Walking into the room where the Purewater Construction Band plays is is undeniably loud but at the same time, inviting. Describing themselves as a rock band that appreciates good musiProxy-Connection: keep-alive
but also doesn’t take themselves too seriously, they epitomize what music is about — playing because they love it, not for profit.
The band consists of four Cal Poly students. Band member Ben Turner, a civil engineering graduate student, said they play music to laugh and make others do the same.
“We didn’t really start a band for the purpose of starting a band. We just wanted to jam and have a good time, and then we got asked to play; we’d open up for a concert, and then all of a sudden it was like ‘wow this makes us a band,'” Turner said.
A mixture of Flight of the Concords-style humor, Creedence Clearwater Revival’s bluesy guitar/folk-feel and a Beastie Boys blend of rock and rap, the band creates a new genre with their music. With lyrics such as “All these ladies they want to have sex with me, and I don’t want no goddamn babies,” they infuse real life with humor.
The band first started more than two years ago with only three members, brothers Ben Turner and electrical engineering junior Jack Turner, and environmental management and protection senior Dylan Theobald. It wasn’t until Theobald went to New Zealand five months ago to study abroad that philosophy senior Cameron McChesney became part of the band. Their first show as a foursome will be Sunday, at Del’s Pizzeria in Shell Beach.
One of the things they said they’re looking forward to seeing is the crowd’s reaction. Before every show they get together before going on stage to decide what they are going to do. In the past they have asked the audience for a topic and then sang an a capella custom-fit song from that topic. Ben said Dylan and himself would then go back and forth with made up lyrics.
“We figure that if we start off really bad then we can only get better,” Jack Turner said.
Despite how relaxed they are about the content, they take the actual music seriously making sure to consistently play together. Every Thursday the four of them meet at Theobald’s house at 6:30 to play.
“It’s not a chore to go to these practices,” MChesney said. “I look forward to Thursdays, to get to play with them.”
Theobald lives with two other non-band members at the house they practice in now. Despite the fact that majority of the house has been taken over with music equipment — the living room is a stage with fully set up drums and stands for guitars — the roommates don’t mind.
“I actually like it, it’s a good break. I like all their music and we’re all friends,” mechanical engineering senior Matt Laurino said. “One of the conditions this year was to move it (equipment) to a little study room (off the living room) after they’re done. They set up and take down almost every night.”
Laurino, Ben Turner and Theobald all used to live in the house before Ben Turner moved out last year. Laurino said the band has practiced for almost two years there, but it wasn’t until recently that the band took over one of the rooms permanently.
Besides going from three members to four they also changed their name. Originally they started out with the name Purewater Wallaby’s but changed it when they started dressing up in construction gear for each show. McChesney, who didn’t know where the name came from, thought that it was in reference to the fact that “you can’t construct something that is pure,” to which the rest of the band laughed and blamed his deep thoughts on his philosophical background.
Each member has been playing at least one instrument for over five years, and all can play multiple instruments. McChesney has been playing the guitar for more than 13 years, and also plays bass for the band. Jack Turner, who is nicknamed “little Turner,” can play almost anything he gets his hands on from the drums and guitar to the occasional rapping.
“He actually sings better than any of us, guaranteed, but drums makes it a little difficult,” Theobald said.
Theobald, who recently got back from New Zealand, has been playing the guitar and singing for the past 12 years, while also playing the drums for the last five years.
Ben Turner became the main vocalist when the band was formed and he has played the guitar for more than six years.
With their extensive knowledge of music as well as how to make music, each member had a different influence to bring to the band.
“One of our biggest influences is definitely our dad. He’s been playing guitar and singing since we were little kids. Most of our original songs Ben wrote, which has been largely influenced by our dad,” Jack Turner said.
Besides the brothers’ dad, other influences draw from a variety of genres, including Waylon Jennings, Flight of the Conchords and Rolling Stones. They likened their music to Tenacious D, as they have a similar style to what they are doing.
“…Our songs try to be kinda humorous, not totally serious, but still have a good grounding of music,” Theobald said. “There is still good music behind it no matter what we are saying.”
Ben Turner said they still get excited about playing shows.
“The thing I like the most is when I look out and see all these people having fun, and it’s like, ‘Wow, we were the cause of that,'” he said.
Although they love to play they realize that it is just a fad. All of them intend to have serious careers and have no intentions of making the band into a career.
“We will play as long as we can,” Ben Turner said.