Band to bring new sound to Troy

Alyse Nelson
Features Editor

As the DJ plays in another part of the bar, Color Collective members set up equipment, perform sound checks and eventually introduce themselves.
The crowd at the Front Porch warms up to the set list consisting of covers of familiar songs peppered with originals.
With the lead singer dressed in Chacos and the drummer sporting a hot pink beard, the group of guys looks as different as the musical influences they cite.
The group has come together with the same goal: to bring new music to Troy and grow as musicians.
Now gathered around a living room, equipment stacked in the corner, the band pauses a video game to conduct an interview.
“OK, guys, we have to answer questions now!” exclaims lead singer Andrew Spry, a junior criminal justice major from Dothan.
“We want to introduce a variety of music to the area,” Spry begins. “We feel it’s mostly country (currently in the area).”
All four members have performed in other groups or with different lineups, but they recently became Color Collective.
Spry and guitarist Sam Nolen, a junior social sciences major from Bonifay, Florida, began working together during their sophomore year at Troy.
“Andrew (and I) had collaborated during the year with song ideas and shared very similar tastes in music,” Nolen said. “At the beginning of this semester, we found Alex and Randall, and after playing together we said, ‘Hey, let’s make this something!’”
Drummer Alex Tjoland, a junior music industry major from Warner Robins, Georgia, met bassist Randall Bassham, a freshman marine biology major from Hatton, through Troy University’s band POPulus.
The group met through mutual friends and has been creating its own sound since then.
“Alex is hands down the best working drummer that this university has seen,” Nolen said. “He can easily play any genre with no hang-ups, and the same goes for Randall, whose bass playing is solid and drives everything home. Andrew plays a great creative force for the band and pushes our ideas forward.”
“We all have different influences,” Spry said, citing The Strokes and Jimi Hendrix.
“I think as a musician you have to collaborate with other people because otherwise the creative process becomes stagnant, you know?” Nolen said, mentioning that he is influenced by a mix of ’70s rock and today’s indie scene.
Tjoland references Rush, while Bassham said, “My bass lines are Green Day.”
“I guess indie,” Tjoland responds when asked to define Color Collective by a single genre.
“I like improving my own skills,” said Bassham as he discussed playing with the others.
“He used to suck, but now he’s just mediocre,” Tjoland jokes.
“My favorite part is just making mistakes,” says Spry. “It always turns into something cooler than what was planned.”
When asked about the band’s plans for the future, Color Collective expresses high hopes.
“We’re strong enough to go somewhere with this, but like it is around here, it’ll be hard,” said Spry. “In the next year, I hope to see us getting more gigs in the Panama City Beach and Birmingham areas.”
Also in the works for the group is an original EP.
Recording begins soon, and the final product will include five songs, but the beginning of their music career together has not been described as glamorous by any of the band mates.
“It isn’t good for my health,” Tjoland said of their frequent fast-food trips, having stopped at Burger King four times during four hours of travel.
Also not good for their health are some noxious odors in the studio during practice that have affected the band.
After their most recent performance at the amphitheater on campus was interrupted by campus police and given a curfew, the band hopes to have more like their first at the Front Porch on Oct. 23.
“Look for us at local bars,” said Spry, mentioning that more gigs may be in the works.
Color Collective also has a Facebook page with information and updates on the band.

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