October 4th, 2015 Last Updated on: January 20th, 2016
Up and coming musician Sage Bond recently tried out for “American Idol”. Her music is distinct and definitely reflects important issues in her family and life. She shares her unique tunes and style with us at Powwows.com!
Q) How do you describe your music to someone who hasn't heard it yet? What gives your music such a powerful sound?
A) Usually, I wouldn't know how to describe my music, because I couldn't figure it out for myself, since genres are so confusing nowadays. There's too many. But I'd say its Alternative acoustic Rock. Emphasize the ‘Rock' part because its such an inspiration to me, classic rock. I guess my voice is pretty powerful, people always say they dont expect that much power from a little body, 5'3″. And my guitar playing, I'm usually the only girl to get on stage at most shows with a guitar, dudes don't expect it…I don't think anyone expects it– haha.
Q) When did you first perform for an audience? What are some of your best, performing memories?
A) I couldn't really call it an audience, but the first time i sang in front of people was in my 8th grade class, I forget how the topic of singing came up, but the teacher let me take the front of the classroom. I was too nervous, so I faced the wall, then I started singing “Fallin” by Alicia Keys. The first time I sang in front of an ‘audience' was during karaoke at the coffee shop here in Tuba. The first time I sang in front of people while onstage was with a country band that discovered me at karaoke, Blue Canyon Band. It went bad, I was sick, my nose was stuffy, not sure if I was hitting the right notes because my ears were plugged too haha, but everyone was just happy to see me onstage. I wish I could remember every detail of every show I've played in the passed 7 years, they've all been filled with amazing experiences. Every show is great, even if it isn't, you know? But the best memory is when I played Guardians of the Flame event here in Tuba, and on my last song “A tout le Monde” by Megadeth (thrash metal band i grew up listening to, big inspiration) and most of the crowd (metalheads) also knew the song, and they started singing along. Just hearing them sing was awesome, I wish I could relive that moment.
Q) What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started performing? What are you glad you DIDN'T know?
A) I wish I had known how greedy people can be and mean! Other musicians wouldn't take me seriously because of my age, I was only 13, and yeah I was still learning, but I just wish I would've been able to tell when someone was taking advantage of me and my talent. I'm glad I DIDN'T know I could get paid to play music haha, since the first time I got paid was for the bad singing I did at my first show with the country band! 5 bucks! and I was surprised, and happy, very humble…because “it's not about the money.”
Q) You have awesome songs! What are some of them? How can we purchase your music?
A) Thank you! Right now, I have 13 original songs that I wrote over the years. It takes me awhile to write songs, I write what I know, not gonna rhyme everything haha. The EP I have for sale has the first 5 originals I wrote. Lie&Cheat, Day by Day, Save Me, Escape, World of Lies. Most of those songs are fueled from the anger i have towards my father. He left about 5 years ago, he was abusive, and an alcoholic.
Reverbnation is where you can hear my EP, and download it. And I sell the cds myself, in person, or I can mail it out.
Q)Did you always know you wanted to pursue music?
Somehow I've always known that I've wanted to do music. In 2nd grade, the teacher gave out an assignment, what do you want to be when you grow up? My answer was ‘I want to be in a band and play on a stage'. Plus I grew up in a musical family, my grandfather played the harmonica and loved Elvis. I would hear my mom sing a lot while I was growing up, she's into r&b, so I'd hear a lot of Whitney Houston, Donna Summers, powerhouse vocals. My dad played guitar, he was into metal, a lot of Megadeth, Testament, Kreator, Cannibal Corpse, and he'd make up his own riffs too, and I'd sit there and watch him and try to mimic whatever he was playing. He knew the local music scene kinda, when he was here, so some of the musicians that i collaborate with now knew him, or they jammed with him. He taught me a power chord on my little plastic starters electric guitar, and from there I'm pretty much self taught in metal…but when it came to Country, I was playing too fast for them and I didn't know any chords when I joined, so I'm glad the guitarist Pete Tallman was patient enough to teach me timing and chords during practice and live shows.
Q) Sounds like a good start!
A) Then, when I was high school, my construction teacher, Eric Tooke helped me perfect my timing and chords and a lot of cover songs that I didn't know I was capable of playing. By the time I was in an actual music class in my senior year, I was helping other students in my class with songwriting and playing guitar, with my teacher Chris Sutter. By then I probably knew over 90 cover songs. There were a lot of other helpful local musicians that took me under their wing throughout my years of performing. They knew a lot more about setting up and doing shows, because they've been doing music way longer than I have.
Q) Do your traditional ways or tribal culture influence your music?
A) I don't practice traditional ways, I was raised as a Christian and started going to church when I was 4. I do have knowledge of Navajo tradition, because it was taught in school from k-12. I also took some college classes on it. I don't speak the language much, but sometimes I introduce myself in Navajo at shows. I have yet to learn more about my Apache side.
Q) Are there issues from your life that appear in your music?
A) Domestic violence is something that is common among Native American families, but it's not a topic to bring up in conversation really, it makes people feel uncomfortable. I dont want to say that its a part of identity, but a lot of people experience it, and thats what my song ‘Day by Day' is about. Its a story about the day my dad left, and its a memory that just stays in my head, like its branded in there. So I had to write about it. Putting it into a song helped me recover from that day, in a healthy way, instead acting out, or falling into negativity. Most of my songs are about overcoming these ‘bad' situations I went through, I write from experience.
Q) Any other ideas or insight you want to share? Any favorite accomplishments?
A) I think just learning to play guitar, was a big accomplishment to me, and learning to sing AND play at the same time was an even bigger accomplishment. I don't really have any awards for doing music, but I got a couple certificates in high school for doing awesome in music class haha, and a ton of compliments over the years, so those kinda feel like awards.
Q) I'm sure they do! Congratulations on your recent audition for “American Idol!” Now that you've tried out, what else do you feel about your music right now?
A) I am extremely grateful for all the support I get from fans! And to people that show up and support local shows, local talent. Most of all to my family, for supporting me through everything. My mom loves playing ‘momager' haha and my grandma always tries to make sure I'm fed before I head out to a show haha. I'm thankful for everything that has happened over these years, good or bad, it made me who I am today. I can't believe my music could get me this far, sometimes I think maybe I could just get a normal job and do music on the side, but I'm not able to do that. I love music too much.
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