Lantern Lights is the nimble pop project of Gareth Schumacher and Kari Wasoba. The pair will release their first album tomorrow night at Foam Coffee and Beer (3359 Jefferson Avenue) -- the self-titled effort was the subject of a recent Homespun column.
You don't want to wait on this band. Wasoba and Schumacher are moving to LA in the next month, and this will be your only chance to catch the duo in St. Louis until it's no longer their hometown. And while Lantern Lights is brand new, both its members have long participated in this area's music scene. Christian Schaeffer asked them about the ups and downs of making music in River City and why they're making the move.
Christian Schaeffer: You'll be leaving St. Louis soon. Where are you headed, and what awaits you there?
Gareth Schumacher: We're headed to Los Angeles. It's been Kari's dream to move there since she was 18. Plus, she moved to New York for me while I finished school so I owe her one. What awaits us is a bit unknown. We'll have to figure out a way to start performing our songs and building some awareness of the Lantern Lights record. Ryan and Dan have been awesome collaborators but we can't take them with us, so I guess we'll be looking for a new rhythm section.
Kari Wasoba: It's a little scary but luckily we have friends out there, so we won't be completely without a tribe.
How has this town's musical community aided your own development as musicians?
Wasoba:The bands in this city are so different from each other and have such a unique sound for themselves, it makes it challenging to see how you can carve your own place here as well. We have so much support here it sort of blows us out of the water.
Schumacher: We really do. For my part, practically everything I know about being in a band, playing shows, and being part of a scene I learned in St. Louis. When I joined my first band (which became The Floating City) twelve years ago, I had no idea how to write songs or play in front of people. I just wanted to play loud music with my friends and we would figure out the other stuff eventually. We happened to get involved in a scene that included some uncannily talented bands, so creatively I benefited a lot just by going out and seeing amazing shows by people I knew and liked. My musical life was really shaped by all the people I hung out and played music with, and that was something I missed terribly when I first left in 2006. When Kari and I moved back two years ago the first thing I did was produce Humdrum's second album, and then I ended up joining the band because I had so much fun. So for the past two years I've been making records, playing a lot of guitar, and now we're putting out the Lantern Lights album. As musicians we couldn't ask for a more positive and supportive community.
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