Tell us your real names, country of birth, date of birth and childhood experience.

Sav: My real name is Savage Beast (true story), I was either born or not born in Schrodinger’s box and my childhood experience is the kind of experience I list on my resume.

Katie: Katie Larson vs alter ego Lady Arson, a traveling circus fire eater performer. Born in the US March 21st 1996.

Michael: Michael Dause, born the same day as Will Beyers. As a child, my drum set seemed really big, but they keep getting smaller and smaller every year.

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Tell us about your music career, your band name, musical background, experience and skills.

Sav: Katie and I met in our high school philharmonic orchestra in Traverse City, MI when we were just 15 and 16.  We’d known each other for years, and had even gone on the same camping trips with a mutual friend of ours – but we were both too introverted to talk to each other.  We were in a classical quartet together, and we also stayed after school and played Led Zeppelin and MGMT arrangements in a club called “Alternative Styles Club.”  When our teacher asked for volunteers to represent the Club for an upcoming concert, Katie and I were the only two to raise our hands – so Katie came over to my house to rehearse, and we ended up playing the White Stripes and becoming a band that night.

Despite growing up in musical families, neither of us expected to ever become full-time musicians, even when we started the band.  Both of our fathers are pianists and both of our mothers are singers, though Katie’s family is more classically oriented and my parents were more rooted in the Nashville scene of RnB, folk, and country.  None of them ever pressured us to be anything except ourselves, and naturally that led to us finding each other, and discovering a kind of musical chemistry.

Six years later (as of 9/22/17), we’ve played thousands of shows, opened for incredible artists like Rusted Root, The Wailers, Keller Williams, Andrew Bird, Martin Sexton, Joan Baez, Dar Williams, The Decemberists and more, scored films and arrangements for orchestras, and toured the country multiple times.  It’s been an exhilarating ride of breakdowns, broken instruments, crashed couches, fan-mail gas cards and breathtaking views, and we love every second of it.

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Tell us about your genre, concept and idea behind your music video and the song.

Katie: “Odyssey” took us by surprise. The song was a last minute addition to the album, it started as a voice memo Sav had tucked away for a year before we worked it up. While we were making demos, we were fleshing the song out using electric guitar and electric bass, to give it more of a rock feel. However, once we hit the studio, we had to learn to trust our instincts. Time was short, and it felt like we were climbing a million emotional mountains a day to get through everything going on in the studio and in our own worlds. We made a decision to remain authentic to each song rather than a genre, and something about Odyssey was calling to be more stripped back and acoustic guitar and cello driven. It’s the only song on the album that we recorded natural to our own speed instead of a click track keeping time. When it came time to name the album, Odyssey felt like the recurring answer. The chorus “I’m not weak” was a sort of mantra to combat the emotional, mental, financial, and physical stresses we were going through at the time.

After “Odyssey” was released and started picking up radio airplay, it was time to put together a music video concept that could help introduce a broader audience to who we are as a band and what our message is. I think the song speaks for itself, and we worked closely with the amazing folks at Practical Productions to develop 4 scenes with beautiful visuals. The video starts in a cozy basement practice space. We are all introverts, so most of our creative process occurs when we have a quiet relaxed space to ourselves. It’s tough for us to share our songs with the world but we’ve learned that one of the strongest things you can do is be vulnerable in the face of fear. By the end of the video we end up performing at an outdoor amphitheater in front of a crowd of friends and family. This final location is the representation of us sharing our story with people. We tour 240+ days a year, and it’s a constant test of our strength, but it’s really been a learning curve to believe in our instincts.

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Tell us everything that we need to know about you as a musician and the ups and downs you have faced in the music business.

Sav: As musicians, we try to be risk-takers. We’re all really passionate about learning new things, and try to incorporate that learning into our music.  As a result, our music has been described as “genreless” or “genre-bending.”  We tour with all kinds of amazing artists and have played a lot of different venues.  We’ve learned to be flexible and improvisational, both on and offstage.  We face a lot of van and trailer breakdowns, a handful of stereotypes, and lots of natural disasters that sometimes derail our plans – yet we find a way to overcome those things, every time.

