On Saturday, February 20th, JB’s on 41 welcomes CLOVE, a high energy, fun-loving cover band. From 9 pm to 1 am, CLOVE will be rocking out in JB’s bar – and we hope you will be, too!
We had the chance to speak with Chris Sodemann, the drummer for CLOVE and one of the original, founding members of the band. Read on to get to know Chris and CLOVE a little better…
JB’s on 41: Tell me about CLOVE.
Chris Sodemann: We started as a band about 15 years ago or so. Two of us met at the music program at MATC. Ron was a guitar player who knew a buddy…all we had to find was a bassist. For about 10 years, it was us original four. Then a fifth guy joined in, and another left. We plugged along with three of us, Ron, Kyle, and myself, for a little while before finding a new guitarist and a female vocalist. Now we have a solid group of six – and sometimes seven.
JB’s: Introduce us – who are the members of CLOVE?
CS: There’s me, on drums, Ron Klug, lead singer and guitar player, and Michael James Hecker, lead guitarist. Danny Kerns is on keyboard, guitar, and also helps with vocals. Our bass player is Kyle Worm. We have two female vocalists, Becca Segal and Amanda Pike.
JB’s: And where does the name “CLOVE” come from?
CS: [laughing] I have no idea! Someone came in one day saying, “Hey, what about this [for a band name]?” It sounded good to us. Everyone always asks if it comes from Clove cigarettes…I really don’t know. Maybe.
JB’s: Tell me about you. How did you become a drummer?
CS: I’ve been drumming since 5th grade. I loved playing, so in high school I was in band and marching band. After high school, I went to MATC for its music program. After a few semesters, though, I realized the music program wasn’t exactly what I wanted to do. That’s why CLOVE is so great – I love playing and still get to, all these years later.
JB’s: What’s your favorite song to play?
CS: Wow. That’s really hard to narrow down. If I had to pick just one…I’d go with “All These Things That I’ve Done” by The Killers.
JB’s: How many songs do you perform in a night?
CS: Usually 30 to 35 songs. We do about 15 songs in a set.
JB’s: Your genre is a little bit of everything – give us some examples of what that means.
CS: We were strictly an alternative cover band when we first started, think 90s to early 2000s alternative. But, especially in the last couple years, we’ve been playing new songs. Since we’ve got two great female vocalists now, there’s a whole new range of things we can play. It usually goes like, “Hey – what if we try this?” And then we learn it and play it and see what kind of reaction we get. We might start with Weezer and then move to Adele, followed by Imagine Dragons…and so on.
JB’s: Where are your favorite venues to perform?
CS: On St. Patty’s day, Mulligan’s Irish Pub is really fun. They set up a heated outdoor tent, which is a blast. We also love Lindey’s On Beulah. It’s in East Troy, right on Lake Beulah. We perform there about once a month.
JB’s: Is this your first time performing at JB’s?
CS: First time. We’ll be in the bar area, in the raised part. You’ll definitely hear us out into the lanes! There will be Bud specials, Dr. McGillicudy’s shot girls…it’s going to be a great time.
JB’s: And, after this weekend, where can we find you next?
CS: On March 12th, we’ll be at Mo’s Irish Pub Downtown from 10 to 1:30 am. The following Thursday, St. Patrick’s Day, we’re at Mulligan’s from 6-10 pm. The day after, we’ll be at The Metal Grill in Cudahy, a great South Side live music venue.
JB’s: Last question: what’s the best and worst things about playing?
CS: The worst, for me anyway, is set up and tear down. It’s sometimes stressful, getting everything done in the right amount of time. Even when it’s less stressful, I have a pretty big drum kit to set up and tear down. The best is going out to play music in front of people, making people’s nights that much better. I’m doing what I love to do, and when other people enjoy it, too? That’s even better.