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The Sleeps

The Sleeps
“It’s an experience you really can’t capture anywhere else, you know, being up on stage with people listening and talking about what you’re doing. You really don’t encounter that scenario in any other part of your life. Once you experience it, you want more of it.” - “The Sleeps.”

“The Sleeps,” made up of Andrew Matko on bass guitar and vocals and Ricky Fiske on drumset, is a local band that started in 2007. The band started simply out of an enjoyment for music. “It’s always been a hobby. We would get together and play in the garage for fun. It’s basically for enjoyment and means of creative expression. Also, playing live with a receptive audience is instant gratification.” - Andrew. “The Sleeps” was formed from a band called “Party Bear,” a group in which Andrew played with Ricky’s cousin, Dave Strock. Dave was a part of “The Sleeps” for awhile, on vocals and keyboard, but moved to Florida ending his time with the band.

When Dave was in “The Sleeps,” he and Andrew were the band’s primary songwriters. When Dave left, there was a distinct change in the sound due to different songwriting styles. “Lyrics are kind of like a diary for me. When we were a three piece, I was co-writing with David and his lyrics were happier and brighter. Mine are always about being disappointed in something. Sadder songs have always resonated with me. With this record, ‘Lack of Meaning,’ you can notice more depressing undertones.” - Andrew. Along with changing lyrically, instrumentation changed. Keyboard was taken away, and Andrew moved from guitar to bass guitar. Lyrics went from being front and center to being heavily affected and adding to the overall soundscape.

With the amount of music “The Sleeps” has released, you would think they record in some fancy recording studio, but they actually record in Ricky’s basement. “We use computer programs like Pro-tools to record. Usually we can achieve about 75 percent of what a producer could come up with.” As a next step they said they would definitely be interested in recording in a studio. “I think it would be cool to go somewhere, have them do all the work and just have fun playing the music. It’s great to just play the music the way you want and have them worry about all the details while achieving the sound you want. I’ve always considered us to be a live band and I would like to be much more of a recording artist.” - Andrew

Just a couple weeks ago, “The Sleeps” had the opportunity to play at the Brite Winter festival. It was the first time they played for the fest and they had a lot of fun. “The bars were filled with people who actually are willing to go outside when the time comes to watch you play, which was really cool. You could tell it was a well-promoted, well-orchestrated event. The people were pretty receiving - it seems like people who normally wouldn’t talk to us did this time. It was good exposure.”

“The Sleeps” said an important part of standing the test of time is “meeting people and building relationships, which builds product recognition. You have to strike a balance with how much you seek and how much you let come to you because if you’re seeking too much, people will start to get annoyed. And most importantly, you have to have a real personal appreciation, confidence and enthusiasm for your own work. You have to be proud of it. You have to do it for yourself because there has to be some value to it in your own heart. If you have that enthusiasm for what you’re doing, you’re going to naturally want to share it with other people.”