The West Front came in this week to film for the blog, and we had a BLAST! Chris and Eddie did a phenomenal job performing for us, and were a pleasure to get to know as well!!! They were so nice, that they even designed a "West Front" Band Tshirt for me, with a yogi and a guitar to say "This mom Rocks!". I love the shirt, almost as much as I love the band!
Please check out their acoustic performance, after our sit down interview below! In addition, for more information on the band, head on over to their website! They have a new EP " Only the Hero" due out this spring as well. I'm a HUGE fan of the band as musicians, and people! Anyone who can dance like Chris, is "A-OK" with me!
LINDSAY: How long has The West Front been a band?
THE WEST FRONT: Good question. Chris and I started playing out together, as early as 2001, under the
name "The West Front," but Tony and I have been playing together since 1999. So officially, since 2001.
LINDSAY: How did you get the name for the band?
EDDIE: When it was time to come up with a band name, I tried to be as honest as possible. Tony and I first started to perform together back in high school... at a couple of different venues on West Front Street in Red Bank. So it only seemed fair to acknowledge where this all began, and it all started on "The West Front."
CHRIS: I remember sitting and writing name after name. I came up with
Red Lines... I’m sure there was more detailed meaning behind it at the time, but I do remember thinking the meaning would be about never stopping when you get stuck at that
line or red stop sign. I also remember Eddie coming up with Blue Discover…
and well, I still have no clue about that one. After hearing about his idea for
The West Front, I liked it for the simple reason, that it could be just as cool as STP.
LINDSAY: How would you describe the band's sound? Have you ever been compared to any national well known bands?
EDDIE: I think early on, when it all started, friends would joke around that we sounded
confused, like "Dave Matthews meets Metallica." I think that was just a byproduct of having an acoustic songwriter who wished he sounded as good as John Mayer, backed by a hard hitting drummer who thought he was Morgan Rose, and looks like Vin Diesel. We also
had a bassist at the time (my brother Nick) who wished we were playing reggae. So yea, we were confused.
CHRIS: Early on I do remember people saying we sounded like Dave Matthews. As time
has gone on and we have developed our own sound, people have made mention of Nickelback...Pearl Jam (the band after the grunge days lol).
LINDSAY: What goes into the writing process? Is it one person with an idea, or do you work collectively?
THE WEST FRONT: Generally speaking, Eddie writes the songs and lyrics on the acoustic, then brings them to the table. That's when the songs really come to life. From that point on, it's completely a team effort. Chris and Tony are very vocal, and have strong ideas and a great sense for song structure and the rhythm parts. We've also recently started to bounce ideas off of and collaborate with our producer and close friend, Arnie Brown. "I also rely heavily on the opinions of my dad and younger brothers, who aren't afraid of being honest with me. So although the songs are born on the acoustic, becoming full fledged
songs that make it to an album, is completely a team effort" (Eddie).
LINDSAY: I know you have an EP coming out this spring, do you have any other EP's or albums from the past out there? Will you continue to make new music?
THE WEST FRONT: Yea, we currently have another EP out called "Lost My Fire," that was recorded back in 2013. This was our first album with Nemati back on bass (It's available on iTunes, Amazon, Soundcloud, Spotify, etc). We also did a couple of other EP's early on ("Airport Parking Only," and "587") during the years when Eddie's brother Nick was still with the band.
"And to answer your other question, yes. I can't foresee us ever stopping. I'm always going to have that need to write, and Chris won't leave, so.. I guess I'm stuck with him. I think that's because we're doing it for all the right reasons. We honestly love playing together, whether it's at a rehearsal, or its playing together in front of thousands at Starland Ballroom. I've honestly tried to put down the guitar, and you know, grow up, but always seem to come right back to it. Writing songs allows me to let my guard down, and to be honest with myself. It's a bit like therapy."
“Damn right he’s stuck with me. It’s a bromance at it’s finest!”
LINDSAY: What would be the main goal of the band?
THE WEST FRONT: Obviously to play on Lindsay Klein's Homegrown Spotlight.
Other than that, to not forget why we're doing this. To truly enjoy playing together, and to write music that might inspire someone else to do the same. It's only fair. Others inspired us, and now it's our turn. All too often grown ups and parents tell their kids that they can do whatever it is they want if they put their minds to, but fail to lead by example. We want to lead by example, and play on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. And we want to do so as a "local unsigned band" with regular jobs. For no other reason, than to inspire some kid out there who might be watching to push the boundaries, to change the rules of the game" (Eddie).
CHRIS: I would agree. I love playing music. I love listening to music. Music helps
me with so many things in my life. As you know, I have had some hard times as of late… but the second I take my thrown… all gone. Power, passion and excitement when I start playing. People always ask me "Why do you make all those faces when playing? Why do you have your head down alot of the time and eyes closed?" I am lost in my own world when I start playing. I want someone who is having a hard time to look up on stage at me and enjoy the passion… enjoy the sound… and just forget what is bothering them. Even if it is just for a few minutes. Everyone deserves some kind of happiness. I have had many close friends and even complete strangers come up to me after a show or after hearing a song somewhere and tell me…Your music is amazing... I love this song or that song… It really meant something to me… Hearing people say things like that is the goal. Knowing that myself and my brothers have made someone enjoy life.
LINDSAY: Aw, thank you for the compliment, and I loved having you on the show! Obviously, I've seen Chris's dancing skills, what does each member of the band contribute,
THE WEST FRONT: Chris is our Rockstar. Like, he's not pretending. His look… always having a beautiful woman (women at times) around him… meeting and hanging with all the famous acts out there… he’s a machine. Eddie is the dreamer, who actually thinks he's going to play on The Tonight Show. Eddie has the perfect look and the attitude to make those dreams a reality. And Tony is the best musician in the band, who knows the industry well. He is our realist, and brings Eddie back down to Earth, and keeps his drummer and singer from killing each other. Chenz, well, he brings the Rolling Rocks.
