for everyone after practice. Mike Allen- He plays bass, writes backing vocals and is an incredible artist. If you see any cool animation, posters and album art from this band in 2018, it’s because of Mike. Derek Moore- He played piano but has switched over to electric guitar recently. He’s a great bassist too, but it’d be weird having two basses. Dylan Eubanks - He plays guitar and fills in a lot of space-y textures. He also sings backing vocals. He’s also super funny.

Becky Carman- She’s been filling in on guitar when she can. She’s also does extra percussion among other things. She was actually one of the first people to join our band a long time ago, but kind of left to focus on other projects. It’s cool having her back. James Nghiem - I play drums, write things and send emails.

We want to know about the creation of your band. Tell us a little about your history. Where did the band come from? How did you all get together?

DAVID (Keys/Vox): James and I started playing as a two piece and met friends along the way that joined. The lineup has been different throughout the years with friends moving, and life things happening.

JAMES: In 2007, my brother David had been recording demos on cassette tapes trying to book a show locally. He was having a tough time getting any traction or even getting people to respond to his emails.

Around that time Ben Kweller had a show in Oklahoma City. Randomly, the guy who was supposed to help load in gear that night was meeting his girlfriend’s parents and he needed someone to fill in for him. I don’t even remember how we got the call, but my brother and I ended up spending the day carrying amps and helping set up portable stages for this show.

The guy we filled in for ended being Ryan Lindsey from the Starlight Mints. We passed a tape to him, which his band listened to during one of their practices. Andy Nunez, who played drums for the Starlight Mints and runs the Opolis with his wife Marian, ended up booking my brother because of that. I played drums, because he needed a drummer. I could barely play back then.

Since then, we’ve met a lot of people and had a lot of different line-up changes. It’s been a fun adventure.

Describe the band’s creative music-making process.

DAVID: I’ll usually come up with a guitar/vocals or piano/vocals demo and then work it out with James on drums.