AN INTERVIEW WITH BEX
Embodying all that is dreamy, BEX is comprised of Rebecca Vines on guitar and vocals, William Isaacson on bass and background vocals, and Adam Freshcorn on drums. I met up with them at The Mothlight on Monday, March 19th as they opened for Shame and Snail Mail. As we chatted under the soft, warm light of a lamp in the back room of the venue, I felt right at home. Their kindness shone through in the most genuine way possible.
BEX’s most recent release, “Cosmo,” is a well composed, well recorded, and, overall, well executed song. The seemingly indie rock single begins with a powerful gust of balanced vocals, bass, guitar, and drums, and ends with a neo-psychedelic, guitar-driven tone. It’s beautiful, and I’m excited for what is yet to come for the three musicians. Rebecca, Will, and Adam know just how to cutely yet exactly express the twists and turns of everyday life.
WHO IS BEX?
Rebecca: I’m Rebecca Vines, and I do guitar and vocals.
Will: I’m Will Isaacson. I play bass and I harmonize!
R: Angel number 2.
Adam: I’m Adam Freshcorn, and I play drums!
R: --and he likes corn. [He] also records everything for us.
TELL US ABOUT THE BIRTH OF THE BAND!
R: I was writing a lot of songs by myself for a long time. It was a solo project. Then, Will and Adam came along, and they were like “we’re gonna make you sound a million times better!”
Will: We didn’t say that, for the record.
Rebecca: but, they did [make the sound better]. I was playing solo, but I wasn’t playing as much. Then, we started playing together in late 2017.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE SINGLE YOU’VE RELEASED SO FAR? WHY?
R: We just released one today, actually! It’s going to be on an EP that we haven’t finished yet, but we have the leading song for it! It’s called “Cosmo.” It’s my favorite. We haven’t really released any full-band [singles] before. [Almost] everything I have on bandcamp is just solo stuff I’ve done and recorded in my bedroom. Adam helped me record one [solo song].
SO “COSMO” WAS THE FIRST FULL BAND SINGLE!
R: Yeah, we just finished it last night, and just put it up!
A: I like “Lie To Me.” That one is really good. It’s really fun to play as a full band. It has a lot of energy.
R: We have that one recorded as a solo thing, but we play it live, together, too.
ADAM AND WILL, WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO TAKE THE SOLO PROJECT TO THE NEXT LEVEL AND FORM A BAND WITH REBECCA?
A: She’s --- she’s good!!
W: She’s incredible, yeah!
R: Aww. . .
W: We had heard her for a little while, and when Adam started recording her, we just offered to play because we wanted to. It was just something we felt that we really wanted to do.
DESCRIBE YOUR CREATIVE/ SONGWRITING PROCESS. HOW DOES IT WORK FOR YOU ALL?
R: So far, it’s just been, like, I come up with a guitar part, and I say “this is what it is,” and somehow, the first time, they can just play it really well. I don’t give any direction on what they’re doing and they just make it sound super awesome. That’s what we’ve done so far, but we haven’t worked together that much [in terms of] creating something from nothing.
HOW DOES THE ASHEVILLE MUSIC SCENE INFLUENCE THIS PROCESS?
R: There are a lot of really talented people who live here. I feel like when I see people it influences me in the sense that it just makes me want to write more music.
A: The weird thing about the Asheville scene is that there’s just so many different good music. It’s hard to make a scene around specific sounds because everybody’s doing their own thing. But at the same time, being a musician in that kind of environment is very freeing because you can just do whatever you want; there’s not anyone trying to stop you. It’s just everyone doing their own thing. You can just play music.
WHAT BANDS/ ARTISTS INFLUENCE YOU THE MOST? WHAT KIND OF MUSIC MADE YOU WANT TO START CREATING?
R: Well, I really like Snail Mail. . . Okay, this has nothing to do with what we play, but my parents would always play disco tunes around me as a kid. I don’t feel like that made any impact on me. Haha!! At all.
W: I guess what got me started playing bass was, when I was in high school my sister took me to see Dave Matthews on a fourth of July show. I mean, it’s Dave Matthews, but the bass player was just sitting back, with this weird face, and it looked like he was having so much fun, just chilling back there. I don't think Dave Matthews has really influenced my playing but that’s what got me wanting to play bass.
A: I was twelve and getting out of the old pop punk phase and into a classic rock phase, and lots of my dad showing me Led Zeppelin albums was great.
I FEEL LIKE IT’S ALWAYS JOHN BONHAM DOING THE INFLUENCING.
A: Yep. John Bonham was a big thing at first. But I’ve played lots of different styles of music at this point, so it’s hard to say what style is my influence. I have a lot of fun just feeding off of everybody else. Anyone who I’m playing with is an influence, at the time.
R: Aww! I remember watching this show on Nickelodeon, called “Unbreakable” or something like that. [The main character] would be really sad on her bed and be singing about her day, and I was like “damn.” It wasn’t even an artist, it was just a TV show. My initial goal was just to play open chords. I still, kind of, do that, but I’ve deviated from it.
WHAT DO YOU WANT OUT OF MUSIC/ THE MUSIC INDUSTRY? WHAT DOES THE PERFECT IMAGE OF SUCCESS LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
R: I honestly would never want to play in an arena, or something like that. I don’t feel like our type of music would get to an arena, but I wouldn’t want to be there. My idea of success would be people just recognising our music and people just enjoying it and caring about what we make. It’s not about “oh, we make this much [money],” or “oh, we play this venue.”
W: It’s if people are enjoying themselves and genuinely having a good time. This kind of music can kind of fit in any venue, and houses, and stuff like that. It would be really awesome to tour and make money to sustain the tour, but having fun and watch people having fun is [important].
A: That’s the main thing for me. Seeing people enjoy it! There’s lots of times when you play shows and, not necessarily because of the music you’re playing, but the energy isn’t there. But when it is, it’s the best feeling. That’s the main goal for me. It’s making people feel the same way about your music that you do.
ANY UPCOMING RELEASES? FUTURE ENDEAVORS YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE?
R: We have the one song, we released it today! I figured we’d just make that the feature song for the EP. I think it’s going to be about five songs total. We’ve recorded some parts, but we want to redo a lot of guitar parts! But, honestly, I don’t know, really!
A: Drums are done! That’s the longest thing, so. . . soon!
WHAT’S NEXT FOR BEX?
R: Well, this is kind of. . . my peak.
W: If we can get more shows like this, that would be pretty solid. Maybe some house shows!
A: EP is the next thing we’re working towards, and we’re playing shows along the way!
E: Gettin’ people to know who we are!
ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO ADD?
R: We’re so excited to play!
A: We’re so nervous!
R: That too.
PHOTOS BY AUDREY KEELIN