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Interview: Sons of Silver’s Pete Argyropoulos
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
My parents were both musicians. They were in a five-piece light-rock band that regularly played in the Los Angeles area. My mom was the lead singer, and my dad was the bass player. They played throughout my mom’s pregnancy with me. In fact, as family legend has it, they played a show at the Troubadour just days before I was born. They didn’t make it big, so to speak. But, clearly, their music-making left a big impression on me. Had it not been for that, I probably would’ve been a journalist writing about current events. I guess I kind of do that with my lyrics in our songs.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
Before my son was born in 2021- my son with Brina Kabler, our keyboardist- I would’ve said reading about history and current events as well as photography would’ve been my main interests outside of music. Both allowed me to step outside of being in my music head and harvest ideas that I could then bring back to songwriting, especially with regards to my lyrics.
But, quite frankly, I don’t give a fuck about anything else since the moment my son arrived. The only thing I want to do is spend time with him. Everything else is a very distant second, including music. It’s too soon to tell how that will influence my musical creativity. But, early signs are that it’s made me a lot more focused on specific goals and more efficient with my time.
How long has your band been around?
We started out about six years ago as a singer-songwriter project under the name, Pete RG. As we spent time on the road and in the studio, our workflow and our sound changed. We began to collaborate on songwriting, and we evolved into a rock ’n’ roll band. We re-christened ourselves, Sons Of Silver, a few years later.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We all live in the greater Los Angeles area. We’re all within reasonable driving distance to our studio.
That allows us to get together, in-person, on a regular and consistent basis. Nothing beats face-to-face collaboration for any style of music. In fact, I would go as far as to say that nothing beats face-to-face collaboration for any shared endeavor. To be honest, I think the digital connection is a grift. But I digress. For us, since our sound is largely derived from us sculpting songs in the same room at the same time, living nearby one another is essential.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
The name borrows from my Greek last name, Argyropoulos, which roughly translates to son of silver. My father, being the proud Greek man that he is, suggested it. We tested it with a few fans, and it got a double-thumbs up. So, it stuck. It’s nice to keep the name in the family.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
I think one of the more fun ones had more to do with where we were playing than the show, itself. It was the MTV Spring Break venue in Panama City Beach. The show was great. We played well. Good sound. Great crowd. But, staring out at all the swimming pools and tiki bars with the beach in the background made me laugh inside for most of the show. It was a bit of cheesy nostalgia.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
My favorite sized venues to play are theaters. Big enough to get some intense energy from the crowd. Small enough to have some intimacy. Of those, my fave is probably Roseland Theater in Portland. The word that best describes it off the top of my head is gritty.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
U2, Springsteen, the Stones and Radiohead.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band
and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Follow your instinct.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Follow your instinct… always.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Read ‘Em Their Rights is probably my personal favorite. The music’s pays homage to some rockers from the ‘sixties and I love singing those lyrics- very biting, very me.
Which songs are your favorite to play, and which get requested the most?
Rude Awakenings is one of my favorites to play and also one of our most requested. The groove’s a banger and it’s got as of musical ear candy. Like nearly all of our songs, we only had a chance to play it a few times before the pandemic. But, it was quickly one of the few most requested of our songs.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
Most of our songs are inspired from jams. We get together in the same room, one of us tosses out an idea and off we go. No plan, no intention. When we arrive at a moment where we’re all inspired at the same time, we know we’re on to something and we chase it down. Sometimes, we finish a song right then and there, within an hour or so. More likely, I take the ideas home, sift through them for the gems, fine tune those gems a bit and take them back to the band for some more refining as well as to finish them off.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
We don’t have any particular message we’re trying to get across. But, since all of our songs have a socio-political nature to the lyrics, as the lyricist, I try to write it a way that keeps people on their toes and challenges them to be curious.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
The only disagreements we’ve ever had are with regards to where to eat together when we’re on the road. Seriously. I don’t think we’ve ever had a musical disagreement. "But, as leader of the band, I think I’d solve any disagreement by labeling the opinions of those who disagree with me as misinformation.”
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
We’re planning to finally get back out on the road this spring in support of our latest single, Who’s Gonna Stop Us, and in support of our upcoming EP, Ordinary Sex Appeal.