A Look Inside Tacoma Group Band of Lovers

Band of Lovers consists of Dave Strumfeld, who plays acoustic guitar and sings with Sabina Beachdell, who plays the ukulele and sings as well. The duo first met in col­lege as friends and eventually their relationship skyrocketed into some­thing more.

They both went to State University in New York, where Strumfeld was studying music while Beachdell was studying acting. After college in 2010, they moved in together with Strumfeld working as a music teacher while Beachdell worked as a nanny. Unhap­py with their basic jobs, they went their separate ways in 2012. A year later, they realized that they could not stand being apart and that what they wanted out of life was to travel and play music. In essence, Band of Lovers was formed.

The first thing they did to kickstart their tour and raise enough money for a full album was to create their EP. Their music focuses a lot on love. The song, “Love in the Afternoon,” is a quirky tune about spreading love and fighting for peace. They sing, “Smooth­ies in the morning, rhubarb in the evening, love in the afternoon.”

Once their EP was released, they toured across America, performing in the Southwest, Midwest, and on the Pacific Coast. Band of Lovers gets their inspiration from travels on the road.

How did these explorers end up in Tacoma? Nearing the end of their tour and not knowing what to do, they went camping in Gig Harbor. On the trip, someone offered them the chance to play at the Tacoma Antique Sandwich shop. The fans from Tacoma imme­diately welcomed them into their town.

Tacoma resident Michelle Lem­mens heard them play and loved them so much that she offered them a chance to stay at her place to further create their music.

Beachdell says, “Tacoma has this openness that we just love. The music scene in Tacoma is eclectic, and you can hear almost every genre. We start­ed building our fan base around Ta­coma, and our music seems to resonate here. We embrace Tacoma and they are embracing us back.” They have played at the Metronome Coffee House, Half-Pint Pub, Old Town Tre­os, and Northern Pacific Coffee Com­pany.

In Tacoma they have been known as orchestral folk. How exactly do they make these two different genres come together? Strumfeld says, “When you go to hear folk music you expect to hear stories in the lyrics and melodies that will have an emotional effect.” While the lyrics represent the folk genre, their choice of instruments cre­ate their very own unique sound.

Strumfeld believes that since Sa­bina plays the ukulele, it expands what they can do frequency-wise. The ar­rangement of the high frequency of the ukulele and the low frequency of the guitar creates this different spec­trum and connects with people in a special way.

Band of Lovers is an acoustic duo that has a band to back them up. Not only are there the essential instruments like bass, guitar, and drums, but they added the string quartet from the Hud­son Orchestra to create a lusher sound for their debut album The Coast. They released their debut album on iTunes and BandCamp this Valentine’s Day and will begin a nationwide tour next spring and summer.

COURTESY OF PETER WEISS