Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Trace Repeat is comprised of 8 members; Wesley Woo on the lead vocals, guitar and bass duties, Zach Hing (answering the questions), also on the lead vocals, guitar and bass duties, Ben Peterson on drums, Daniel Wilson on Tenor and Baritone Saxophones, David Kaiser-Jones on Trombone, Froilan Vicente on Tenor Saxophone, Khrizia Kamille on vocals and hand percussion, and most recently, Noah Foley-Beining on synths and keys.
For starters, what bands were you guys a part of prior to Trace Repeat? How long has the band been around? What’s the origin of that name and have you changed the band’s name before?
We are officially a funky package that keeps pushing, and I’m happy to say we’ve been around for just over 2 years now. We formed back in 2015, when Wesley Woo was actively playing in his own band, The Wesley Woo Band, and when I was studying in college as well as focusing on my own solo singer-songwriter material. Wesley and I met while pursuing common interests, and the name ‘Trace Repeat’ has always been the name we’ve performed under. Different people will tell you various accounts of how we got our name, but the truth is, I sent Wesley on Facebook a list of random phrases while we were getting started and one of the phrases were: ‘Trace and Repeat’, he did the Sean Parker Facebook thing and shortened it. ‘How about just Trace Repeat?’ And there it stuck. We were very close to being called ‘Muddy Chateau’, as that was our 2nd choice.
Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs and do you think these topics will change over time?
Wesley and I write the ‘songs’, however, it is important to note that every member of Trace Repeat actively contributes to the development of the finished product. The recordings are the result of a close and personal collaboration of all of us, and we like to sing about getting groovy, getting funky, and having a blast doing that. Really, we just write whatever we feel like writing about, going off the mood and the vibe of where the song wants to go. Who knows? Maybe we’ll get serious one day and sing about growing up and wanting to leave our hometowns.
What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
As of right now, we are super into a band called Vulfpeck. Collectively as a whole we appropriate a lot of their performance antics and how they function together as an ensemble. They have certainly had a profound impact on us, and we appreciate them for that! But as a whole, Wesley, myself, and just about everyone in the band finds ourselves always revisiting the greats. Prince, James Brown, and all the retro and flashy Motown Acts of the 60s. There’s a reason we jam out on Marvin Gaye during the conclusion of our sets.
Was there a particular band/artist or concert that inspired you to start a band?
The band was born out of a desire to make music that would pop. Music that would give people a good feeling in their bodies and have them get up and move. Our inspiration came from within, and we’ve all love playing music. That’s the fuel to our fire, and as mentioned above, our soulful forefathers had a lot to do with that as well.
What do you do to prepare for a show? Any flexing, exercises, etc…
We engage in a ritual where we put our hands together and yell something completely random. Most of the time it ends up being a word that gets our blood pumping and has us fired up before we get funky with our instruments. Our popular word of choice has been ‘Mastodon’, but sometimes it’s more of a shout, something more barbaric in nature. But in all seriousness we do get together and warm up, and talk about what our intention for the performance is, touching on some pinpoints such as eye contact, dynamics, intonation, etc.
What has been the biggest highlight of the band’s career so far?
From my perspective, I’d say our successful Indiegogo campaign we launched in the beginning of the year, but I’m also obliged to say that by the time this is printed, our album release. Everything we have worked on has been a contributing factor to September 21st, 2017, the night we drop ‘The Oaktown Sound’. I’m truly proud of the record we’ve created together as a result of so much work and time, and the fact that our songs, our material have become realized in such a way is the biggest highlight for me personally.
If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
KISS. I know that sounds random, but I just need to confirm the rumors about Gene Simmons backstage being true. And who wouldn’t want to tour with KISS? Fire breathing, boots, rock n roll all night, party everyday…. Yea, sounds about right.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
We’re looking forward to our next release. Tons of new songs and videos coming your way. Stay tuned and stay funky everyone. I’ll say this, it doesn’t feel like 2ish years, but more like 10 with the amount of time we spend together, but I guess that’s how it works when you’re co-mingled. Thanks for the opportunity!