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Homegrown 0

Q&A: The Airplanes Gaining Attention with Perfect Pop Songs from the Fayetteville Hills


Only In Arkansas - The Airplanes

The Airplanes are the brainchild of local musician Joshua Vest, who instead of honing his musical ability in front of audiences on the stages of The Smoke & Barrel Tavern, The Lightbulb Club, and George’s Majestic Lounge, has focused on crafting his perfect pop recordings in his home studio for the last several years.

Those recordings have caught the attention of music blogs all over the country recently, but until this past February, the band had never played a live show.

Vest recently enlisted guitarist Andrew Donovan (Voyageurs), bass player Joel Paul (SW/MM/NG), and drummer Rob Storms (Left Holding the Gun), and the foursome have spent the last several months bringing his ear-catching recordings to life for the stage.

The band has a couple shows coming up in Northwest Arkansas over the next few weeks. They’ll be at Crystal Bridges on Saturday, June 21 for the museum’s Summer Solstice Night at the Skyspace, and they are set to perform at The Lightbulb Club Friday, June 27 with excellent 60′s pop outfit, Jail Weddings.

We got in touch with them earlier this week, and they were nice enough to answer some questions for us.

What have you been listening to lately?

Andrew: Ted Lucas’s self titled record (1975) which got reissued on Yoga Records. It just has this mesmerizing effect on me that puts me in a soothing trance. The new Tony Molina record, Dissed and Dismissed, on Slumberland Records is extremely good as well. Brings me back to the Blue Album.

Joshua: Lately, it’s been a lot of Real Estate and Teenage Fanclub. I tend to obsess over a couple of bands for an extended period of time. Right now, it’s those two.

Rob: I’ve been listening to the new Umphrey’s McGee, Animals as Leaders, Protest the Hero, Bigelf and White Denim.

Tell us a bit about how the band started playing together. For the most part, it was just Joshua recording everything by himself until recently, correct?

Andrew: Yeah. I discovered The Airplanes on a blog and sent a message to the Soundcloud account to see if they were going to play some local shows. Joshua told me he didn’t have a band at the moment. I told him to hit me up if he needs a guitar player which he did a couple months later. We then got Joel Paul from SW/MM/NG to play bass for us.

Joshua: Yeah. Eventually, I scoped out Andrew’s band Voyageurs after he sent the message, loved what I heard, and we met up. Andrew, Rob, and Joel have worked out great. …

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Dustin Bartholomew is the co-founder of Fayetteville Flyer, an online publication covering all things news, art and life in Fayetteville, Arkansas since 2007. A graduate of the Department of English at the University of Arkansas and a lifelong resident of the area, he still lives in east Fayetteville with his son Hudson, daughter Evelyn, his wife Brandy, and his two dogs Lily and Steve. On occasion, he tickles the ivories in a local band called The Good Fear.

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