Although founded less than a year ago, Rich People Food has been making a splash on the local music scene in Boston. Founded by UMB students Drew Tambling and Steven Weston, the band now includes Berklee students Lisa Hickox on keyboard and PJ Hohl on drums. With Tambling on synth/keyboard/main vocals and Weston on guitar, Rich People Food embodies an indie-pop-rock-dance feel.
They have played Boston venues such as Cantab Lounge, All Asia, The Greatest Bar and The Middle East, as well as Tammany Hall in New York City. They are currently working on a four-song EP set for release in early December, with plans to perform more shows upon its completion.
Says Weston, "We've been mostly working on our EP right now in the studio. Once we get that done, we'll be doing a lot more shows and stuff like that." All group members participate in the writing process and they have a little studio next to Fenway. "We spend a lot [of time in the studio]. It started in the beginning of the summer. It's been a long process. Most of our music is working with synths and guitars. Guitar is more of an organic instrument and synth is not. You have to tune it after every single thing. It's a just long process."
While Tambling has been in bands since he was fifteen and Weston had mostly been involved in solo endeavors, the two met in January 2011 and quickly recognized their equally strong passions for making music. Rich People Food was conceived in March 2011. They cite influences from all over the musical spectrum. Tambling noted, "I like listening to metal. I like listening to crooner music like Frank Sinatra. I like listening to, like, everything, really. The inspiration for our band is not just one single genre. We gather influence from everywhere... From jazz, metal, pop, ‘80s, classic influences, a mix of everything. The Berklee kids we're in the band with obviously go to Berklee, and it's very traditional. Lisa was into jazz before she got into pop, so she has a lot of that working for her when she writes songs."
Weston is a business major, and Tambling will graduate this semester with political science and criminal justice degrees. Weston is also a member of the UMB Men's Hockey Team, and Tambling is a former member of the baseball team. However, with no plans to stop making music when done with school, the two musicians realize the risks associated with the music business.
Tambling notes, "You don't want to drop your whole life to do music unless something major is happening. The music business is a crapshoot. The chance that you know you can retire off money that you make in music is slim. It's risky business. I learned a lot about it...I'm passionate as fuck about music. That's why I continue to do it because I love making music and performing, and I like wearing tight pants, they make my junk look huge. But you just got to be smart about entering the music business. You can throw your life into it and before you know it you're 35, you have no education to fall back on, and your band sucks."
Rich People Food's EP will be released online and copies should be available at shows following its release. Check out their Facebook page www.facebook.com/richpeoplefood which includes demos and links to band pages. Upcoming shows include Friday, Dec. 9, 10:00 p.m. at The All Asia in Cambridge, Saturday, Dec.17, 5:00 p.m. at The All Asia, and Sunday, December 18, 1:00 p.m. at The Middle East (upstairs) in Cambridge, playing with Molly Moore and The Fates. Says Weston, their shows are "very dance-y. It's fun. It's a good time!" so don't miss out!