Waterfall Wash is a four-piece fuzz pop act leading the charge of an indie rock scene in Nashville, Tennessee. This band feels like an old friend you’ve just met, but if that friend happens to be goofy and strange, and also manages to put on a killer live show that will have you humming their songs for days.
Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.
Chris is the cool person
Roddy handles the emails
Marshall drives the van
Ellice does literally everything else
For starters, what bands were you guys a part of prior to Waterfall Wash? How long has the band been around?
Ellice: Hmm. Pass?
Roddy: Ellice was in a ska band in high school… Waterfall Wash has been playing out since 2010. Before this band I played in numerous bands in Chattanooga (TN), including Chinasaur and Taxicab Racers.
Chris: I play in a few other bands currently – Low Mass and Splash Zone. And I used to play in a band called The Joy of Painting.
Marshall: I was in Frown Pow’r before I left Arkansas for Nashville. We made one really good album (in my opinion) that flew pretty far under the late-2000’s garage rock radar. Our drummer became a doctor and we all went different ways. I also played bass in Ted Drozdowski’s Scissormen before joining Wash.
What’s the origin of that name and have you changed the band’s name before?
Roddy: My family used to take a lot of vacations to Fall Creek Falls, a state park on the Cumberland Plateau. It’s a beautiful place and a tight spot for camping and biking!
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?
Roddy: I write about 99% of the lyrics, but the music has always been very collaborative. I think that’s one of the defining features of a “real” band. Otherwise, it’s just some dude’s solo project.
Our last EP, Become What You See, was a batch of songs about love and loss. Since then, I’ve tried to expound a bit more on human relationships – for example, our previous single “Chris” is about picking up where you left off with an old friend. A lot of the songs on our upcoming LP dive into the concept of mutability, which is the liability to change when life throws you a curveball. That was a constant theme throughout its making.
What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?
Chris: I only listen to podcasts.
Marshall: There’s no way I’d be able to list all the bands that influence the music we make. I don’t know all of them and it’s possible that none of us are able to point to any specific artists. I could say, yeah [band] influenced [song] on our album, but you’d feel super mislead by the time you heard what we made. To us that could mean we obsessed over how a tambourine sounds during one part of one song by [band]. So I won’t do that – we’ll leave it up to the listener to process that kind of stuff if they’re so inclined.
Was there a particular band/artist or concert that inspired you to start a band?
Marshall: Not really. I always sort of knew I wanted to make music in a collaborative setting. I got to see Modest Mouse and the Flaming Lips (among many other bands) in 2002, that inspired me to actually try the whole “band” thing a long time ago.
Roddy: It really is hard to pinpoint one singular incident. For me it was a multitude of factors: playing saxophone in my school’s marching and concert bands, watching music videos on MuchMusic, my mom singing songs about my stinky feet… I think it all added up to create this avalanche of influence.
Chris: My dad is in the music industry and I've lived in Nashville since I was 2 years old. I was pretty much screwed from the beginning.
Ellice: I grew up playing music with my brother. I played drums and he played bass and we went through dozens of terrible band names. So for me, being in a band is very familial. In college, I didn’t play any music and found myself missing it a lot. There’s a sense of comradery when you’re in a band that I’ve never felt anywhere else. So after college I knew what I wanted to do. And now I’m doing it.
What do you do to prepare for a show?
Roddy: Lots of water, sometimes bourbon.
Marshall: Drive us to the venue. Try not to get too anxious.
Ellice: I use my toothpick-sized arms to set up my instruments.
Chris: I pretend to stretch so I can pretend to not be sore in the morning.
What has been the biggest highlight of the band’s career so far?
Marshall: Unconfirmed: I think we made a dude cry one time?
Ellice: We’ve made two grown men cry! One was wearing a flower crown and had a cigar in his mouth. We were playing a good friend’s wedding and it was glorious.
If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
Marshall: Travel forward in time 4 years and tour with Waterfall Wash, for what I’m guessing would be excellent exposure.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Marshall: I’m good, thanks. Chris, do you have anything you’d like to add?
Chris: I'd actually like to subtract some things. I feel like I'm incriminating myself.