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Check Out Green Tree Novelty Tea’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Green Tree Novelty Tea.  

Green Tree Novelty Tea, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
Hello! Our names are Corey Haren and Eric Vaught, and we play in a band called Green Tree Novelty Tea. 

Corey is the vocalist and plays an instrument that we call the “hybrid guitar,” and Eric plays drums, as well as a synthesizer, and does some vocals as well. 

We started playing music together in a high school band called Attica and later played in a band called Mount Ratz that was active during our college years. We started using the name Green Tree Novelty Tea about 10 years ago whenever our usual band couldn’t make a gig, or if we were playing an improvised show as a two-piece. 

Green Tree Novelty Tea wasn’t a “real” band until after Mount Ratz disbanded about 6 years ago. 

We started writing new music together right away with conventional drums and guitar, but soon had the vision to expand our sound to places that would typically require additional instruments and band members. 

Since then, we have been exploring and refining our sound. In particular, we have expanded and pushed the boundaries and expectations of what can be done with the electric guitar. Inspired by jazz guitarist Charlie Hunter, we had special guitar electronics developed that allow Corey the ability to sound as though a bassist and guitarist are playing together. 

At the moment we are wrapping up the recordings for our next release, recorded at Fallen Trees Recording Studio in Mount Airy, NC. 

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
Achieving our desired sound is an ongoing challenge. Since our intent is to sound like a 3 or 4-piece band, we have had to find creative solutions both in the way we compose the music and in the ways that we use technology. The creative limitation of working with only two musicians always provides us with new challenges that stimulate our creative process. 

Like most musicians, we were initially halted by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, this quickly led to alternate methods of creating and collaborating. We had never worked remotely before, but, utilizing recording software and file sharing, we adapted and ultimately benefitted from this new way of working. 

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
We would describe our music as dynamic, theatrical, and engaging. Stylistically, we draw from a range of influences such as jazz, extreme metal, pop music, progressive rock, and others. We take a cinematic approach to our music and enjoy offering the listener a vibrant sonic landscape in which to explore. 

We enjoy new creative exercises and are exploring this in our newest material by creating a fictional narrative that will connect all of the individual songs thematically. We are excited by the prospect of new artistic avenues that story-based songwriting will provide us. Writing a fictional and conceptual narrative into our music allows us to draw upon a wide variety of themes and experiences – as opposed to drawing solely from one’s individual experience. 

What makes you happy?
We enjoy, above all, expressing ourselves and creating music together, just as we have done together for the last 15 years. We feel fortunate to be back to playing together and getting to share our music with others again, and we’re feeling more motivated than ever to push ourselves to our fullest potential. 

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Image Credits

Ryan Lohr
Jason Chamberlain

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