“Tangerine Ovrglo” is a two piece Acoustic/Pop/ Indie project from Kalamazoo, Michigan. The band consists of James Sheets who is the lead vocalist and guitarist, and Kelly Christman who is backing vocals and bass. The band has just released an EP called “Clementine” that has reached over 100,000 plays on soundcloud, and plans to release their new EP titled “Harvest Moon” in April. Check out this interview below to get an in depth look into what Tangerine Ovrglo is all about.
Entertwine: How did you all get your start as a band, and what drew you to create an acoustic/indie sound?
Tangerine Ovrglo: I think it all started when I left my last band, “Unlikely Alliance” which was a local rock group I sang for. After the band parted ways I craved a new sound, something that would capture the people’s attention. I didn’t really know what that sound was until I heard my first City & Colour song called “Sleeping Sickness”, the song was so mellow yet at the same time had so much energy that made you want to dance around! I knew from that moment on I wanted to play acoustic music and make people happy with my sound. So I decided to create songs of my own, and once the writing process was done I worked a part time job to fund the project, and then I released an EP. Shortly after that, I met Kelly Christman (our bassist) at a local music hangout, we both had the same ideals when it came to music and the rest is history! J
ET: Who would you say are your main influences for your music, and why? Do you think that your music accurately reflects these influences?
TO: My main influences include City & Colour, Brett Dennen , Daughter, hints of Ray Lamontagne , Girl in a coma and NEEDTOBREATHE. The reason why these bands where so influential was because they all had some kind of ability I aspired to have when I was first learning to play the guitar and first starting to sing (of coarse some influences came later)., For example when I first began singing I was absolutely fascinated by Ray Lamontagne and the way he would make a song so unique and so different you could find no one else who sang just like he did. The “raspyness” and the way he could hit some of the highest notes without even breaking a sweat made me want to find a unique tone that was contoured and natural to me, and a somewhat of a gravelly tone felt right to me and I think that reflects in my music, especially in “Her Name is A” and “Drunken Nights”. In all I think Tangerine Ovrglo is a combination of all my influences and everything I’ve learned from my hero’s wrapped in to one burrito of musical knowledge I’ve gained over the past nine years of playing and being around music.
ET: Do you find being a two piece band more of an advantage or a challenge when writing and performing?
TO: I find it more of an advantage, because I need to have my space when I write. I need to be separated from the regular happenings of everyday life to truly unlock the imagination in my mind. Kelly, I believe is the same way. Once we have had our space, we come to each other with different ideas and we work them out amongst each other. All I need is just another likeminded person to share and understand my music and to help me create meaningful melodies and harmonies to make people happy. I feel I’m the same way with preforming, just Kelly and I on stage doesn’t sound like much but honestly I love how we can just walk into a venue, set up our things in a couple of minutes, and play and connect with people on a personal level.
ET: How has your hometown of Kalamazoo, Michigan either helped or hurt your musical presence in the indie scene?
TO: Well, it’s very hard to say whether or not you’re making yourself apparent in the scene because though you can have a great impact locally, nationally there are still various types of musical horizons that you can’t reach in the Midwest, without leaving and making yourself known to people outside of your comfort zone. But, my hometown has been very generous (along with great fans everywhere) in helping us making our band known. From helping us get shows when we were first starting out, to helping us reach one hundred thousand plays on Soundcloud by sharing us on various local websites throughout Kalamazoo.
ET: Any future plans to move out of Kalamazoo, Michigan to a thriving music scene like Los Angeles?
TO: It’s funny you mention that, because coming March 10th we will be moving to San Francisco to make ourselves more known and to establish a fan base in the Bay area and the West coast in general! J
ET: Tell us about your most recent release – your EP, “Clementine.” How would you describe this EP, and how will your April release, “Harvest Moon” differ?
TO: Well, “Clementine” was very “happy go lucky” in a sense. The EP starts with very down trodden heartbroken songs, but gradually the album ends with a resolve with the cliché getting over the girl and finding someone else. “Harvest Moon” is definitely going to be a much more mellow tone with a dash of happiness. These tracks are basically stories I’ve constructed throughout the past year from leaving home, to stories of judgment, to stories of caring for others when their down. All in all I have high hopes for this record and I sincerely hope people enjoy these tracks!
ET: Any big plans for 2014?
TO: We plan to tour the west coast very soon, and we soon hope to carry out and create a full LP as soon as we accumulate the funds!