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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

In the midst of endless touring, Papadosio talks Rootwire and Radiohead

Though many would define Papadosio as a jam band, their sound is a melting pot of different genres and influences with each band member coming from a different musical background.

“I started out listening to all the music my dad would play for me which is like a lot of Steely Dan and Yes,” said Sam Brouse, Papadosio’s  keyboard player.  “But the first thing I really had an obsession about was, and is to this day, Radiohead.”  

Furthermore, while the band is often categorized as a jam band, Brouse himself never really listened to jam bands.

“I’ve never even, still to this day, listened to any jam band music my whole life,” said Brouse.  

This background, removed from the jam band world, works as a blessing for the band as Brouse places a strong emphasis on song writing and the creation of albums—something most jam bands consider as an afterthought to their live show.

And it’s on the band’s latest album, To End the Illusion of Separation—which came out in 2012—where Papadosio really demonstrates this strength.

Whereas many jam bands are content to throw a half-dozen or so songs on tape and release it to the world, Papadosio moved in an entirely different direction, choosing to release a 20-song album with little in the way of filler.

“I think it came from a lot of what I was just talking about, bands that we admire have always made albums that speak by themselves,” said Brouse.  “It doesn’t have to be about what our band is.”  

Additionally, part of the drive to make this record was the addition of Brouse, who joined in 2010, and his presence in the studio on To End the Illusion of Separation.

“I was chomping at the bit to record some of my songs, and then I’ve also been touring with songs from that album for like two years,” said Brouse.  “Basically, we just wanted to see what we could accomplish.”

But as much as Brouse is proud of their studio work, one is hard-pressed to look past their relentless touring schedule. The band has traipsed across the country and back numerous times. Some places, however, stand out amongst their hundreds of dates a year.

“Every place has its unique stuff that’s really cool about it,” said Brouse. “But my favorite places to be are Colorado and Richmond, Va.  I really like it everywhere, depending on how tired I am.”

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The band has three big events each year to look forward to: Rootwire Music & Arts Festival (a festival that the band put together themselves), their two-night Earth Night celebration in Columbus, Ohio and a New Years Eve gig.

“It is really special and really amazing that all of those people are there [at Rootwire],” Brouse said.  “It’s nice, coming from a summer full of festivals that aren’t ours and we don’t have control over.”

But New Years Eve, despite being a mainstay of the band’s calendar, is not Brouse’s favorite show of the year.

“I mean, obviously everybody just wants to fucking party,” said Brouse.  “I like playing New Years, but I like more playing shows where people don’t necessarily expect it.”

With the band being on the road for so much of the year, Brouse also enjoys exploring all the wonders of local cuisine across the country.

“I have thought so many times about starting a food blog about eating on the road,” Brouse said.  “We were just in Portland, Maine for the first time and had some pretty killer clam chowder.  But my favorite experience eating is probably the first time I had jumbalaya in New Orleans.”

Amidst their relentless touring schedule, the band always enjoys coming back into Madison.

“It’s different every time, but I like Madison,” said Brouse.  “It’s an awesome town, and no matter what the weather is, people are coming out … there’s never been a dead crowd.”

Papadosio is set to play the Majestic Theater with support from Earthcry at 9 p.m., Oct. 10.

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