Fourth of July weekend, hot cars, beer, barbecue, and loud music — the Plaza-Midwood Pig Pickin’ had it all including Charlotte’s Temperance League on the stage. The band is the sort of straight-ahead rock & roll that I grew up on: two guitars, bass, drums, and a charismatic front man with a penchant for jumping off stage.
Guitarist Shawn Lynch was kind enough to answer my questions via e-mail.
Q: I’m going to take a wild guess that it’s not love of money that gets you up on stage. What drives you to the perform live music?
It’s always nice when the money happens, but in the world of original music it’s not a dependable motivator… I think it’s just the love of playing music. We’ve all been doing it for so long, it’s just what we do. It seems, for this band especially, that we’re in the die-hard holdouts, last-men-standing demographic… We’re just gonna play ’til we can’t play anymore or ’til it’s no fun anymore – which I don’t see happening anytime soon…
Q: When I started asking “What bands should I cover for CharlotteFive?”, people mentioned Temperance League over and over. What do you guys do to connect with people?
I don’t think we do anything out of the ordinary, really. I think that we have great songs, and we really put a lot of energy and heart into our shows… There’s a spontaneity when we play for sure -“Will Bruce will hang from the ceiling?” “Will Mark fall into DK’s drums and neither one drop the beat??” Maybe it’s because we play a kind of direct rock and roll music that doesn’t seem to be played much anymore… I dunno… I just hope people enjoy the band as much as we do..
Q: What’s next for Temperance League?
Well, we just recorded a song with our pals The Houstons for an upcoming split 7″ record, and then we’re gonna put out another all Temperance League 45 for the Fall… We’ve got some swell out-of-town dates coming up – we’re really jazzed about playing the Hopscotch festival in Raleigh in September too. I think the master plan is to keep playing and making records and making new fans as much as possible…
Q: From your perspective, what does the future of music in Charlotte look like? What are you excited about?
I think Charlotte’s always had a great amount of talented musicians that tend to get overlooked on a national level… I think that’s gonna change.. it has to, y’know? This city has gone thru some major changes the last few years, and it seems that there are a lot more outlets for creative expression of all sorts, and the music scene has definitely benefit from that.
Q: You’ve released several singles and an EP on Bandcamp — does that freedom to record and release in smaller doses affect the way you guys think about new music?
Not necessarily.. Bandcamp is a cool outlet/tool for any independent band, but I think the main goal is to make records (vinyl). We’re doing this all by ourselves at the moment, so it’s just working and saving for the next time to record and release… Now that the CD is on it’s way out (thankfully) it’s Vinyl for home or Downloads for on-the-go – we want anything we record to sound great and capture some live energy, and luckily we were able to do that on our 45 and on the other songs we have up at Bandcamp. All 5 were recorded live in 1 day and mixed the next with Mitch Easter at the Fidelitorium in Kernersville, NC.