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Introducing: exPorter

Alec Cavazos: Hello Indie lovers! My name is Alec Cavazos and I play guitars and sing in exPorter and I’m here with my brother Destin… he plays bass and sings the other songs in the band.


Black and white photo of three men. exPorter, as featured on Its Indie and we know it
exPorter

Where did you guys meet and how did you form this band?

Destin: Well as brothers I met Alec pretty much when he was born. (That's a fair point!) That was in Boston, MA in 2001. I don’t think he remembers though. Then we moved to Santa Barbara, CA a couple of years later and that’s where the band started.


When we were kids Alec and I played Rock Band on the Wii and one day we were rocking out and our dad came into the room. He said if we could be pretend rockstars, we could learn real instruments and next thing we knew I had a bass and Alec got a guitar. I think he was like 8 and I was 13.


Alec: Destin got the bass down pretty quick and started playing in bands but I actually hated the guitar. Well, not really the guitar, but practising all the time. I had more fun putting stickers on my guitar and looking cool. Then one day it all sort of clicked for me. So we had a bass and we had a guitar, and just needed drums. We had a family friend play with us at first and that was our first band. Then she left and our neighbour started playing and we then became “Porter”.


Destin: Then Henry (Kish) came on and we became exPorter and that’s when we really started taking things more seriously. More touring, recording our own stuff, really being a band and stepping out of those Rock Band pretend stuff.


Alec: We’re like Spinal Tap with drummers. No one has turned to dust on stage yet so that’s good. Right now Henry’s stuck in the bay area with work so we have another buddy Trevor Moropoulos playing drums with us.


What kind of music do you make or would like to make in the future?

Destin: exPorter at the core is early pop-punk, alt rock for sure. We all grew up listening to a lot of stuff and it all makes its way into the sound somehow. But if you took Blink and early Green Day and mushed them up that’s definitely how we started out. We had someone come up to us after a show in San Francisco and he had been around when Green Day started out up there and he told us we reminded him of that – that was pretty cool to hear something like that. And I know Trevor has talked about how much he likes playing those songs and other pop-punky things so I think it will always be a part of our vibe.


What do you enjoy the most about the process of making music together?

Alec: For me, I love every part of it. If it’s just me writing something on guitar or if it’s Destin and I doing demos in a room, I just like doing anything like that. When we get a song to where it’s time to record, I love being in the studio tweaking it and doing different takes. And of course, getting to do a song live is always fun.


Destin: Yeah, it’s different for me and it really depends on the day or what I’m feeling like actually. Sometimes I will get this idea and will just sit around working on that which is cool. Then other times that frustrates the hell out of me cause maybe something isn’t working. Alec loves being in the studio and would probably live there but I get pretty bored in there. I like to come in and do my parts and then I’m out of there. I do think though that we both really connect when the song starts to take shape. Usually, we write stuff on our own and then come together and share ideas. It starts to become the actual song pretty quickly and that’s always cool to see.


What are some of your favourite themes to explore through your music?

Destin: Ha ha….we joke all the time that all of our songs are unrequited love and a lot of them are, But that’s a pretty great theme to work off of if you ask me. But there’s really no formula or rule for us. I think we both pull ideas from so many different things, I wrote “Feel Good” about this couch I had in college. Alec’s written stuff when he’s out skateboarding. The theme can come from anything.


Alec: And then we take it and make it about a girl who breaks your heart or will never love you.


Who are some artists that you love or who you'd say have had a huge influence on your work?

Alec: There are way too many artists to list. Writing songs is hard and all of them should be appreciated in some way, and for us, a way of showing appreciation is having all kinds of stuff drive our songs. There is definitely pop punk like Blink and Green Day but then you have emo bands we all love, there’s 80’s 90’s alt rock in there cause that’s what our parents listen to and we heard it all in the car growing up. I mean I’m not gonna lie, Tom DeLonge is a HUGE influence on me and I love everything he does. But Destin will pull something from Fall Out Boy or Panic or girl powered rock like Blondie or Charly Bliss… It’s all in there somewhere for our songs.


Where can someone looking for your music, find it?

Destin: exPorter tunes are all over the interwebs – Spotify, Apple Music, the Amazon machine…. Anywhere you get your tunes from we should be there. If not, demand that they play it… and, if you do find it streaming somewhere, please stream the songs like 20,000 times each at least. You can even get old fashioned CDs right off our web store – you can check those at www.exporter.band/shop


What's your favourite part about touring/ doing live performances?

Alec: We LOVE playing live, we really do. I mean I like all of it, hitting up random towns, I like shopping at the local Guitar Center before load in or sound check. And getting on stage to play is awesome!


What kind of message would you like to give your fans, through your music?

Destin: I think the main thing we want fans to know is that we are so appreciative of them listening to our songs, or following us or checking us out at a show. It’s a humbling thing but we think they should know how much it means to us. But as far as a message we want to push through, it’s more about letting them take away anything they want from it. I think Alec and I both have an idea about what the song is about when we record it, but once it’s in the listener’s hands we want them to make it their own. I think that’s really what music should be about.


Alec: We had someone DM us recently wanting to know if she could get the lyrics to “Lusitania” and said it was her favourite song. I told her sure and asked where she heard it, and she said it was on this local radio station, they played it all the time and she wanted to learn it and sing the right words. That was a pretty cool moment for us, and whatever the song is about really didn’t matter… and I wrote the song and do know the vibe I wanted for it, but with something like this, it’s now kind of her song to play with.


Where do you guys see yourselves in the future, or what are your future plans for the band?

Alec: It’s a cliché answer but it’s the truth, we just want to keep growing as a band. We’re still trying to grow and do bigger things. Every year we get together and put down our goals for the band and try to make those happen. For this year it’s do bigger shows, maybe tour as an opener for someone, try to get on with a label. Whatever we can do to get better. I think we have done some cool things and have played some iconic venues, our songs have been on the radio, and it’s great. But we want to get better with everything we do.

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