Local Limelight: Q&A with Todd Hoover

 by Zach Richter
 published on Thursday, February 2, 2006

Photo courtesy of the January Taxi

Todd Hoover wants to touch you.

Not in any way that will get him arrested; but in a way that will make you say, "Wow, I'm touched...cool."

Hoover is a musician, and the 440 friends he has on Myspace.com seem to think he is a good one.

You can see for yourself because Todd Hoover and the Invisible Teal is releasing its self-titled debut album on Feb. 7.

This might be the group's first album together, but Hoover's no stranger to the Valley scene. He played in a band called Company Drive from April to July of 2003. His first solo album, One Day at a Time and No Alternatives, was released in 2004.

Last spring he was playing solo when he met violist Susan Dodson and everything just fell into place.

Todd Hoover and the Invisible Teal formed in March 2005, adding Zach Burba on drums, Taryn Hoover on backup vocals and Tristan Jemsek on bass.

SPM: Why did you decide to form the Invisible Teal?:

Hoover: I went though an egotistical period where I didn't want to deal with playing with other people. I basically got to a point where I realized that I needed backing for my songs.

SPM: Several of the venues that you have played at have closed. Do you consider yourself a jinx?:

Hoover: I really hope that I'm not a jinx. The Sonoran Coffee Company had a bad location. And we played there every Friday. If you play the same place every Friday, people get burned out. We stopped playing and a week later the place closed down. That's a lot of guilt obviously. If I am a jinx I want to apologize to any venue we shut down

SPM: What is your opinion of the local scene?:

Hoover: It's just not a place where people make it from, except Jimmy Eat World, Authority Zero and The Format. There is so much more that is so much better than that. We could do worse. At least we are not like Wyoming or something.

SPM: How was it recording this album? Was it better or worse than your previous albums?:

Hoover: I liked it better than One Day at a Time and No Alternatives. Pat Driscoll [the producer] and I went to church together years ago. We lost touch but we met [again] at a wedding, and I heard that he had a recording studio. We ended up recording the album in 10 hours and we mixed it in about three.

SPM: When describing your new CD on your website you used the words "thoughtful and moving," what do these words mean to you?:

Hoover: To me, "moving" means that I put passion and myself into my songs. It is sometimes hard to sing because they are so personal. It's cathartic, without out it I would probably go insane. "Thoughtful" means I put more effort into my lyrics. In some circumstances it will take me between a month and a year to finish a song. I try and make my songs as good as they can be.

SPM: Where do you see yourself in a year?

Hoover: It is kind of up in the air right now. I'd like to record a second CD; I hope it's with the same people. Whatever happens, I see myself making music. As long as people want to hear it, I'll be happy.

Reach the reporter at zachary.richter@asu.edu.



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