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‘Family of the Year’ now charm crowds everywhere they go, but it all started with a chance encounter outside an LA bar

l_67e134b9652c41548beae4df18be9a90It’s not often you come across a band that has, yes, six members. On top of that two are dating, two are brothers, and it still all manages to work out wonderfully. Sound impossible? Not for California’s Family of the Year who are one such band. The self-professed indie-rock-folk-Americana songsters have just released their debut album, Songbook, and seem to be charming their way onto everyone’s iPod. If you haven’t heard them yet, SPIN Magazine recommends that you do – and so does The Rock and Roll Report.

The band consists of: Vanessa Jeanne Long (vocals), Joe Beaulieu Keefe (Vocals & Guitar), Sebastian Keefe (Drums & Guitar), James Buckey (Keys), Christina Schroeter (Keys) and Brent Freaney (Bass). Vanessa recently phoned in for a chat about Rock Band’s (yes, the videogame) pivotal role in their formation, impossible to remember band names and actually living and feeling like a family.

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The Fast Romantics on Playing CBGB’s, Near-Death Experiences, Approaches for Crack – Proof That a Musician’s Life is Never Dull

frThe Fast Romantics are a band who seem to have everything going for them. The foursome from Calgary, Alberta, Canada have had their current members in place since late 2007 – Matthew Angus (Vocals), Matthew Kliewer (Guitar), Jeffrey Lewis (Bass), Alan Reain (Drums)  – and have been enjoying a very successful streak, with no signs of slowing down. Their self-titled debut album is overflowing with their signature quirky sound and has had people talking and instilling constant praise on the band since its release.

Their standout sound even caught the ears of some industry bigwigs and The Fast Romantics were named one of the four finalists in the SPIN Earth/John Varvatos Contest in search of the world’s next great rock and roll band. As one of the four finalists they performed at the old CBGB’s in New York City last September, where they absorbed as much as they possibly could from the rocking judges panel, which included: John Varvatos, Perry Farrell and Antonio “L.A.” Reid.

The Rock and Roll Report caught up with the two Matthews the day after their big New York City gig, just as they were getting set to rock Montreal, Quebec.