An interview with Dan of Stars of Track and Field

How does your location influence your music?

Our little practice space is pretty dirty, but at least it is dry. We borrowed a lamp from a band down the hall two or three months ago after I accidentally fried ours. It emits a soft, elipsical glow on the ceiling. We have a little space heater which keeps the space above freezing. We have a courtyard adjacent to our space which lets in some light. There is a little black rubbermaid trash can in the corner. There are strange transients always knocking on our door or pacing around the building, and we have new neighbors. Sometimes they really loud, and they smoke cigarettes all the time. I think they live there. Kevin threw a bottle last night and left a nasty wilt in my hip.

What plans do you have for your upcoming full-length album?

Right now we are just trying to stay focused on the tunes we want to record. Two of them are new and unfinished. We plan to finish them up, begin recording in January and then release the record in May.

Why did you first write music?

I just loved to play, and writing was a natural, inevitable step for me. I don’t know what inspired Kevin first- I think he was somewhat of a choir boy growing up, and at some point he must have realized that he could write, play and sing his own songs. Jason was a strong athlete in high school and college and could have possibly gone pro, but he wrecked his shoulder or something. I think he probably started playing and writing music sometime after he realized that he wasn’t gonna be in the NFL or the Major Leagues.

How often do you practice as a band, and how is that affected by your living situations?

We usually play three days a week, sometimes two or four. Once in a while it’s tough leaving a cozy home or a beautiful woman to go jam with your buddies. I think our living situations barely affect our practice schedule, if at all. Our jobs definitely do, though. Is that part of our living situations?

Seeing as 2005 is nearing an end, what have been some of your favorite releases this year?

One of them was Spoon-“Gimmie Fiction”. My favorite new listen of the year must be Grandaddy-“Sophtware Slump”, but that record was made a couple of years back, so I guess it doesn’t count. I listen to a lot of Mexican radio which I don’t know much about..

What are you looking forward to doing in 2006?

We would love to go to Japan, but at this point it is still just an idea. There are Japanese vocabulary cards above the toilet in the bathroom in the apartment I am currently living in. We are excited to record our record and do a U.S. tour sometime next year.

Have you started thinking about resolutions for the new year?

I don’t make New Years resolutions anymore. The whole Roman calendar thing seems so limiting, because why not just make a change now, or later if you’re not ready? I just scratch my head, you know?

I think the band is goal oriented. Other than the music itself, the goals we consider and tend to discuss are the ones which consume our daily attention-money, basic transportation, good food, sleep, warmth, serenity in a mad world, basic health, fun, etc…

Sometimes we meet and talk about longer term goals. I think it’ll be more of the same for next year.. just new places, songs, people, experiences. As a band, I think we really just hope to make good music in 2006.

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