A Ripple Conversation With Nehoda

When I was a kid, growing up in a house with Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, and Simon and Garfunkel, the first time I ever heard Kiss's "Detroit Rock City," it was a moment of musical epiphany. It was just so vicious, aggressive and mean. It changed the way I listened to music. I've had a few minor epiphanies since then, when you come across a band that just brings something new and revolutionary to your ears.

What have been your musical epiphany moments?

Patrick: It is funny you mentioned all the bands you had playing in your household, because it was very similar for me.  One of the first albums that made me realize I was listening to something I shouldn’t have been at 5 years old, was Appetite for Destruction.  But nothing was quite an epiphany until those open chords for “Smells Like Teen Spirit” began to play late one night in September of 1991.  I turned 10 the following week and the first thing I did with the $20.00 my grandma gave me was buy Nevermind.  That album and Siamese Dream changed my life.

Jeremy:  When I was about 11 or 12 years old I got the Beatles anthology for Christmas. It was the red one with two discs in it. Completely changed my world. Eleanor Rigby just got me and I would listen to it over and over. That song is so beautiful and haunting it just stuck......Hell, still does!

Grayson:  Black Hole Sun blew my 13yr old mind.

Talk to us about the song-writing process for you. What comes first, the idea? A riff? The lyrics? How does it all fall into place?

Patrick:  It really depends for me.  In the past when I was doing things as a solo artist with a revolving cast of bandmates it could be lyrics. Then I might sit down and build the progression around those lyrics, or I might come back to the lyrics with a progression or riff and see if it fits.  Essentially a feeling that had to come out in any form…so it does…whether that is a riff, song, or poetry for that matter.  If it is more of a prose form, I will typically edit it down to fit something. 

Over the past 18 months, we tend to come up with progressions, parts, and riffs together.  So I find myself writing melodies while listening to the voice memos of rehearsal in the car.  It has been a lot easier for me to write melodies this way as of late.  It allows it to be a rock and roll banger in a way that me writing with a guitar can hinder.   Sometimes I will be sitting with the guitar and the chords and lyrics just fall out in one fell swoop like “Lies” on the new album.  That song was complete in about 10 minutes.

Jeremy:  Patrick brings an idea and then I just start playing what comes to me then do it a thousand times, changing a little here and a little there till it solidifies as a part. Playing new songs live really pulls it together for me. I may have been playing something in rehearsal that I really like, then when we play it live I realize it doesn't work.

Grayson:  I generally start with a riff and build from there.

Who has influenced you the most?

Patrick:  As a musician I would have to say my Uncle Bob Jones.  When I was 11 he taught me how to play E, A, and B7.  Showed me a simple 12 bar blues rhythm and said “If you can hold that rhythm down in a few months when we see each other again, I will show you more.”.  That was the beginning of it all for me.  Well that combined with Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Jimi Hendrix, Blood Sugar Sex Magic, Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins, Bob Dylan, and Willie Nelson.

Jeremy:  That’s a hard one, I don't know who I could say influenced me most in music. I mean a lot of times I am influenced by other art or beauty or pain that translates into music. So to say I am influenced the most by one artist, I don't think I could say.

Grayson:  My dad, Ken Papa, an amazing guitar player, and my brother Austin Solomon, who is a phenomenal bass player.

Where do you look for continuing inspiration? New ideas, new motivation?

Patrick:  I try to find new music on spotify, band camp, and youtube.  Luckily there is so much that I have never heard before.  Last summer while driving around Southwest England for our tour we listened to Neil Young and Crazy Horse Zuma non stop.  It’s no wonder some folks have said the new album has that vibe.  For me that was a new album.  My folks never listened to music like that.  As far as the band goes…all three of us come from different musical backgrounds.  So the really heavy stuff like Elder, Yob, Baroness, and other bands 100% get sent over to me from Grayson.  I did some producing and engineering on an album in the early 2000’s for a band called Hookerfight.  T.J. Ferrari(the frontman) turned my ears on to Show, Sleep, Sunn O))), as well as doom in general.  I try to keep it new and not get stale with my music.

We are also pretty lucky that there is such a diverse scene in Nashville.  So we can find great new music just about any night of the week under normal circumstances.  But that will fit in the next answer better.

Jeremy:  Everywhere

Grayson:  My peers.

We're all a product of our environment. Tell us about the band's hometown and how that reflects in the music?