LINDSAY: If each member of the band was a celebrity or superhero, who would they be, and why?
THE WEST FRONT: Clearly Tony would be Emilio Estevez. The simple fact the he looks just like him and coaches ice hockey. Chris would either be Donkey Kong, Animal, or Vin Diesel. No need to explain. Chenz, perhaps Charlie Chaplin, because they both have nothing to say. And Eddie would probably be Spider-Man, just to hang upside down and kiss Mary Jane.
LINDSAY: Where do you guys get most of your inspiration for your music?
THE WEST FRONT: When we were younger, I'm sure we emulated or tried to sound like our favorite bands, but now our inspiration comes straight out of life, our experiences, our joys and heartbreaks. It comes out of observing things through a different lens. Internalizing our experiences, taking a step back, and finding the commonality in
LINDSAY: If you were signed tomorrow and were asked to quit your jobs, would you do it?
THE WEST FRONT: Chris would, in a heartbeat. He was ready to quit his job and
go on tour when we opened up for Fuel, or when he found out we were performing on Lindsay Klein's Homegrown Spotlight. Eddie and Tony on the other hand have families and mortgages, so probably not.
CHRIS: I’ll convince Eddie if need be. And as long as I can show
a legal document showing Tony’s wife we will be getting paid and sending money home, Tony is game.
LINDSAY: Where do you guys like to gig the most? Do you have any tours in mind as a goal?
EDDIE: We play out a lot in Asbury Park (The Saint, The Stone Pony).
I lived there for several years and love the scene.
CHRIS: I love the Saint and Pony because of our relationships with
the owner’s and promoters, Scott at The Saint and Kyle at The Stone Pony. I loved playing on stage at Starland Ballroom.. sound was killer. I would love to play a stadium… particularly
Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre.
LINDSAY: I love featuring acoustic tunes because it really showcases your raw talent, had you ever done something like this before? Would you want to do it again?
EDDIE: Yes, but never just with Chris. The songs are all born on the acoustic guitar,
so I actually prefer playing our songs that way. We would love to do it again sometime, live in the control room. Perhaps we'll visit 105.5 the day before we play on Fallon.
CHRIS: I have never done a performance acoustic until now. And it was great. Loved
the entire time playing and hanging with you and Johnny. I will do it again for sure… can’t wait to do it on your show again.
LINDSAY: Make some new music and come on back after the baby is born! I'll even get on the camera for the interview next time! Give me one horror or horribly hilarious story about a performance?
THE WEST FRONT: You mean like when we opened up for
Johnny Gallagher Jr… the curtain opens, and Chenz forgot to turn his amp on!?... He stood there strumming his guitar, but no sound came about. Or maybe when Chris had his photographer buddy Mark shoot us at The Stone Pony when we opened up for
Tom Keifer; only to later find out that it was Mark Weiss, legendary Rock photographer who's photographed everybody in the business.
LINDSAY: If a band just starting off in the industry came up and asked you for one piece
of advice, as a local original band, what would you tell them?
EDDIE: Don't quit your day job. And, if you aspire to play "big shows," learn how to
sell tickets. Kidding, kind of. First off, play because you love playing. When it stops becoming something you love, stop playing. Then I would tell them, to decide whether it's just for fun (a men's softball team) or if it's something more then that. If
you want to play with the big boys, you have to start acting like one. There are no shortcuts. You can't do it alone. You need to assemble a team of talent behind you (essentially what labels do). From photographers, to producers, to videographers, booking
agents, graphic artists, website developers, a beautiful radio DJ, etc. Record your shows and rehearsals. Learn to rehearse to a click track. Be overly critical. Does your band look like a band you would follow? Would you buy your own album? Would you go out
on a rainy Wednesday night to see your own band? Personally, I knew when I answered "no" to all of these questions, that things needed to change. So, to summarize all of that... love what you're doing and decide why you're doing it. Find your "why?"
CHRIS: Play your f***ing a** off. Beat your drums. Break those strings. Yell until
you can’t yell anymore. And when people tell you to be quiet… or say you’re wasting your time… get a real job… you’re no good… PLAY HARDER AND LOUDER. Play music because you can. And let the world either love you or hate you. But remember when your playing,
play that music because you love to… more than anything in your world. Don’t let someone judge your talent like those stupid shows on TV. No one can tell that you can’t do what you love!
LINDSAY: Time to promo all that is The West Front, tell us anything you'd like to add about yourselves and all of your social media outlets where our fans can find you!
THE WEST FRONT: Check us out at:
The West Front
Home page of The West Front, a group
or "Like" us on www.facebook/thewestfront
We're also on Spotify, Soundcloud,
YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and iTunes.
@TheWestFront on Twitter
@thewestfront on Instagram (#thewestfront,
#twf, #crazyaslove, #hotdrummer)
Check out our music video for
Crazy As Love
on YouTube and our website.
Shout outs to Damian Dazervin (our
photographer), Scott Stampler (The Saint), Kyle Brendle (The Stone Pony), Mark Weiss, Arnie Brown (our close friend and producer; owner at The Jam Room in Howell, NJ), Ben Puglisi (DAA Entertainment), Jeff Crespi (friend and photographer) and to the one and
only LINDSAY KLEIN (Uh… even though we are talking to you right now)! #babyontheway #eatcake