Sleepy Feet, a band of students from Pitzer College, played at Art After Hours Oct. 13 and has appeared at many other venues this semester. Before and during the show, attendees were able to enjoy snacks and paint their own canvas creations, and I was able to have a unique talk with the band members after their set. The band is made up of Pitzer students Nick Morris ’12 (guitar and lead vocals), Annelise Stabenau ’14 (drums), Scott Hunter ’12 (bass), Dylan Farrel ’12 (guitar), and Will Harris a.k.a. Curly ’12 (banjo and keyboard). Sleepy Feet’s music is a unique blend of folk, bluegrass, punk, and rock. At the Art After Hours event, listeners were moved to dance in the fountain, splashing around, carefree and relaxed, just like Sleepy Feet’s sound.
Sleepy Feet’s Art After Hours performance kicked off a succession of shows. The band has planned a tour with stops in Berkeley, San Francisco, Davis, and Hollywood, from Oct. 13 to 22.
TSL: How did you all meet and decide to form a band?
Scott: Well I fell in love with Dylan, but he broke my heart, so I decided to make music with him instead of making love. And then, we both fell in love with Nick, but Nick made a similar decision, and then it was a domino effect, you know… Will, Annelise, we all fell in love…
TSL: In what year did you fall in love?
Scott: 1914. In wartime, you just really come together with the people around you. No, but the first incarnation of Sleepy Feet was me making Dylan freshman year just play acoustic guitars and then Will played with us sophomore year. Dylan was on drums originally, and then we were just kind of a jam band, and apparently we played a couple of shows sophomore year but we don’t remember them.
TSL: How did you guys come up with the name ‘Sleepy Feet’?
Scott: Me and Nick and Dylan, we used to just kind of sit in a circle and play acoustic guitars, like jam, and then our feet would always fall asleep and then we got “sleepy feet.” And then later we found out it’s a foot fetish, um… where like somebody falls asleep, and then… I don’t know, feet get licked and stuff… it’s kinda weird. So every time I see someone I don’t know at a show, I figure they were probably a pervert who found us on Google. By accident.
Annelise: Don’t Google “sleepy feet” without the words “music” or “band” or “Pitzer.”
Scott: Please do, it will broaden your personal and sexual horizons.
TSL: How do you come up with music? How do you compose your songs?
Scott: I record Nick while he’s sleeping and we just start singing and yodeling… and then occasionally, like, a song comes out.
Annelise: And then we translate it to English, that’s where the three of us come in…
TSL: Who writes the lyrics?
Annelise: I write all the lyrics, and honestly if I were to say out loud how I did it, then suddenly everyone would be doing what I do, and nothing would be secret anymore…
Nick: Dude, she listens to Fox News, that’s all.
Annelise: I watch Fox News, yeah… Scott and Nick and Dylan write the lyrics to the songs that we play. I lied… I watch Fox News, I lied, get it?
TSL: How would you guys describe your music, if you could describe it?
Sleepy Feet: “Deep fried butter—yellow, blue sometimes—popcorn jellybeans—chicken…—CHICKEN!”
TSL: I notice you guys have some upcoming concerts—are you planning on doing more tours?
Scott: We’re getting farther and farther away from Claremont, until eventually we make it to Jupiter, where I hear there’s this sick and obscure venue called The Armpit where we really aspire to play…
TSL: Do you guys think you will stay together after college?
Scott: That’s the idea. I think that’s the idea, hopefully.
Nick: We’re just gonna hug and never let go.
TSL: How did each of you get into playing music in the first place?
Scott: I started pounding on my grandma’s piano when I was just a wee one. And then I started playing guitar, and then I started playing mandolin, and then I started playing banjo, and then eventually I worked my way to the bass, which is what I play for Sleepy Feet now.
Dylan: I play guitar, and I guess I just like started playing music, in school, and I just played guitar one day, and now I’m playing guitar for Sleepy Feet… [Sleepy Feet] is the first real band, the first fun band I’ve played with.
Will a.k.a. Curly: I played keyboard as a kid. I took lessons for a few years, and then I started playing banjo I guess the Halloween of sophomore year when I was dressed as a redneck.
Nick: I took acid and then all of the sudden I could play music.
Annelise: I wanted to play drums, and my parents liked that idea so they let me… when I was around the age of 13.
TSL: For people who are interested, where can people listen to Sleepy Feet?
Scott: http://SLEEPYFEET.BANDCAMP.COM/ Our demo’s on there for a name-your-price basis, so you can get it for free, or you can give us money if you feel moved to.