Patrick:  That is an interesting question, being that the three of us are from three different parts of the country.  I (Patrick) am from Santa Rosa and Sacramento mainly which is Northern California.  I then moved to Seattle and lived there for 3 years before moving to the greater Nashville area.  Grayson is from Philly, and Jeremy is from Memphis.  So we all bring our own vibe to the project.  As for the Bands hometown….Nashville is such a diverse musical playground consisting of some of the best musicians I have ever seen play.  The caliber of players, producers, engineers, recording studios, and venues blows my mind daily. There are so many bands doing such unique stuff that is constantly inspiring us and pushing us to do more.

Jeremy:  Nashville, there is a lot of music here, just not a lot of what we do. There is a thriving (albeit small) rock and artist music scene here. I think some of the more Americana sounding vocal lines that Patrick sings could be attributed to his time doing the singer songwriter circuit here in Nashville.

Grayson:  I’m not sure we’re really “Nashville” but there’s a lot of great music in this town that’s not country or western.

Where'd the band name come from?

Patrick:  The guys decided that we should use my last name as it is pretty unique and rare.  The beauty of it is in the double meaning.  Not only is it my last name…but it also means Mistake in Czech.  So we thought that was fitting as it was sort of an accident as to how we all met.  I was supposed to be playing a show with a couple other players.  Due to a death in the family the drummer had to bow out and the bassist followed suit.  At the show Grayson was playing bass in another band on the bill that night and Jeremy was fronting his band Kitchn that night.  After my set they both came up separately and asked if I wanted to jam at some point.  We did and the rest is history.  So a fortunate accident.  But an accident nonetheless.

Grayson:  Our fearless leader, Patrick Nehoda.

You have one chance, what movie are you going to write the soundtrack for?

Patrick:  Oh man….that is a tough one.  I would have to say that if Quentin Tarantino made a Spaghetti Western….that would be it.  I know the Hateful Eight had the Ennio Morricone Soundtrack and Django was a western….but I am talking Segio Leone style Tarantino Western.  That would be a dream score for me.  I was lucky enough to do some work on a couple short films while I was living in Sacramento.  I really enjoy scoring films.

Jeremy:  Willie Wonka and The Chocolate Factory

Grayson:  UHF

You now write for a music publication (The Ripple Effect?).  You're going to write a 1,000 word essay on one song. Which would it be and why?

Patrick:  Tom Petty “Honeybee”.  I would write about this one because it is genre crossing. It is a songwriters song, it is a rock and roller song, and it is a swinging heavy song as well.  Just find footage of them playing it on SNL with Dave Grohl on drums just after Kurt died.  That was a monster performance.  Plus I feel a lot of folks could benefit from listening to Wildflowers as a whole.

Jeremy: I’m dyslexic. I've never even read 1000 words so I don't think I would write 1000 words about anything. But if I had to pick I'd say "The Long and Winding Road"......feels right.

Grayson:  Dogs by Pink Floyd. Lyrically and musically dense. Plus it’s my favorite Pink Floyd song.

Come on, share with us a couple of your great, Spinal Tap, rock and roll moments?

Patrick:  When I was in 8th grade at Faith Lutheran School in Fair Oaks California, we were permitted to play a set.  It was myself on Guitar and vocals, Matthew Steinkrauss on guitar as well, and Bob Lovesee on drums.  We had a set list of Nirvana, Green Day, Weezer, and a song I wrote.  We didn’t make it past the second song.  I decided that we should play “Rape Me”.  The Mr. Evanson and Mrs. Patterson literally flipped the breaker mid song and shut us down.  They tried saying I idolized a devil worshipper as well as a man who killed himself.  I told them that Jesus forgave everyone.  Needless to say that didn’t go over well.

Jeremy:  Not sure, but I did have a guy try to fight me over my socks one time when I got off stage.

Grayson:  Played a gig opening for Dirty Diamond, Philly’s premier filthy Neil Diamond tribute act, and a busload of swingers showed up. Only time I’ve ever been flashed on stage.

Tell us about playing live and the live experience for you and for your fans?

Patrick:  It is my drug of choice.  Leaving it all on the stage and posing my heart out…there is nothing better than that feeling.  I miss it deeply.

