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Band: A.D. Chandler and His Imaginary Band

Members: Chandler is a local singer/songwriter who performs solo and occasionally with other groups.

What got you started with music? When I was 15 or 16, I broke my leg and my dad gave me a guitar when I was lying around in bed for awhile. I learned fast so . . . I started joining bands. I got into writing my own songs instead of playing other people's stuff. In the year 2000, my dad died, so I started writing a lot. The beginning of last year is when I really started playing out, doing the solo A.D. Chandler thing. It was all original music. Eventually, you find people who want to hear new music and you build a following.

Is there an instrument you specialize in? I mainly sing and write (for guitar). I can play bass and a little keyboard. I really feel my strong point is my songwriting.

Describe your sound and style. I hate to say country and folk and blues, but that's what it is. A lot of my songs have a lot of dark humor to them.

Who are your musical influences? I would have to say a fellow by the name of Tom Waits and anywhere from David Byrne, the guy from Talking Heads, . . . to Bright Eyes. MySpace is very cool for finding a lot of interesting music. I've been buying a lot of people's music that you've never heard of. I grew up on The Rolling Stones. My family is basically immersed in music. My grandfather was a jazz head and collected thousands of CDs.

Are there any artists in the area that you like? There's been some good things going on. Waitin' on a Train is probably one of the better local bands around here that I'll check out when I can. Music around here can be hit or miss. They're not my style, but I really like C of Cortez. I don't want to put anything down. A lot of bands try to be safe and do what people want to hear. That's not me, and I hope that's what will set me apart from other people.

Is there a place you like to play in the area? I play every Monday at First Capital. I really enjoy that place because (the crowd) wants different music. The mentality around here is that people want to dance and sing to the jukebox or the Top 40. It's not a bad thing. I just don't want to do that.

So you're going out to the West Coast to record an album? As of now, the title of the album is . . . "Scars and the Stories Behind Them." It's going to be about nine to 11 songs. I'm working with two studios and an upright base player, so I have five days to cram a whole album in. My friend Al went out there and is doing really well for himself, and he came and saw me play (this past holiday season). We sat down and I played the songs for him, and we came up with a list (for the album). I got a gig out there, too. It's a pretty neat little place. It's going to be a busy schedule. I'm excited and I'm kind of nervous. I'm hoping it will be a good stepping stone for me.

- ERIN McCRACKEN, FLIPSIDE STAFF

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