Monday, June 20, 2011

Band Alert! Band Alert!

The Beatles, Nirvana, NOFX, and Green Day are all male bands that have started and bloomed in the subgenres of the rock world.  Whether for the purpose of fame, notoriety, or just for the music, they all have made hits and gained popularity with album after album making them celebrities. Although they are well-known names now, there was a point in time where they, like many others today, were struggling to get their names out there. Some have described the journey in music stardom not being an easy feat but still worthwhile.
And now with the music business booming with artists, one can even say that being an artist one has to have a talent, a name, and a dedication. In the case of Nova, a name that is now seen in venues like the Moonlight Bar and Webster Hall, that is not the problem. In an interview with Rockinglicious, both Ralgy Cepeda (vocals & bass guitar) and Alex (electric guitar) described their experiences being in Nova.
According to Salazar, the lead guitar of Nova, the band started in the fall of junior year of high school. The name back then was Running on Empty and they had 6 members already willing to put down music time. As time passed by, the band started “shedding layers and layers of people” and soon enough the band ended but on a good note.         
Ralgy Cepeda and Alex Salazar
After Running on Empty ended, Nova was born with band members Alex Salazar, Ernesto Baez III, and Ralgy Cepeda. And since then Nova has gained quite a fan base. 
When asked how the band members came up with a name like Nova, Alex answered, “I saw a supernova in my dream. It destroyed the galaxy. The next day I came up to Ralgy and asked him ‘what do you think of Nova?’ 
Of course some things have changed and other things have stayed the same with Nova’s members. At 14, both Cepeda and Salazar thought about different things than music: “I didn’t think about the world as a whole or about universal politics. I guess you can say I was more centered on myself and my friends,” Cepeda shared.
However for Nova, being young and in a band is not easy. “It wasn’t until we were 18 that we had access to venues. Now, venues don’t want to pay anymore. We don’t have money. So now I have to work for Starbucks eight hours a day,” says Salazar. Then there is band rehearsal to take care of as Ralgy notes in the difficulty of meeting up: “We don’t get to see each other every day. A lot of times Alex is in school and on the days that he is not in school I still work [on music].”
But for these two band mates, music is life. When asked what they do when they aren’t playing music, Cepeda answers “Our music reflects our life so metaphorically speaking when we are not playing music, we are playing music. When we talk to each other or look out the window, it serves as an inspiration. We don’t live outside the [band] lifestyle.” For Salazar, music changed his life a little more than expected: “My complete lifestyle was changing. I noticed my complete social life crumbled because I played music.”
Ernesto Baez III on drums
Despite it all, music has brought them many friendships and conversations with their fans. Of course, Rockinglicious was curious to ask what new goals Nova had in mind whether hitting the list of featured artists in the famous Warped Tour or taking part in the Loolapalooza music festival. Surprisingly, for Salazar and Cepeda that goal is not really the main deal. Salazar says, “At the end of the day it’s not about making the dollars but the music. The biggest goal I could say for Nova would be progression. Self- development is very important for us. Right now we are working on writing a five part song with a prelude, a symphonic poem (no lyrical parts), and a lyrical part. It would be mostly influenced by classical music.”
Through hearing the voices of both Alex Salazar and Ralgy Cepeda on what it’s like to be in a band such as Nova, it can be ascertained that starting your own band is like growing a tree: there has to be dedication, care, and a love for music along with the equipment to keep it going. If you want to check out this band and even attend one of their shows, check their gigmaven profile:    

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