There is a lot of individual talent in the band SATELLITE. So much, in fact, that they’re so successful independently, one might wonder why it is they would bother to ‘give up’ their day jobs as thriving musicians and songwriters to navigate the slippery slope of being a new artist. It’s pretty clear that to make it in the music business, you not only need great songs and musicianship, but you have to have that something special, that passion, that never-back-down mojo. Collectively, SATELLITE has it all, in spades.
Coming out of Los Angeles, the four band members – lead singer and bassist Steven McMorran, guitarists Mitch Allan and Josh Dunahoo, and drummer/multi instrumentalist Justin Glasco – are in their nascent stages as a band. Playing together for the past year, SATELLITE got their start with Mitch inviting his friend Steven to a songwriter showcase he was hosting. Says Steven, “When I was done, you could hear a pin drop. I didn’t know what it meant, but I felt good about it.” Mitch suggested they work together, they pulled in Josh, an in-demand session guitarist once signed to Columbia Records, and then hired Justin to drum, recruiting him as a full time member shortly thereafter.
It’s interesting that with such unique individual success, SATELLITE is where they choose to make their home. Steven and Mitch, who are both with the same publishing company, had known each other socially for years. Each did quite well in their own right; Steven was signed to Epic early in his career, and then found his niche writing songs for such varied artists including Street Drum Corps, Melee, David Archuleta, Crosby Loggins and international superstar Celine Dion. As for Mitch, since he began writing and producing, he has been nominated for a Grammy, won an ASCAP "pop" award for the Bowling For Soup song "1985," written 4 top five singles, and was also the lead singer of the platinum selling rock band SR-71. And while he has written and produced songs for a who’s who of the music industry including Pink, Faith Hill, The Jonas Brothers, Daughtry, Joe Cocker, Simple Plan and more, he is emphatic: “I have sold over 15 million records, and worked with some of the biggest artist in almost every genre of music, but SATELLITE is what I am the most proud of.”
The result is the self-produced EP RING THE BELLS, with its outstanding single “Say The Words.” The anthemic show-stopper builds to an energetic crescendo that has the crowd on its feet at every show and is the benchmark for the whole of the EP. Instead of relying on volume for emotional release, the band explores texture and complex melodies, putting forth songs that express a wide range of emotions, while retaining their own untarnished clarity.
SATELLITE's distinct sound has been called a mash-up between "Kings of Leon + Snow Patrol" and, "Springsteen meets the UK” continues to gain momentum in Southern California, the band has quickly built a fan base through television and film placements, and media buzz surrounding their live shows - rare is the artist who sounds as good live as on your iPod, but SATELLITE swings it. The LA Examiner named them one of the 20 Bands to Watch in 2011 and they’ve been championed by Radar Online, Alternative Press and several influential blog-types. Touring around the west coast, and an appearance at SXSW, have kept the band busy; the second half of the year will find them finishing up their full-length album, a continuation of sorts to RING THE BELLS that will complete the album “thematically and sonically” according to Mitch.
With music that is both bracing and soaring, matched with lyrics that are vulnerable and raw, sung by Steven with an emotion that gets you right inside the song, SATELLITE is as close to a sure bet as this crazy business has ever seen. There’s no doubt they will be in the musical orbit for a long time to come.