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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    UA reggae-alt band rocks the West Coast


    Courtesy of Something Like Seduction

    Something Like Seduction plays music for a videographer.

    “We were at the point in our lives when we were trying to figure out what we should do, and we thought, ‘Why not do this? Why not try to make this work?’” said Esteban Obregon, a general studies junior, when remembering why he and his three best friends started their reggae-alternative band, Something Like Seduction. “… It’s all of our passions: writing music, playing music, making music together. Freshman year, we decided we have one life, so why not roll the dice? We can do it.”

    Obregon is the drummer and manager of the four-piece band, accompanied by Connor Shea on lead vocals, Tyler Cunningham with bass and Nik Gelo with lead guitar. Obregon, Shea and Gelo started the band in their junior year of high school at Brophy College Preparatory in Phoenix. Cunningham quickly joined the mix after Nikhar Abbas’ departure during their freshman year at the UA.

    “We found Tyler [in] August of freshman year,” Obregon said. “He stumbled into our dorm one day when we were jamming, and he started jamming with us. The rest is history.”

    Obregon said he, Cunningham, and Shea plan to make the band a real career. Over their past three years at the UA, the band has played countless live gigs at a myriad of venues including The Rialto Theatre, Hotel Congress, The Rock and The Hut.

    They even played a festival in Tempe last year, opening for popular reggae-inspired bands such as Pepper, Atmosphere, Iration, Tribal Seeds, Dirty Heads and the FloBots. Obregon describes this as “one of the band’s proudest moments.” The band embarked on its first tour of the West Coast this past January.

    On May 18, only four days after the end of finals, the band will leave sunny Tucson for Huntington Beach, Calif., where its second tour of the California coast will begin. Over the span of 22 days, the band will play 15 shows.

    Obregon said the hardest part about touring, coincidentally, is booking the gigs themselves.

    “These days, [venue owners] just won’t respond, so I was pretty proud of myself for [booking 15 shows],” Obregon said. “People ask, ‘Who did this for you guys?’ and I’m just like, I did. And they’re like, ‘Oh, shit!’ I’ve learned and getting us out to California was really hard, so I’m proud of that.”

    The band is touring California because Obregon said he feels the chance to succeed here in Tucson is less promising.

    “A lot of the students here don’t give a fuck about live music,” Obregon said. “They would rather go to a club and listen to some Zed. Here on [Fourth Avenue] there’s just a ton of clubs, but in California, they have live bands at bars for entertainment, so a lot of the venues just have a built-in crowd that people go to drink at. They just bring out so many people [that could hear our music].”

    Obregon said each member of Something Like Seduction has their own shtick. He said he and Cunningham are more of the managers of the group, handling gig planning, touring and finances; they are “first and second in command,” maintaining the group’s direction. However, Cunningham also writes music, possessing the ability to “flesh out entire songs.” Shea and Gelo are the more musically creative members of the group.

    “[Shea] is super talented; he writes melodies without writing words to them,” Obregon said. “[Gelo] has a punk style that’s pretty different in our music, but it adds a really cool element.”

    However, Gelo will not return next year or join the band’s summer tour due to a job opportunity with Apple.

    “It’s gonna be weird not having him, but life goes on,” Obregon said. “I’m sad, but with one door that closes, another opens.”

    Obregon said the best part of being in the band is playing live shows.

    “Recently, especially after the EP came out, you hear people sing the words back to you,” Obregon said. “That’s pretty dope, hearing people sing your songs. The energy you can feel from people, them dancing and shit; it sounds lame, but the vibes are super crazy. You’re just like, ‘Damn, this is nuts.’”

    In five years, Obregon said he hopes to see the band producing out of its own home studio, profitably touring and, most importantly, making music. Before departing for the summer tour, the band will play one last show with Gelo at The Rock on April 25. Tickets will be $5 each. Something Like Seduction’s second full-length album will also be available this summer on Spotify, iTunes and its website for free.


    Follow Brenna Bailey on Twitter.

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