The Mike Luno Band took home the grand prize at our Van Sessions finals in September. You can also check out the band live on November 9th at the Cellar!
Please introduce us to the Mike Luno Band:
Mike Luno-lead vocals, guitar.
Jason Nickel – electric bass, backing vocals
Curtis “Dr. C” Leippi – drums
How did you get your stage name?
As a band based in Victoria, BC, we first called ourselves Victoria Secret; when that name got a bit old, we became Devil You Don't. We switched to Mike's name as he writes and sings most of the material, and we thought a person-name might draw more attention to the music and less to the image than a 'band name' per se.
How long have you been playing together with the current lineup?
Curtis and Mike have played together nearly 16 years. With Jason – about 16 days.
If I was to put you on the spot and ask you to define your genre, what would you call it?
Our genre – skunkrogoprockusion (you did say get creative)... It is rock with varying elements of funk, fusion, prog, ska and pop. Ask for it by name!
Do you have any major artistic influences?
Tons of influences – biggies might include the Screaming Headless Torsos, Leonard Cohen, Sting/Police, Led Zeppelin and the Dave Matthews Band.
What is the most rewarding thing about being in a band?
The most rewarding moments are when the band creates music that transports the audience and band to a natural high. Mighty powerful and addictive
What is the hardest part about being in a band?
Not starving. Technology and consumer culture being what it is today, it's quite a challenge turning one's art into something that can support and sustain you financially.
How did you come across Supernova.com and what would you tell other artists about Supernova?
I first heard of Supernova in their joint efforts with local radio stations to promote upcoming independent artists.
I would encourage other bands to support and promote any organization that in turn promotes and supports artists in a non-exploitative way.
Do you have a motto or recipe for putting on a good show?
Over-rehearse so that everyone is confident onstage; be keenly aware of Murphy's Law and plan accordingly. Minimize down-time between songs and keep the vibe with fellow musicians positive. Be supportive and relaxed onstage.
Maximize the visual contact with the audience; don't keep your eyes down on your instrument! Remember that the audience came to see/hear you express yourself. Ad never give up hope in turning a performance into a victory (e.g.: if you stumble all over the first song, don't half-ass the rest of the set dejectedly); be the band you would want to see and hear.
What is your most memorable moment thus far as a band?
Very tough question, considering our relatively long history! Our first recording session as a band, way back in '97 leaps to mind first. In a very state-of-the-art studio (Zero Gravity, Victoria), we recorded and mixed a 3-song demo all night long and captured something magic in the musical chemistry of the four guys.
What is the funniest story/strangest experience that you have had as a band?
Playing a gig on a restaurant rooftop. We were to keep playing as the main rooftop dining area was cleared of patrons to make way for a private party. Those not in the private party were required to listen to the band from behind an enclosed bar or from the rooftop volleyball court. We couldn't see our audience and they couldn't see us, but they could hear us on speakers – and we could hear them wildly applauding between numbers. Otherwise, we were playing to an empty room and lots of sky.
If you had your way, where would you be in 2 years?
If we had our way, in two years Mike Luno Band would have reached a wide and loyal audience, recorded an album or two, toured North America, Europe, Australia and beyond, and effectively promoted other artists who we admire and respect.
Opening for Dave Matthews, Sting or Rush would be just dandy too.
In closing, is there anything else that makes your band unique that new listeners should know?
What makes Mike Luno Band unique? We've always aspired to make music that equally compels the listener to ponder the implications of the lyrics, hum the quirky melodies, soak in the colours of the unusual chords, or dance to the super-tight rhythm section. All that and the vocal timbre, drum tone/arrangement, and nuvo-retro guitar stylings make for a musical composite completely our own.
To keep up with the band, check them out on Facebook
Supernova.com is your link to people who share the same passion for discovering music. Connect with indie bands, music fans, and the emerging scene. Supernova.com is the only online music community which actively promotes its music artists by producing live Battle of the Bands® shows to showcase their music and talents. Sign up on Supernova.com to find gigs, play live shows, discover new bands, and listen to new music.