Live for Live Music had a chance to sit down with the guys from Wild Adriatic during their swing through the northeast before heading off on the European leg of their tour. Wild Adriatic, a band from the Saratoga Springs, NY area has been on an ever growing uptick in the music scene since the beginning of the summer. L4LM first met up with them at their debut performance at moe.down, but until recently, did not get to talk with the band. Wild Adriatic consists of singer/guitar player Travis Gray, bassist Rich Derbyshire and drummer Mateo Vosganian.
How did you guys meet and eventually form the band?
Gray: Mateo and I met when we were little, little children. In high school, we started playing in a band. Then he went to college and I was still in high school. We met up a few years later and started playing together. Rich was in another band at the time, a metal band. Then we got him to play bass in our band. It’s been almost three years.
Wild Adriatic: 2012 was a really good year. It’s when things started to go down. It really never ended. We are still riding that wave right now. May 25th is when we went to a three piece band. We had a keyboard player, have a keyboard player. We still play with him. That’s our friend, Pat Daley, who plays with us when he’s not working.
Who’s been your biggest influence?
Wild Adriatic: There’s too many to say that there’s one “biggest influence”. We all love Led Zeppelin. Then, yeah, as a band collectively, it’s Led Zeppelin. It’s the one band we can always turn on.
Vosganian: As far as the drumming, especially the drummer from My Morning Jacket, who I listen to constantly, is my biggest influence. I listen to that band constantly. He’s real subtle and he’s a good player.
How have you progressed as a band since not having a keyboard player?
We had a lot of space to fill, without not having that layer any more. Travis has really stepped up his guitar playing and pulled it in vocally. Mateo has really stepped up his drums. We’ve had to become more dynamic in our overall song writing. We are trying to mess around with songs and turn a three minute song into a ten minute song. We just try to do what we love. If we’re digging it, that’s what we’re going to do. We know each others limits and how to push them. It’s exciting. Always questioning ourselves….is that the best thing we could be doing there?
How did moe.down all come together? You must have been psyched.
It came together and had some nice recommendations made to Jon Topper (moe. manager). Months went by and then about a week and a half before moe.down, we were asked if we were still available. We were like, hell yeah! The three of us stayed the whole weekend. It was really cool to meet a lot of people. We stayed in the general camping grounds, and people would walk by our tent, realize who who are. We got a great response and made friends for life. There’s been a lot of moe.down family stopping by our shows.
What’s your best take-away from moe.down?
The people that we met. They keep coming to our shows. They’re very dedicated fans. This one fan, Jeremy, is helping to share our music on a moe. online community just trying to spread the word. We also had about a half hour conversation late Sunday night with Jon Topper about how to grow a band. He gave us really cool advice about what to pay attention to and how to build a career. It was clear this guy really knows what he’s was talking about. We never even looked at ourselves as a jam band before but we’ve played and fit into other festival type situations and we’ve been more open and embracing it, just pushing ourselves. We don’t even know what we are when we are so close to our own music.
Europe. Tell us about that.
We are getting ready to go. It’s happening soon. We got a random email about six months ago from a guy who owns a booking agency out there, someone turned him on to the record and wanted us to come over to Europe and do five weeks. We did our due diligence and research and checked up on this. We talked to several bands that worked with this company, and everyone is getting our hopes up pretty bad. We’re ready. The vibe, you can feel it, is so ancient.
Is there one place you’re looking forward to over there?
Belgium is where we’re starting, and it’s so exciting. The owner of the company lives there too so we will have a nice place to stay. Spain though. We’re playing with Moreland and Arbuckle, a Kansas based blues band and they’re on tour in Spain. We’re opening for them on a random Tuesday in Madrid and the show is already half sold out. So it’s like, why would we go home? I saw they had more dates after our tour dates, so maybe we should change our flights home.
It seems like you guys have stepped it up by going to Europe.
We’re still these three guys and we are saying, let’s just do it. Throw caution to the wind. Let’s do it. If we lose a little bit of money, eh whatever. The worst you can get is that I get to hang out with my two best friends in Europe and play music. Even if nobody shows up to our shows, they will be the sweetest 25 practices we’ve ever had.
You will be back before the end of the year. Are you planning a big show for New Year’s Eve?
We are actually. We will be playing the Putnam Den in Saratoga and we’re doing two sets that night. As midnight hits, we’re going to do an all soul set. We will do 6 or 7 classic soul tunes. It will be a pretty good night of everything, everything we are all about. It will be fun for everyone.
What do you have planned moving into next year?
We’re going to be moving to Austin. We rented a house and will be playing every week in the same spot. We’ve played out there a bunch but this will help a lot. It will be cold here and it won’t be cold there and it’ll be great! We are going to release an EP. It will have two new songs, two B sides from the last record and two covers and then we’re just preparing for the next record. We’re planning a live thing at some time during festival season, put out a live EP. January 2016 will be the new record release. moe.down is Labor Day weekend and even if we don’t play it, we’re probably going to go.
Do you have anything else you’d like to just say to all your fans?
We’ll see you out there. Keep spreading the word.
Further information on Wild Adriatic, as well as the full listing of their tour dates, can be found on their official website.