BrooklynRocks Interview with Tyler Rann from Band of Thieves - August 30th ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Monday, October 01, 2007

BrooklynRocks Interview with Tyler Rann from Band of Thieves - August 30th

Tyler Rann - Band of ThievesLet me start by noting that I am a bit embarrassed how long it has taken me to get this transcribed. I’d also like to give a big thanks to Tyler for taking the time to talk with me. It has been a long time since I have met another Dag Nasty fan (or someone who had a clue who Peter Cortner is). I’d also like to thank Jon from Wilspro Management for setting up this interview.

Tyler is a great guy who is passionate about what he is doing with Band of Thieves and this passion really shows in the music.

The band is playing @ Lion’s Dan on October 19th as part of the CMJ Festival. Tickets are only $10 and Band of Thieves is scheduled to go on at 11:00PM.

Band of Thieves has a really cool upcoming gig. They are doing a 4 night cruise in Miami with Lynyrd Skynyrd in January. Tyler said that playing with Skynyrd will be the first time that when someone yells “Freebird”, they will actually get to play the song.

This is really getting to be too long a preamble before the interview but…I didn’t realize Tyler was the guitarist from Midtown. The interview starts with me gushing a bit about how great I thought Midtown was and that I didn’t realize that they had broken up.

BrooklynRocks: Can you tell me a bit about Band of Thieves, how long you have been together, what was the first show like and what you were doing prior to BoT?

Tyler: I was in Midtown for close to 10 years. The band broke up as it was beginning to ruin some friendships. I played in the band from ages 17-27 and, over that period of time, people grow and change – interests change.

Band of Thieves has been together for about 9-10 months. The band started with me writing tracks by myself and posting the tracks to It was a careful search to put the band together as I look at a band as a family so it is important that you can work well with the other band members.

The first show was a CMJ show at Bowery Ballroom, with Diamond Nights, and this was my first time as a lead singer.

As for the band, they have a great classic rock style. I went to high school with Leigh (bass) but lost touch with him until running into him at a party. Gitano (guitar) is from Argentina and he moved to the US to date a girl. Anthony (drums) has been doing session work and is a great drummer. Pete is a great musician as well.

Band of Thieves has 12 or 13 songs that we recorded ourselves. Everything was recorded live and I believe that if you can’t sing or play a song live on stage, you don’t want to record it.

BrooklynRocks: How are the shows going so far? What can people expect?

Tyler: It is really important to us that the songs sound good in a live setting. We play live a couple times a week and have been playing around the Boston, Philly, NY/NJ area.

I am getting too old for the kiddie stuff (sleeping in a van every night). I want a hotel room and I want to, a minimum, maintain the audience base that is coming to the shows.

BrooklynRocks: I asked Tyler his thoughts on a recent experience I had. I went to see a band (name intentionally omitted) at a record release show in the Village. The band is on a semi-major label (worldwide distribution) and yet drew only 30ish people (@ $6.00/head). The club took $150 for the door and sound and there were three bands that played that night.

Tyler: It is crazy to be entering the music world at this time. This is what I do – this is my purpose but, even with guarantees and merchandise sales, it is still hard. CD sales are down but music will always exist is some form.

The music industry has changed and this change seems driven by a mix of illegal downloading and bad product. The internet changed everything. There is now an almost unlimited amount of music available and the quality has lessened.

At this point, music is almost taken for granted. The New York Times recently ran an article on how Sweden gives grants to musicians (The Hives) so that they can focus on crafting their art.

BrooklynRocks: I asked Tyler about how he went from playing melodic punk (Midtown) to playing classic rock (Band of Thieves)

Tyler: With all the stuff I was listening to over the last few years, I kept coming back to classic rock and I really love the sound.

These days, rock and roll has become a marketing vehicle – there is nothing dangerous. Punk rock used to be about community and culture – danger, attitude and excitement. These days you can’t tell the difference between Fall Out Boy and Gym Class Heroes. They all look the same on the surface and all sound the same.

BrooklynRocks: As a wrap-up, I asked Tyler about what were some of the craziest shows that he played.

Tyler: Band of Thieves opened for Eric Church (country music) at Bottle & Cork in Dewey Beach at a time when Church had a couple hits on the country charts. The crowd was all wearing cowboy hats and here are some of the post-show comments – “Men shouldn’t were pants that tight” and “He [Tyler] has better legs than a lot of women”.

Midtown did a show with Mos Def and Common at Columbia but the crowd was into all the bands and the mix really seemed to work.
The band has released a three track EP and all the tracks are streaming on the band’s MySpace page. The EP has a great vibe – it sort of has that early Rod Stewart/Faces feel to the music. A demo version of a new track “Oh Oh Oh” was just added to the band’s MySpace page as well.

Earlier this month, the band posted that they have a number of new songs (see song list below) and will be posting new demos to their MySpace page as soon as the songs are mixed.

New Songs:
Watch Out
I Know
Truth Been Told
State of Grace
What You Want
Tired Eyes

In July, the band performed I Know, Woman and Watch Out on Good Morning NY and the clips is achieved on the MyFoxNY.Com site.

Band of Thieves' Website
Band of Thieves MySpace Page