The members of indie rock crew The Districts all had plans to attend college at some point — but their passion for music led them in a different direction.
Instead, they started looking into labels for a record deal for their band, which formed in 2009 while the members were in high school, said guitarist and vocalist Rob Grote.
“It was definitely really exciting. We talked to a couple of labels. We had to decide which one was going to give us the most creative freedom and support what we want to do. It was kind of weird going into a different direction, but it was all what we wanted. It made sense and we’re happy,” Grote said.
In fall 2013, the band was offered a record deal from Mississippi record label Fat Possum Records, and signed with them that season, Grote said.
Now, Grote and the rest of his band, The Districts, are set to perform at The Basement Tuesday, with doors opening at 7 p.m.
Along with Grote, the band is a four-piece group made up of Mark Larson on guitar, Connor Jacobus on bass and Braden Lawrence with percussion.
Being in a band requires nurturing and compromise, Grote said.
“I’ve heard many people refer to a band as like a marriage because you have to always compromise a lot. Since there are four people involved, you’ve got to make sure everyone’s happy with everything here. You’ve got to try and communicate the best you can because four people, no matter how good of friends they are, you always run into roadblocks,” Grote said.
They also enjoy touring and meeting other people, Grote said. He describes it as a “cool feeling.”
“It’s just great to meet people of all different places and play music in all different towns. My favorite part is just being in a different place every night,” Grote said.
The members used to hate each others’ taste in music, Grote said, back when they started playing in Lititz, Pa. They were mostly a cover band back then.
“When we started, we were mostly playing cover songs of classic rock stuff. We slowly started to listen to the same of music and agreed on the same music,” Grote said.
When it comes to writing songs, there is not a set-in-stone process as to how the band composes its music, Grote said.
“There’s not a completely structuralized way of doing it. Sometimes the lyrics will come first. Sometimes the music will come first. Sometimes it will kind of be simultaneous but usually, it starts with the basic outline of the song that I’ve written myself and then we’ll kind of get together and mess around with it and figure out how to work dynamically and figure out the more technical parts,” Grote said.
Grote’s said his favorite part about performing live is “getting lost into the music a little bit” and having fun in his “own world.”
“Playing live is really easy to get lost in the music and to enter a separate place,” Grote said.
The band is currently recording a new album, Grote said.
“We’re recording right now (and we’re) just (trying to) make a kick a– of an album as we can,” Grote said.
Some students said they would be interested in seeing The Districts live.
“I would probably see the band in concert. They seem like the type of music that I would listen to, which is pretty laid back. I like indie rock music. It’s really melodic and more about lyrics. I’m big into words,” said Mary McManus, a third-year in English.
Tinisha Brown, a third-year in neuroscience, said she would see the band too.
“I would see them just because they’re different from any other band I’ve seen. I’m always trying to find new sounds,” Brown said.
Haley Duff, a second-year in zoology, said she enjoys indie music and would see The Districts live.
“They seem energetic and fun. I think they would be great live,” Duff said.
Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 on the day of the show. The Basement is located at 391 Neil Ave.