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Pulse Lifeline: Seymore Saves the World

I sat down with Scott Hefte of Seymore Saves the World to get the scoop on the band, the album, and few other random facts for curious minds. Although it took a total of three phone calls to complete (have to love dead cell-phone zones), here’s Seymore Saves the World:

Name: Scott Hefte

Background Story: Lead singer for Seymore Saves the World. He also plays keyboard, trombone, and chimes on their most recent album.

Label: Royalty, Etc. Records (www.royaltyetc.com)

Inspirations: Ben Folds Five, The Bad Plus, Weezer, Built to Spill, Mates of State

Current Album: Seymore Saves the World, 2007

Style: Indie-pop, with an emphasis on the piano rock.

Review: It’s not only the world that needs saving, sometimes a break from the ordinary is needed as well. Luckily for Indie-Pop fans… [Check out the rest of the review in the review section]

Songs You Shouldn’t Miss: Team Player, So Cold, Poppies

Overall Album Grade: B+

MJ: So, how did you get involved in music?

SH: Since I was four years old my mother and father made me take piano lessons. I fought it as much as I could because I hated it. Then one day I got to college and didn’t have to take them anymore, and realized I really did like it, so kept playing.

MJ: I understand completely. My parents did the same thing to me with piano, and I ended up liking it more when I went to school as well.

SH: Yeah, I never thought I’d like it, but then when I had the choice to or not I guess I did. I went from really hating the piano to really liking it.

MJ: With a long background in music, what moment was it in life that let you know you wanted to be a musician as a career?

SH: It was high school. My mom took me to Lollapalooza. That was the point I thought maybe I could be in a band. So I got involved in a couple things. I remember this one show we did at the high school, and afterwards hearing the applause for the song I wrote was so great.

MJ: And now you’re in “Seymore Saves the World”?

SH: Yes, but I’ve been in three other bands before that also.

MJ: So, what’s the story behind the name “Seymore Saves the World”?

SH: Seymore comes from two tragic characters. I learned about them while I attended school at Bowling Green. We read “The Last Exist to Brooklyn” in a class, which is where one of the Seymore characters comes from, and then also Seymore from “Ghost World.” I thought it would be cool to have these tragic characters saving the world. It fits well with the band, because it’s a similar theme. I mean it’s nerdy to be in a band, and I’ve been sorta nerdy all my life, and it’s sort of like “here’s this dork making music and it’s pretty good.”

MJ: You went to Bowling Green?

SH: I went to graduate school at Bowling Green.

MJ: How was your experience?

SH: I really did enjoy Bowling Green. It is a nice size compared to where I went for my undergraduate studies. It was a lot smaller compared to here. But I like being able to be anonymous on campus.

MJ: What was your major?

SH: Special Education. I started off in Education but went back to get my special education degree.

MJ: Okay, random question – if you could have any super power what would it be?

SH: Hm, that’s a good question.

MJ: Have to think for a minute about it?

SH: Yeah. Well, maybe teleporting. So I don’t have to drive as much. Hm, I think something that would let me drive less and sleep more. Especially with sleeping more.

MJ: What are some of your favorite songs on the album?

SH: Well love songs seem to be the popular things these days, but I really like “Red Wing” and “Poppies”. We actually play the trombone live for those songs. “So Cold”, a song our bassist wrote, is also powerful because it pulls a lot of emotion out of the band.

MJ: What’s one of the most embarrassing, or interesting experiences while working with the band?

SH: We were playing this show, and were pretty unknown, and they had made a giant sign for it, but it said “Sexmore Saves the World” instead of Seymore. We kept the sign after the show. That’s probably the worst misspelling we’ve ever had of the name. It was pretty funny though. “Sexmore Saves the World.”

MJ: Nice. Do you have your name misspelled often then?

SH: Yeah, I guess “Seymore” is normally spelled “Seymour” so we get a lot of those kinds of misspellings often. I didn’t know that at the time it was spelled the other way, but I spelled it the way I wanted it to be anyway. Also sometimes we get things like “saves the day” and misspellings such as that.

MJ: What’s the coolest gig you have ever done?

SH: Our CD Release Party at the Varsity Theatre. It was a beautiful theatre and we played really well. Usually Shawn and I are picky about our own performances, but we both came off saying “wow we really nailed it.”

MJ: And your favorite venue?

SH: The Art Museum in St. Paul. It was really cool to play at a museum.

MJ: All right, last question, another random one, are you ready for it?

SH: Sure.

MJ: Who would win in a fight, a penguin or a badger?

SH: Hm. A badger I think. More teeth and things it could use as weapons on it.

And there you have it. If you’re interested in hearing more, Seymore Saves the World performs Wednesday night at Howard’s.

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