Mapping their way to the top: Meet Weekend Atlas

April 8, 2015 1 comment Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Weekend Atlas, a Jacksonville-based indie-rock band, is no stranger to One Spark, but members hope this year’s appearance will allow the band to hit the road. “What I love about One Spark is that anyone can be walking by, people that would never give your music the time of day…will be walking on the street for happy hour or something and hear you,” said Brennan Hinck, one of the band’s lead vocalists.

"Faces" by Weekend Atlas, Official Video directed by Keagan Anfuso

By Nathalie Pierre
#IgniteMedia News Agency

The group, creator No. 22034 at One Spark, also participated last year in the crowdfunding festival. Band members signed up again this year not only for touring money, according to Nick Garcia, the band’s guitarist and violinist, but also because they hope to gain new fans.

“One Spark is a great way to connect and network with some of the most talented individuals in Jacksonville,” he said. “It’s also a ton of fun and great for exposure.”

They’re so enthusiastic about their chances at One Spark that members have already started to set tour dates. So far, they have concerts set in Philadelphia and New York City.

That distance will be a change for the local band, which has yet to travel farther away than Ybor City in Tampa to play.

Band members said playing to a wider geographic area would also help enlarge their fan base.

“Hopefully [we’ll] spread our music to more people and try to make an impact,” said Hinck.

They’ve already released one self-titled debut album. The cost of the album came straight out of their own pockets, a financial hit that helps explain why they’re relying on One Spark’s crowdfunding to raise funds for their tour.

Weekend Atlas started as a collaboration between Garcia and Hinck in 2013. Since then, they’ve enlisted the help of Kelly White as vocalist, John Stribling as drummer, Mike Pruitt as keyboardist, Carter Hess as trumpet player, and Jacob Casey as the band’s bassist.

While the members didn’t initially know one another, they now are a tight team.

“We all just really work well together,” Hinck said. “We’re all just really good friends and just connect really well.”

When it comes to writing music, Hinck, White and Garcia carry most of the load. While the majority of the lyrics also come from them, all band members are encouraged to contribute.

For instance, on the band’s album, Pruitt contributed one of the songs.
“We’re trying to get everyone to write more and like, you know, just express themselves, because everyone’s different,” Hinck said. “We all have really, really different tastes.”

The band draws its major influences from bands such as The Kooks, The Head and The Heart, Noah and The Whale, Arctic Monkeys, The Beatles, and The Shins.

“We’re an indie-folk band with a bit of rock—but not the crazy rock,” Hinck said. “Our style is like Of Monsters and Men.”

The dual harmonies bring the audience in and the unique use of trumpet, keyboard and violin sets the group apart from other bands that use more traditional instruments.

The fact that Weekend Atlas has seven members also sets them apart. Having more members and more instrumentalists provides the band a larger sound and gives it the opportunity to add nontraditional instruments.

“I think what sets us apart is our sound. Like, I’ve never heard anyone in Jacksonville with the same sound as us,” Hinck said. “There’s seven of us and just the elements we use, plus Kelly’s voice is just out of this world.”
Five of the seven member have jobs outside of the band, from cooks to sales associates, but they take time for their mudic because they love it.

“We do this because we love music and love how it’s universal,” Garcia said. “We [want to] share a message of love and be the reason that people smile and dance.”

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