The Heavy Craigs, appropriately named since they were brought together by the force known as Craigslist over the course of two years. Guitarists Tim Samples and Chuck Fusca originally played cover songs on stage together, but their repertoire soon included over forty original songs. Drawing from diverse influences including Beatles-style pop, classic rock, alternative, and folk, their sound is broadly appealing with an energetic rock edge.
Who are The Heavy Craigs?
Chuck: I sing and play rhythm guitar. Tim Samples is on lead guitar and sings too. Jason Isla is our hand percussionist and he also sings some lead and harmony vocals. David Swanson here plays a mean bass and sings, and Alex Guzman, our newest addition, plays drums.
How did you come upon the name ‘The Heavy Craigs?
Chuck: Well, we all met in one way or another through Craigslist. Whether it was the various bands we were in together or just the ads we placed, there was always a “Craigslist connection.”
Is there a particular artist that first inspired you to start playing music as individuals?
Chuck: For me it was definitely the Beatles. I wanted to be John Lennon when I was 6 years old. As I got older, there were tons of musicians that inspired me like Dylan, The Samples, The Smiths, and Radiohead to name a few but The Beatles have always been the constant. You can definitely hear their inspiration in our harmonies.
David: I had a lot of influences, but ultimately it was Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Victor Wooten from the Flecktones that inspired me to start playing bass.
Which artist/producer would be a dream collaboration for the band?
Chuck: When it comes to collaboration, I’d say anyone, really. I think our music is approachable enough to be infused by any other type of music. Jason brings a lot of musical perspectives from Africa and Latin America with his percussion and anything like that would be awesome. My personal dream would be to have someone like Branford Marsalis play sax on a live tune. That would signal to me we’ve made it.
David: I agree, I think the most memorable collaborations blend different instruments or genres. A lot of our songs were actually written on piano, so maybe somebody like Alicia Keys or Ben Folds.
How would you describe the sound of your CD?
David: It’s melodic progressive rock. I feel like there is a 70’s influence to a lot of what we do, like some of the vocal melodies and guitar tones, but I think we successfully shy away from all of the classic rock clichés for a sound that’s fresh and contemporary. A lot of the songs avoid the classic verse, chorus, verse structure for something more epic and climactic. Others, like Keys Too, have a catchy hook, but none of them are really formulaic.
Chuck: Yeah, the tunes start pretty simple and then as everyone in the band adds their flavor, they become something else. Everyone has different influences so it’s hard to describe but I’d say the melody and groove is what will stand out when you listen to our music.
Do you have a favorite song that you’ve covered?
Chuck: we really don’t do too many covers. I think maybe two or three. Hard Sun by Indio and a Bob Marley tune I think may be it right now but that always changes. The originals are a lot more exciting to me right now. I think I’d like to see us try to tackle some Public Enemy. Oh, we did do a little Beastie Boys the other night too.
David: Most of our covers are pretty spontaneous and short-lived. We threw in a special cover for our Mayan apocalypse show just after midnight on December 21, 2012. I think the Beastie Boys song was inspired on the spot by a fan’s ring tone. We have plenty of material, so we just use covers to spice up the live shows.
What would you like to say to our reader’s?
Chuck: Just to ‘like’ us on facebook so you can see when we’re playing and then come check out one of our shows. I can promise our music won’t offend you and if we do our job right, you may just get a tune or two stuck in your head.
David: Stay in school. Read a book at least twice a year. Take care of yourselves and each other. And for God’s sake, brush your teeth. I shouldn’t have to be the one telling you this stuff.
You can check out these Guy’s on March, 9th at The West End Trading Co. in Sanford for a raw acoustic set. And Now scroll over to Facebook and give the band a like https://www.facebook.com/TheHeavyCraigs then share it and tell your friends to ‘like’!