Nerds are cool. We know that. Hip hop’s cool. So, why the heck wouldn’t hiphop/rock group Band Nerds be cool too? Answer’s easy. It is!
Although the rock genre undoubtedly manifested directly from the Black community, Rock ‘n’ Roll is often credited with the charge of helping to bridge the gap between blacks and whites back in the 50’s when segregation was the norm. It seems strange now that 60 years on, seeing an all black rock band causes people to raise their eyebrows in fascination as if they were fish out of water, when in fact, we created the pond (so to speak).
Here’s an all black, rock group doing great things down south in Texas (and probably nationwide any day now). Band members Brandon “Cross”(Multi instruments), Dorian "Scullie McClendon"(Guitar), Carlos "DJ Sol*Los"(DJ), Tony “Nagee” (vocals) and "Cam I Am" Green (drums) get their name from the fact that some of the group members were band nerds back in high school, a stigma which could have been difficult to shake off but these guys have owned their nerdy pasts and flipped it into something kinda awesome.
Interview by Ayara Pommells, AFROPUNK Contributor *
We really aren't nerdy per se more or less outcast, but yes people are extremely surprised.
Which members of the band were ACTUAL band nerds?
All the members were in band but only three members played actively through school. Cross the lead guitar player and lyricist played the trumpet. Cam I Am our drummer, well… played the drums and Mark our bassist was also percussion.
What's the rock scene like in Texas?
Nonexistent if you're Black. They put a stereotype and label of hip-hop just cause we are black.
What's special about your live shows?
Energy, professionalism, we are ACTUALLY playing all the instruments and we have audience connection.
Do you feel as though you have a trademark sound?
Yes. Normally when you have an alternative hip hop band the front men are usually mediocre. We take the lyricism of hip-hop and merge it with nu metal post hardcore sound.
Number one pet peeve?
Being judge and pigeonholed before we even perform. Sometimes we aren't even given the chance.
Why should our readers check you out?
Why should they check us out? Why not is more the question. People are thirsty for something different. Band Nerds has what they need.
These guys are not ‘playing around’ with rock. It’s pretty aggressive sounding riffs and pounding drums with Nagee’s vocals taking center stage painting illustrious tales of an angsty, self conscious youth (“Don’t Love Me”), heartache (“Bitter”)or even just plain, super randy sexiness (perfectly demonstrated on “Hooray for Sexy Time”). Nagee’s lyrical abilities are impressive. Far from being a corny rocking trying his hand at being a rapper, his skills are more than proficient. The transitions and blending of the two genres are flawless. It’s a shame to have to categorize these guys (as they obviously hate being forced into a box) but they really are hip hop and rock… for real.
Underneath the gritty exterior, these guys really have hearts of gold. If you head on over to the Reverbnation player above and purchase one of their singles, half of the profit will be donated towards Love, Hope & Strength charity, who build and support cancer centers across the globe. Pretty rad. Give their music a listen and then cough up those pennies and help out a great cause!