A lot of that overcoming is due in part to our manager, Amber Buist, who has the resume of a travel agent, a crisis worker for the state, a foster parent, and a psychologist – which is kind of the perfect resume for managing a band.  She’s taught us a ton of things, but the ones that we put into practice the most are asking for what you need, and walking into every environment with the intent to create mutual respect.  Having those tools in our back pockets changes the story someone may have written for us based on their experiences, and often times we walk away with a lot of lasting friendships.

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Tell us about other members of your band, music producer, crew or music video director, how the song was recorded and how the music video was shot.

Katie: In 2013 Sav and I released a folkier album called “Bittersweet”. We worked with a producer on that album, and then in 2016 took a fully hands on approach with our 6 song EP “Parking Lot”. For Odyssey we had the opportunity to split the difference and be producers on the album along with Jason Lehning. He’s a great engineer and kept the process very open and collaborative.

The music video for Odyssey was shot in 2 days at the end of August in Northern Michigan. We were in between tours, and Practical Productions came on board to make it happen. We were introduced to JohnPaul at Practical back in 2013 when we wanted to make a music video for our song Lemons in Chamomile off of Bittersweet. He used his gear and helped work with the video students at the Traverse City career tech center to brainstorm and execute a music video with us. While working on “Odyssey”, they had some incredibly innovative ideas, including a partially submerged platform that allowed us to perform on water, and a smoke filled room complete with dehydrated kale to look like debris floating through the wind. After the final take of our final performance at the outdoor amphitheater scene, the sky immediately started downpouring rain. All the people in the audience helped us get our gear into our trailer, and then we drove through the night to start off another tour. It was crazy, but the final product is worth it.

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Tell us how long you have been in the music industry, your experience and your future goal.

Sav: We are relatively young in the music industry, having only started the band six years ago.  We are currently 21 and 22 (depending on which one of us you talk to), and we’ve trialed and errored a lot.  When we were 17 and 18, we were offered scholarships to Berklee College of Music, and we really considered going, since (as mentioned) we’re really passionate about learning new things.  At the same time, we were offered a production deal in NYC.  We had a 24 hour period in which we couldn’t defer the scholarships, and the decision-making process basically led to us asking the same question: Did we want to go to school to learn how to be professional musicians, or did we want to go be professional musicians?

We chose to take the production deal.  Though it became renegotiable in February 2016 and we chose to move forward independently recording and producing our EP, Parking Lot, we learned a lot about the inner workings of the industry.  It was amazing to get that inside look at it before we were 21. Later in 2016, our EP garnered interest from Sony Masterworks, and we signed with them in December and put out our first major label debut, Odyssey, in August of 2017.

Our goal has always been to put out music that remains authentic to who we are, but finds a way to express common threads in human thinking.  Sometimes our writing can come from a personal place and serve as therapeutic after long tours and craziness in the biz.  To be able to share it with people and connect on a very human level is something that makes the ups and downs worthwhile.  We have built connections and families and homes away from home all around us, across the country, through music.

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Tell us what inspires you to write, compose and sing.

Katie: Miso soup, constellations, lost jackets, family road trips, Edgar Allen Poe, anxiety, winter in Michigan, the color blue, touring, meeting other artists. We are constantly growing and inspire each other, and all come from musical families who are very supportive and encouraging.

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Tell us the secret behind making a hit song.

Sav: If we knew the secret behind making a hit song, we would be making bank…jk.

Honestly, it’s pretty random.  I think a hit song just connects on a large level and has a lot of back-end support or you just got lucky.

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Tell us the message you will like to pass to your fans out there.

Katie: We want to spread the message that it’s important to be authentic, be vulnerable, and be present. Don’t be afraid to #changethestory.

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Tell the kind of advice you will give to an upcoming artist.

