Updated: Jul 15
Meet Los Angeles alternative rock band Satin!
Q. Tell us a bit about Satin!
We’re an alternative rock band out of Los Angeles, California. The group consists of myself, singer/guitarist Robert Cross, David Bucci on guitar, Scott Wintermute on bass and Tim Frantz on drums.
Though we have a very alternative rock sound, we also draw influences from classic rock (The Who, Fleetwood Mac, Led Zeppelin), prog rock (Pink Floyd, Genesis) and metal (Metallica, Ratt, Judas Priest).
Q. How did you get into creating music? What’s your journey so far?
As a kid I would create my own melodies and sing words to them, writing my own little songs to entertain myself, but it wasn’t until my uncle gave me my first guitar when I was about 13 years old that I started learning how to play music in any formal sense.
I had been in a few short lived bands in high school. I met Scott around that time when we were in a band called Twilight. Even though that band fell apart Scott and I kept in touch, so when I Satin with Dave I called up Scott and thankfully he was interested in contributing.
Q.How has been going with your album ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’?
Drop Dead Gorgeous took a long time to complete as we had a lot of setbacks along the way, both technical and personal, but we managed to persevere through those challenges. The album was released independently on all platforms on April 12, 2019 and since then we’ve all been hard to build and grow our fanbase, both locally and online.
Drop Dead Gorgeous is an album about unrequited love and was very much written to be a rock record. No keyboards or synthesizers were used on the album, focusing almost strictly on guitars, guitars, guitars, with the only exception being a mandolin solo played by Tim on “Lavishly Lavender”.
Moving forward we’ll include other instruments and arrangements in our music, but for Drop Dead Gorgeous we wanted to keep the arrangements relatively simple and stick to the basic rock format of guitars/vocals/bass/drums.
Q.What kind of things inspire you to write songs?
Lyrically I delve deep into my own personal experiences and emotions when I write, so my lyrics are very personal by nature. I feel it’s important to be honest with my lyrics, so I don’t hold back or censor myself even if I find some of the topics I write about to be too revealing about myself.
I build songs from little melodies or guitar riffs that I come up with and then I’ll match them to a song title to begin constructing a word back based on whatever angle I feel is appropriate to the music I’ve written. That’s how songs like “Magnolia” and “Piece by Piece” were written.
Q. Which artists did you grow up listening to and if you could make a record with any other artist, who would you choose?
I grew up listening to a lot of classic rock. Groups like The Who, Fleetwood Mac, Kiss and of course The Beatles, before branching out and finding more alternative rock like Oasis, Suede, Third Eye Blind and Vertical Horizon. When I was in high school I was in a band of metal-heads who introduced me to harder-edged groups like Metallica, Megadeth and Judas Priest.
I would love to work with Kevin Cadogan from Third Eye Blind. He’s always been my favorite guitarist. I’ve always found his approach and technique to be very distinctive and I instantly connected with his music when I first heard it at an early age, so I would love to be able to work directly with him to absorb his approach and see how he goes about his creative process when writing and recording.
Part of his style is that he incorporates a lot of alternative tunings in his compositions, while that is something that can be a bit of a hassle, it does open up the instrument to new sounds and fingerings that aren’t necessarily possible using standing tuning. For example the acoustic guitars on our song “Fall to Pieces” use the same guitar tuning as Third Eye Blind’s song “Wounded” from their album Blue, a song that Cadogan composed the music to.
Q. If you were to make a playlist of your top 10 favourite songs, what would be on it?
I always find seemingly simple things like this challenging as my top 10 list can change from one day to the next, but here’s the list I’d make right now:
1. “Disturbia” - Rihanna
2. “Blinding Lights” - The Weeknd
3. “Written in the Stars” - Vertical Horizon
4. “Never the Heroes” - Judas Priest
5. “Hysteria” - Def Leppard
6. “Undisclosed Desires” - Muse
7. “Graduate” - Third Eye Blind
8. “One” - VHS Collection
9. “Enjoy the Silence” - Depeche Mode
10. “Europe is Our Playground” - Suede
Q. Things are really uncertain in music due to Covid, what are you hoping is coming up for you next?
2020 has been a challenging year worldwide. The coronavirus threat has put a stop to public gatherings and concerts in many places for the foreseeable future. In fact, as I do this interview it’s been announced that California Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered bars closed in seven California counties, including L.A., due to corornavirus spread, making going out and playing live locally an impossibility for the time being.
Instead of being victims of circumstance we’ve worked to spin a negative into a positive by starting work on our follow-up to Drop Dead Gorgeous called Origami Heart.
Writing for OH is almost complete; I just have to finish to lyrics to a few songs. We’ve done a good bit of recording in a short period of time. Dave just recently tracked the lead guitar part to the title track, and as soon as it’s possible we’ll book some proper studio time so that Tim can track some live, acoustic drums and we can finish up on the vocals.
Q. If you could pass on a bit of advice you have picked up along the way, to other musicians, what would that be?
I’d advise musicians to not be too precious or royal with ideas and to be open to new experiences. Take advantage of opportunities whenever they should become available, whether it’s a chance to jam and network with someone new or to learn a new instrument or role, every experience can help build your skill set for the future.
Everyone should learn and know their limitations, but also challenge yourself as much as possible to grow and become better.
Is there anything else you want everyone to know about you and your music?
I’m very passionate about songwriting and about Satin’s music. I appreciate all the support we’ve had along the way and look forward to building the Satin catalog beyond Drop Dead Gorgeous moving forward.
One of Satin's playlist picks!