Simple Folk

Bad Weather California whittles indie pop down to the basics.

Adolf agrees: "When we're on tour, it's tough, 'cause we're such shy people. It's better to get the crowd singing along; that way, they're basically playing with you."

"Or maybe they're just singing along out of pity," adds Wood with a laugh.

Adolf, though, sees an even deeper idea behind the lifting of a collective voice. "We really like the whole tradition of folk music, the idea that music is for the people," he says. "The people meaning everybody, not just music lovers."

Love letters in the band: Marisa Wood and Chris Adolf 
of Bad Weather California.
Anthony Camera
Love letters in the band: Marisa Wood and Chris Adolf of Bad Weather California.

"It's like getting back to the roots of folk music, when people just sat around and sang songs instead of playing in a sold-out auditorium," says Wood.

"A lot of times you go to an indie-rock show, and it's packed, but no one's really there to see a show. They're there to be seen, instead. I'd rather play in a closet with four people who are into it," expounds Adolf. "I like the idea of playing music everyone can get -- not just indie rockers, but office workers and schoolteachers and football players. That's the whole idea of pop music. I mean, I love noisy and harsh and experimental music -- stuff that's really pushing the envelope -- but maybe another envelope to push is playing shows that your aunt and uncle would go to."

Envelopes. They're like the skins of letters: Peel them back and you'll find raw flesh, bare nerves and beating hearts. For the couple formerly known as the Love Letter Band, there is no higher purpose than sending yourself halfway across the country to open up and spill your guts out to the crowd.

"We don't want to pay rent. We want to be bums," declares Wood.

"Yeah, Jack Kerouac style," says Adolf. "We just love driving around and playing songs for people."

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