(June 04, 2012)
Sitting over a casual cup of coffee and blueberry muffin in downtown Asheville, Silas Durocher enthusiastically discusses his latest project, Lovestruck Suckers. His excitement for the band is evident as he expresses his pleasure in providing “emotional movement” for his fans.
As an Asheville-based guitarist, singer, songwriter, and composer, Silas is excited about the Lovestruck Suckers and its diversity from his usual compositions because he feels that, as a musician, he should always push new projects and try different things, not only for the audience but also for himself.
Lovestruck Suckers consists of three members of the Opal String Quartet. Silas is on vocals and guitar and is supported by Amy Lovinger (violin), Kara Poorbaugh (viola), and Franklin Keel (cello).
In addition to Lovestruck Suckers, Silas is currently involved with the Get Right Band, described by Silas as an “ass shakin’ good time.” The Get Right Band has a substantially different sound than Lovestruck Suckers, playing more rock n’ roll and funk than singer-songwriter.
Growing up influenced by the rock bands of the mid 1990s provided Silas with his background and love for rock music but throughout college he ventured into the world of classical composition. “Classical music is a means to an end,” Silas says. Through learning classical composition he learned the basis of how to write music he truly loves.
Silas has been avidly playing music since he was 12, when he accidentally came across his dad’s college guitar, stumping his toe on the case in the basement. Humorously describing the scenario, Silas says the first time he strummed a guitar “the skies parted and rays of sunshine came down, and it was quite immediate that that was what I was doing for the rest of my life.”
The name of the band almost tells all there is to know about the Lovestruck Suckers in itself. The music is intended to provide a spokesperson to universal emotion, with deep roots in heart-wrenching stories of love, heartbreak, and seeking beauty in a broken world through a fusion of classical composition and classic rock. Silas says the name is meant to help find a little comedy and bring a light-hearted vibe to some serious human emotion, and that shows the motivation behind his work all on its own.
All of Lovestruck Suckers’ music is written by Silas, whose history as a classical composer and rock guitarist has influenced the fusion of these seemingly disparate works.
Jeff Whitworth, sole proprietor and talent buyer at The Grey Eagle, gives a summary of the Lovestruck Suckers’ premiere at the Grey Eagle in January of 2012. “The banter was witty, the songs were great, and the performance was spot on,” Jeff says. “It was one of those magical nights where everyone in attendance was there for the same reason, the right reason, the music.” Jeff says the audience was captivated from the first note.
Jeff, who has known Silas through his previous projects, says that while watching him lead the Lovestruck Suckers he “saw him as a songwriter and singer, a conductor, and most impressively as a band leader. Watching their sound check was almost like watching a symphony rehearse, but rather than a conductor waving a baton to provide direction to his cast, Silas was waving a guitar.”
The June 9 performance at the Altamont Theatre is just the second public performance for the group. Silas says he has no set expectations for the show and adds that people may come and be able to enjoy the show purely on a musical level, but he hopes fans come with open hearts to “experience an emotional ride throughout the evening.”