Sav: Our motto has always been “ask for what you need.”  Wherever you are, there is someone in your community who supports music in some way, or has really good advice.  We grew up in a town with some amazingly talented musicians, and they took us under their wing when we were younger and taught us some really incredible things about theory and music business.  There are people all around you who are looking to help – the key is to ask.

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Elaborate on your music careers, albums, songs, tours, recognition or awards you might have obtained.

Michael: Over the last six years, the band has played well over 1000 shows, released 3 albums and 1 EP, toured through both the US and Canada, and have revived multiple regional awards for the albums Bittersweet and Parking Lot EP.

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List Radio or TV Stations that are airing your songs and blogs that have featured you as well and send message to them via this platform.

Katie: Shoutout to our longtime friends and supporters at Local Spins (especially John Sinkevics) also to Detroit writer Gary Graff (who dared us to cover Rush during SXSW), and Michael Bialas for publishing an article in which I told the world I peed in a cup in the van going down the highway, and more importantly for featuring a premiere for our “Odyssey” music video on Huffpost.

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Tell us how you write your lyrics, compose, sing and record in the studio.

Sav: Writing is a pretty personal process for the both of us.  There’s not a lot of alone-time on the road, so most of our writing is done after long tours, when we’re home and have time to process everything that’s happened.  Katie and I will write songs individually and bring them together with our drummer, Michael, for arrangements – then, in the studio, we’ll expand on our ideas.  Katie and I are multi-instrumentalists (we play anything with strings), so we end up playing most of the instruments on our records, which gives us the opportunity to really play exactly the parts we want on our songs.

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Name five biggest artists that you like.

Sav: Mutually speaking, we are huge fans of Andrew Bird, Vulfpeck, The Decemberists, Beck and yMusic.

Michael: Death Cab For Cutie, The National, Iron & Wine, Sufjan Stevens, and The Roots.

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Name the artists you have collaborated with before in your songs or artists you are willing to collaborate with in the future if you have the chance to do so.

One of our favorite things to do is arrange and perform strings for studio albums and live shows, ranging from funk to folk to pop to gypsy jazz to alternative rock. I used to be terrified of improvisation so collaboration helps me get outside of my comfort zone. For our album Odyssey we reached out to some of our favorite artists and they agreed to play on the record, including Jenny Conlee (of the Decemberists), Keller Williams, Kaki King, Dominic Davis, Carter Gravatt (Carbon Leaf). We keep an ever evolving bucket list of things to do and people to meet- we’d love to have a jam session with Chris Thile, Ben Folds, and Jack White. Preferably at one time.

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Give us the links to your website and your entire social network.

Website: www.theaccidentalsmusic.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ theaccidentals

Twitter: www.twitter.com/ moreaccidentals

Instagram: www.instagram.com/ theaccidentalsmusic

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/user/ the_accidentals

Album: Odyssey –https://TheAccidentals.lnk. to/Odyssey

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Give us the links to your various stores for fans to buy your music.

Online Store: www.theaccidentalsmusic.com

iTunes:

Spotify:

Amazon:

 

Tell us about your happiest day and saddest day.

Sav: My saddest day was today (11/1) when a car rolled over both of my violins (acoustic and electric) and destroyed them…they are insured and we have lots of kind people helping us out (shoutout to Mark Schwartz Violins and Liquid Violins), but it was still a pretty painful loss.  Cheesy as it sounds, it’s hard to keep track of what the happiest day for me is because a lot of them are pretty happy.  When you stay present and have a lot of gratefulness for what is around you, there’s lots of beauty to find even on the tough days.

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Tell us how you will spend a million dollars.

Sav: Donating to humane societies and wolf conservation centers, buying instruments for kids who can’t afford them, and saving enough for a lifetime supply of tacos.

Katie: Start a recording studio/luthier workshop/rehearsal space/community venue in our hometown. We might eventually work up to that regardless of the million dollars.


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