Any one that knows me, knows that I’m a fangirl at heart… and it’s always amplified when it comes to music. I’m sure if I really thought about it I could come up with plenty of reasons as to why this is, but I’m pretty sure it has something to do with the nature of music. Music has the capacity to speak to a countless number of people, yet is intensely personal in how each individual experiences it.
Maybe it’s this quality that makes it tough on some bands’ dynamic. Working collaboratively with others can bring about some amazingly beautiful creations, but it can also be very challenging, especially when it comes to something as personal and emotional as music. How many times have you heard of bands breaking up because of “irreconcilable differences” ? I use that term because it always feels like a bad divorce whenever this happens (Looking at you, The Civil Wars). The band doesn’t even have to completely dissolve, maybe they just switch out band members because of differences of ambition. Take the band Incubus (one of my all time favorite bands) for example: they replaced their original DJ and bassist due to personal differences.
Go ahead and add one of my favorite local bands, The Bright Light Social hour to that running list– I found out through Facebook that their original keyboardist, A.J. Vincent, had been replaced. The band posted a photo earlier this week with the caption: “Hittin’ the road again. Meet our new touring keyboardist Edward Braillif!” Of course, the only times when a band has a “touring” band member is when one of them is about to have a baby, or a band doesn’t have a member who plays that particular instrument. And TBLSH has, or at least had a keyboardist. Sure enough, the band released a statement the next day:
Many of you have asked about the details surrounding our keyboardist A.J. Vincent’s departure:
As we toured on our first record and started writing for the second it became clear that the time spent together brought the three of us much closer and deepened our communication and mutual understanding; unfortunately this didn’t hold true for our relationship with A.J. These tensions were harmful to the morale and functionality of the band as a team and parting ways proved to be the best possible option. Moving on without him has allowed us to create more freely, and the last few months have been the most fruitful, creative and energized we’ve experienced yet. All of this aside, we wish A.J. the best for his music to come.
Deepest love and eternal gratitude,
Curtis, Jack & Jo
Even though the band didn’t officially release a statement until after the fact– after all the fans frantically asked what happened– they still addressed the issue at hand. TBLSH was very transparent with their fans regarding what had happened and that was a very smart idea. A.J.’s departure is disappointing, he was quite a performer with insane vocal range and energy, and along with the rest of these guys made for an incredible live show. As I saw from stalking the comments, I’m not the only one who will be missing him… but The Bright Light Social Hour is a phenomenal band and I know they can only get better. If they keep up being honest and real with their fans, and keeping them in the know, they’ll definitely have some longevity. Besides, they’ve already opened for Aerosmith.
Here’s a video of them performing at Stubb’s the past September. I remember the first time I saw them ever was performing on campus, so seeing them playing the outside stage at Stubb’s was surreal and made me oh-so-proud.