Kristen May - Vocals, Guitar
Jason Douglas - Bass
Brian Little - Guitar
Drew Little - Drums
From their web site:
The band Veda was born in Kansas City, Missouri during the spring of 2004. The rock quartet started with Brian Little and Kristen May playing in a previous band together for about a year. With Kristen's unique powerful vocals and Brian's inventive ambient guitar riffs, Veda began. Soon came Jason Douglas on bass and Drew Little on drums and Veda was complete. The musical influences of the band collectively are the Joy Division, the Foo Fighters, A Perfect Circle, Bjork and Coldplay. Veda emerged on the scene playing with local bands in Missouri and Kansas as well as opening for mainstream touring acts bringing their music to a wide variety of audiences. In the summer of 2004, Veda collaborated with Ed Rose at Black Lodge to record their first six song e.p. Though this band is new to the scene, they win fans over with their live rock show. This dynamic show is what has caused quite a buzz about this young band. With mature lyrics, beautiful melodies, a tight rhythm section, and a strong work ethic, the future is looking bright for Veda.
This interview was conducted by telephone with Kristen May, Brian Little, and Jason Douglas of Veda,
EPMS: How did you come up with the name of the band?
Kristen May: Vedha means, 'sacred writings.' There is a spiritual quality, an organic quality, to our music, that we have in our lives... Also, there is a character in a movie, 'My Girl,' named Veda. Her character is moody, insightful, and dark, but has a positive nature behind her as well. She's young, and we're a young band.
EPMS: How long have you been together?
Brian Little: Just over a year. We started...
Kristen May: March 2004.
EPMS: How long have you been touring?
Kristen May: Since January of this year.
EPMS: Did I read that you have a tour drummer?
Kristen May: Yes, it is true. Our drummer is seventeen, he's the guitar player's little brother, so we have a tour drummer. Hopefully, he (the tour drummer)'ll be with us as soon as possible. His name is Jason Tradue.
Brian Little: He played for Dead Poetic. We've known him for a while.
Kristen May: He's a class act.
Brian Little: My brother is in Europe for a high school thing.
EPMS: Your brother's going to high school in Europe?
Brian Little: No, he's doing a high school function over there. He'd planned this a while ago. We didn't know if we'd be touring this time of year. He's bummed out about it; right now he's in Italy.
EPMS: He's still going to be in high school this coming year?
Brian Little: This coming year, he'll be a senior.
EPMS: Didn't you begin touring kind of quickly? You hadn't been together very long.
Kristen May: Maybe. The circumstances were that Brian and I were in a band for one year before, and we had an urgency to get going because we had some great studio time lined up. We showed our manager that we wanted to be on the road a lot. Anyone can be on the road.
Brian Little: Red Authentic was the band Kristen and I were in. It was Kristen and I and her two brothers, Rob and Patrick. We had been together a year. The sound was similar to Veda, but loosely structured.
Kristen May: It was the first rock band I'd been in. Brian's style started to change. We were coming into our own. We felt we knew more where we wanted to go musically. The different bass and drummer we started Veda with became our backbone, and made us sound tight and refined, not abstract.
Brian Little: They gave us what we were lacking.
EPMS: Does the fact that you've started touring so soon have to do with being in the Kansas City market? I.e., maybe if you were in LA or some place like that, you'd have more places to play.
Kristen May: I can see what you're talking about, as far as LA bands. In LA, there are a lot clubs where you can be seen by people from music labels. In Kansas, it's a smaller market. We're not looking for a record deal. I see how in Chicago or LA you can stay, and play for bigwigs.
EPMS: What are your ages?
Kristen May: I'll be twenty-three in September. Jason is twenty-three, our tour drummer is twenty-three.
Brian Little: My brother is seventeen. He's the little guy.
EPMS: Have you ever been to El Paso?
Brian Little: No, we've never been to Texas. We've gone to Arizona, but we haven't been to either New Mexico or Texas. We're looking forward to it.
Jason Douglas: Yeah, actually I hear a lot of cool stuff about Texas.
Kristen May: We saw the flyer for our show.
Brian Little: I know Kansas City people from El Paso. I'm excited to go through Texas. Our five dates in Texas will be great!
Kristen May: Jason has toured Texas before with other bands
EPMS: There are six songs on your EP, This Broken City?
Brian Little: Correct.
Kristen May: The touring EP is limited to five. Our full-length has thirteen songs.
EPMS: When will the full-length CD be out?
Kristen May: July 26, but since we're not tied to a label, we just got them, so we're selling them at our shows.
Brian Little: Second Nature has given us the OK to show people our stuff; it might be a while before we come back this way.
EPMS: What is Second Nature?
Kristen May: That's the label from Kansas City putting out our record, but we still have the rights. It's more like a partnership.
Brian Little: Dan, who runs it, is a great guy. We've known him a while. We have a licensing deal with them.
Kristen May: They help with money for studio time and promotional costs.
EPMS: I understand you're up for a Pitch Awards in your home town. How is that coming, and what is it, exactly?
Brian Little: Good. Pitch is a local weekly in Kansas City. All Kansas City artists, they have an awards show. we're definitely honored to be nominated. I think the awards are given out in August. Then we'll find out. Jason, in another band, was nominated.
EPMS: In your bio, there is mention of Brian's 'inventive ambient guitar riffs.' What does that mean?
Brian Little: By ambient, I use lot of delay to space things out, to get an atmospheric feel. I think, by inventive, I take from a lot of players and styles.
Kristen May: He has his own style. He brings his own style.
EPMS: Give me three or four guitar players that influence you, Brian:
Brian Little: As far as rock, Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters), as far as atmospheric, Cave In, Ken Andrews from Failure, Johnny Greenwood from Radiohead. People say, "You sound like Johnny Greenwood." I listen to a lot of classic rock. Joe Walsh with the Eagles, Zep, Jimmy Page, Hendrix. Older rock, my parents' music.
EPMS: Okay, thanks for your time.
Kristen May: Thanks.
Brian Little: Thanks for having the interview. We'd love to meet you.
EPMS: See you at Lucky Devils!
- Charles Hurley
Veda will be at Lucky Devils with Closure for Emily and Mano Sol on Thursday, June 23, 2005.