From the moment I first heard The Tea Club, I knew I was going to love them. To me, they are the perfect example of taking the framework of progressive rock’s past and bringing it into the future. With memorable melodies that stick with you for weeks and thoughtful words and lyrics that seem to always reveal further levels of brilliance over time, The Tea Club never fails to impress.
If you’ve never heard The Tea Club, I would recommend starting with their latest release, The stunning If/When, and working backwards to the rest of their consistently brilliant discography. The current lineup is their most impressive yet- brothers Dan and Pat McGowan trade lead vocal duties and guitars, while keyboardist Joe Dorsey creates incredibly complex but tasteful synth parts, all to the rhythm of the intimidatingly talented Jamie Wolff on bass and Dan Monda on drums.
In just a few days, The Tea Club will be performing at ProgStock 2021, and while it will be the second time they are taking the ProgStock stage, it will be the first time they are playing as a full band. We spoke with The Tea Club’s Patrick McGowan about their performance, as well as some of his feelings and insights for the show.
Tell us about what you’ve been up to lately. What’s new in the Tea Club camp?
We’ve been doing a lot of writing. There hasn’t really been much else to do, from a band perspective. But we’ve been dutiful and have tried to make the most of our time. We have a lot of new material. The last two years have changed us in some ways, both as people and as artists. How could it not, really? It’s hard to say how apparent it will be once the new stuff starts coming out. We’ll just have to wait and see. But just know that, as always, we’ve put our heart and soul into the new music maybe at a necessary level we’ve never before imagined.
The first time you all played at ProgStock, you played as an acoustic trio. What can people who saw you then expect to be different this time?
When we performed as a trio at our last Progstock show it was actually something of a watershed moment for us. We pulled together and tried an experiment which came about out of tragedy. But in some ways it ended up showing us the potential of a new multiple faceted approach to the band which we’ve been pursuing ever since. So, for instance, at this year’s festival we’ll be playing as a full 5 piece rock band ensemble as well as a trio, a duo, and even solo. Stylistically the music I think will reflect that range and might also hint at the changes the band has been going through that I mentioned earlier.
Any surprises in store for fans of the band at this event?
Well, in addition to the line-up variations from the last question, I’d say there will be some stylistic surprises. We’re debuting a lot of new material and I think the broadening range of the band will come across nicely. But, that said, we did have to keep the new stuff to a minimum because we have this one song in the set that takes up a lot of time!
What are you most excited about for this ProgStock event?
As trite as it might sound, I’m simply excited to do it. There was a time not too long ago where I couldn’t imagine ever being able to play for people again. I guess we’re still in uncharted waters but I’m just really looking forward to being together and playing music for people again. May it be a blessed and wonderful time for everyone and may the perseverance of the Progstock people pay off richly as they’ve overcome an incredible amount of obstacles. Here’s to a little bit of healing!
ProgStock will be taking place from October 1-3, 2021. Full schedule can be found here. Click on the image link below to purchase your tickets!