Jeremy: It is the only thing that keeps me going. I love the energy of being on stage no matter how big or small it is. I think smaller crowds are harder to play for because I feel so exposed. Like they can hear or smell every mistake or insecurity. But I always try to play as if the show I'm playing right now is the greatest show of my life

Grayson:  I really miss seeing and playing shows. It’s been such a big part of my life for so long it’s hard being without it.

What makes a great song?

Patrick:  When it resonates in your soul.  I cannot explain how or why…but you know how it feels when it does.  The harmonic connection to your soul I guess.

Jeremy:  Who knows?

Grayson:  Depends on the listener.

Tell us about the first song you ever wrote?

Patrick:  Die In Black….It was garbage.  But The riff came to me in a dream when I was about 11.  Kurt Cobain was there and he said hey…try this.  I remember hearing it in my dream.  Been a while since I thought about that one.

Jeremy:  It was about my truck but everyone thought it was about weed.

Grayson:  I think it was called Outer Banks and it was terrible.

What was your first ever band, and what were they like?

Patrick:  My first real band was called Fermatta.  We were playing alternative music in Sacramento around 2000.  It only lasted about 5 months, but we had fun. 

Jeremy: Highschool, the band was Sifter we covered, Creep and praise and worship music.....yah it was a weird time.

Grayson:  We were called Inflatable Crustacean, named after a pool float, and we played our first show in a bookstore in Bridgeton, NJ. We ruled.

What piece of your music are particularly proud of?

Patrick:  I am truly proud of our new album.  We recorded it live, without any edits or overdubs(aside from a couple vocal doubles and one acoustic guitar line)  We wanted to capture a moment and thankfully we did right before the world shut down.

Jeremy:  Are you kidding me! Nehoda “But Anyways…” duhh

Grayson:  Our upcoming album.

Who today, writes great songs? Who just kicks your ass? Why?

Patrick:  Man there are a lot of folks who write great songs.  Margo Price, Sturgill Simpson, Radiohead, Russian Circles, Black Mountain, Sleep, Neil Young…

Who kicks my ass? Bob Dylan’s new album is out of this world.  Sleep live at Third Man Records Kicked my ass.  But nothing compares to Seeing Sunn O))) in the Caverns in Tennessee 4/20/19.  That made my goddamn clothes shake!  Last but not least….Ennio Morricone is the ultimate.  What a composer.  He could create a sweeping epic from two notes like The Man with a Harmonica Theme from Once Upon a Time In The West.  R.I.P.

Jeremy:  Dave Bazan, he just speaks to me.

Grayson:  Anderson .Paak, dude writes great songs and plays/sings his ass off.

Vinyl, CD, or digital? What's your format of choice?

Patrick:  Vinyl all day every day if there is a choice.

Jeremy:    Digital only because its easy

Grayson:  Vinyl

Whiskey or beer?  And defend your choice

Patrick:  Whiskey…preferably Bourbon or Scotch.  Man I am 6’7 330 lbs.  Beer takes too long and makes me feel too damn full!  Especially if I am singing...Then I stick to Gin and Tonics.

Jeremy:    Both....no defense necessary

Grayson:  Beer, because I can’t drink 10 whiskeys.

We, at the Ripple Effect, are constantly looking for new music. What's your hometown, and when we get there, what's the best record store to lose ourselves in?

Patrick:  Man….Grimey’s and The Groove for Nashville.  It used to be Dimple and Tower in Sacramento….but sadly they are both gone now. RIP.

Jeremy:  Memphis, Goner (if its still there)

Grayson:  I’m kind of a nomad, but the best record stores in Nashville to me are Grimey's and the Groove.

What's next for the band?

Patrick:  Our new Album But Anyways… comes out October 3rd.  So we are really doing everything we can to get that out there and heard.  We just released a single to vinyl titled “Dear Mr. President”.  o we are doing our damnedest to get these heard given that we cannot play anywhere.  If things had stayed the same, we would be getting ready right now to go do a month long tour of England and Europe again.  With that being said we are currently working on new songs for the next album and set once the world reopens.

Jeremy:  If the plague will ever go away....tour, tour, tour!!

Grayson:  We’ve got a full length album coming out later this year and we continue to work on new music and look forward to the day we can all get back on stage.

Any final comments or thoughts you'd like to share with our readers, the waveriders?

Patrick:  Whatever you do…keep supporting music….keep playing music…keep making art….do not give up….do not let them win….we will see you on the other side.

Jeremy:  Wear a mask so we can all go to and play live shows again sooner rather than later.