by Anabel Dflux
– Senior Photojournalist —
Senior photojournalist Anabel DFlux caught up with Luke Sheafer of Me Like Bees, an Indie Rock band out of Joplin, Missouri. The two had a delightful phone chat about the band’s music, The Ides, and what fans can expect next from these indie mavericks!
Connect with the band here:
HRH: Hi, thank you so much for talking with me today! How are you?
Luke: I’m very good! I just got off of work actually, so that’s good!
HRH: For our readers who aren’t familiar with your music (YET), can you give me a quick run through of who you are?
Luke: We are Me Like Bees from Joplin, Missouri. We are, basically, an alternative rock band. We kind of sound like Modest Mouse- the indie rock thing. We’ve been at it for about five years!
HRH: That’s quite a bit of time!
Luke: Yeah a little bit! But we’ve been in our current form for about three years.
HRH: What pulled you towards the indie genre of music?
Luke: It was kind of what I was listening to, what all of us were listening to. I think our sound is kind of a combination of what we all have listened to and been influenced by.
HRH: Who are your biggest inspirations, and why?
Luke: I really like- actually he’s kind of a common influence from all of us- I really like Jack White. Especially when he was in The White Stripes. Something very raw and nasty about their music that I was really drawn to when I first started playing. I think what I was listening to in college is when I started playing music, so I connected with him.
HRH: I think both of their bands kind-of bring an ‘out of the box’ artsy-ness to their music as well.
Luke: Yeah! It’s thinking outside of the norm for sure, and we try to do that too.
HRH: What is your music philosophy, or is it just to be out-of-the-box and bring an honest nature to the songs?
Luke: Yeah, I think our philosophy is just to work hard at writing until we like it. Not necessarily try to tailor to for anybody else, but keep working at it. Don’t let something be ‘good enough’, keep working at a song until you really like it.
HRH: That kind of attracts like-minded individuals as well, because when they listen to the music, they can relate to it.
Luke: I would agree with that! I guess it’s a natural byproduct of that is that you do find people who like weird music- or, not ‘weird’ music even, but just, different than first chorus first chorus, that chorus, and stuff.
HRH: Who did the album art for The Ides?
Luke: Our bassist Nick Bynum did actually, he did all of the artwork inside. The picture is actually a real picture, it’s not a stock image or anything. Our original bass player’s aunt is the one in the middle of that picture, and it was a war protest during Vietnam. That sign that says “The Ides” now on our cover, actually said “Make Love Not War”. It was an anti-war parade that she was going to. It’s kind of an eerie photo and we really liked it. The first time we saw it, we thought “we should make that the album cover someday” and we did.
HRH: It’s very unique!
HRH: I love the artistic, honest, and down to earth nature of your music videos. Which video was the most fun to film, and why?
Luke: I really liked just filming our title track “The Ides” most because it was simple, but it was really fun. — I really like it because it’s just us playing a song, we’re not all together but, you know —. It was a really fun shoot too! It didn’t take very long, just a few hours but I think it came together very well.
HRH: Yes, it’s very put together! I like the little quirkiness that was in it as well, with the three dimensional overlays and whatnot. Your lyricism is positive, even though it tackles darker subjects. What made you want bring optimism and humor into your music?
Luke: Hmm…that’s kind of an odd question! I try to be positive, I write all of our words, because I think I have a pretty positive outlook on life. Even with the dark stuff, tragedy like that. For me personally, I’ve dealt with a lot of the stuff and I don’t think it should define us as far as our experience of people. Tragedy should be the benchmark of who we are, but something that we have to deal with in time. I try to be pretty honest with our lyrics, but I think the positivity is just me talking about the way I think of those subjects.
HRH: What has been your favorite show to play thus far, and why?
Luke: Oh man… we’ve played a lot of shows!
HRH: That’s good!
Luke: Haha I know! You mean, of all time? Like, ever?
HRH: Yes! Like ‘ever, ever’!
Luke: Ever, ever? Our favorite show we have ever played? Oh man… for me, I don’t know why it is, but there was this one show in Colorado Springs. It was a pretty small venue, probably only a few hundred people fit in, but it was just packed. The crowd was just insane! They were insane long before we ever got on stage- and there was just ruckus and it was great! We were playing with Never Shout Never and Man Overboard. That was just a great crowd!
HRH: We like great crowds! Do you have any upcoming tour plans? I saw a few dates on your website.
Luke: Yeah! We are talking to a couple of booking agents. We are kind of taking a minute before we start booking anything, getting our bearings again. We want to work with the right people so we are weighing our options as far as that goes. So that is where we are at. We have some festivals booked in Kansas City, Indiana, in Denver, just a few festivals. Right now, any other possibilities are hush-hush, we aren’t announcing anything yet. Just stay tuned on it!
HRH: What can fans expect next from you?!
Luke: More music, for sure! It has been almost two years since we’ve released our record. We’ve written a lot of music, we’ve recorded three songs with a producer named John Feldmann in LA pretty recently. So hopefully we will release that, but besides that (that’s already recorded), we are looking at recording a full length. Definitely more music, that’s where we want to head next!
HRH: I am sure more info will be announced soon! Thank you so much!