Q&A: Quiet Life's Sean Spellman

Quiet Life

Quiet Life is an up and coming alt-country quartet hailing from Connecticut. Act Natural, the band’s stellar debut, came out a few weeks ago and features an intriguing mix of Wilco and the Black Crowes. The group stops at Club Dada tonight on its way to SXSW. Quiet Life’s main singer/songwriter Sean Spellman took some time before a show in New Orleans to chat with DC-9.

What do a bunch of guys from Connecticut know about roots music?

Not much. That’s what we’re trying to learn. That’s why we’re going on tour. Actually, this type of music is what my brother and I grew up listening to. My dad always had Springsteen on and Creedence and I was being educated without even knowing it. I owe a lot to my Dad. The first show he took me to was Neil Young and Crazy Horse.

Do you worry that people might see the name Quiet Life and think you guys are some kind of new age act?

That’s funny because I was at the bank the other day and when I told the teller I was in a band called Quiet Life, she asked if we played folk music. I told her our music had some folk qualities to it, but we also play loud stuff. My brother actually got the name from a song by The Jealous Sound. Actually, I am kind of reluctant to tell people where we got the name, 'cause that’s not a band we really want to be associated with. I mean, they are a good band, but that was the kind of music we listened to at a certain time in our lives. It was either Quiet Life or the Dirty Birds.

Who is cooler: Jeff Tweedy or Chris Robinson?

It depends on what you mean by cool. I got to meet Chris Robinson once and it’s pretty damn cool when you’re having tuna steaks for dinner and you’ve got Kate Hudson by your side. I’ve never met Jeff Tweedy, so I can’t really judge.

Isn’t the music of the Black Crowes much more immediate than that of Wilco?

I totally agree. But if you spend time with Wilco’s Sky Blue Sky. It just blows you away. You can put any of those songs on the radio -- even the experimental ones -- and people would dig it.

What role does alcohol, hangovers and pain medication play in the band?

I don’t want to talk about hangovers. I don’t even want to think about hangovers. I’m not hungover right now, but I have a month ahead of me on the road.

What about your album cover? Do all those butterflies make it look effeminate?

A lot of people say that! We just told our friend, Dave, to do whatever he wanted. We gave him the CD and told him to come up with something. He was reading a book about Monarch butterflies, about them migrating across the Great Lakes. He might have been a little cosmic when he did it.

Is “cosmic” a euphemism for high?

Sure is.

What song of yours would work as a television theme song?

My friend Chris tells me “Were You Singing” would be good on the WB, and that’s cool because I hear they pay well.

Quiet Life performs with These United States 8 p.m. tonight at Club Dada. -- Darryl Smyers

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