In the winter of 2005, upon the frozen ground and shrill wind that only Western New York can provide– a sound was born. It was forged amongst three musician/best friends, and bonded over one commonality: love for music and creating. Robert Stevens, James Cilano, and Mike Wilkinson huddled around heaters in childhood homes to catch the musical spark which fueled a primal sound to grow into a slew of anthemic love notes. It’s a description not easily applied to punk, but this particular blend, flavored with a bit o’ G N’ R, and 80’s Arena Rock thrown in for good measure, fits it perfectly. Punk not unpolished but still raw. And fast. Cinematic at times, even. With the addition of frontman Jon LaLopa, those first sparks exploded into the driving, melodic, fast-paced roar known as Rochester, New York band, Scholar.
“When we get together, not only are we attracted to each other (platonically speaking, of course), but we create this music we’re really proud of. It binds us together above and beyond friendship– because we know the process wouldn’t be its best without every component. Scholar is something we’re all proud of because of our history together.” Says guitarist/songwriter James Cilano.
Having garnered heavy local/regional, and international radio/podcast play, praise from all walks of webzines, local/regional outlets and periodicals, and blogs, Scholar’s hard work is starting to pay off. The band was featured on Absolute Punk’s Unsigned Spotlight and Absolute 100 Bands to Know 2013, after years of sharing stages with countless established, and up-and-coming acts: Such Gold, Twin Atlantic, Four Year Strong, Mixtapes, The Story So Far, Pentimento, and Banquets just to name a few. With their music alone, Scholar has cultivated audiences from around the world and with a tour-heavy mindset, they will be on the road indefinitely, getting their message in front of any ears that will listen.
“I feel like every one in the band is the perfect counter-part to the way I’ve always written songs. We’re ready to take our music around the world.” – Jon LaLopa, Scholar vocalist/guitarist.
With the release of Scholar’s debut full length, “Choose Adventure”, produced by Brian Moore (Such Gold, Mikaela Davis) and the band, they’ll have every reason to utilize the momentum.
“We’ll be making records for the rest of our lives, even when we’re pooping our pants again.” – Robert Stevens, bassist.
Scholar’s music speaks for itself, all someone has to do is listen.