BIG TIME
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BIG TIME

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Big Time: A Profile
By Eva Williams

April 2009

We are familiar with the concept of the superhero: they walk among us in the "Average Joe" disguise. They could be a rich billionaire, a journalist, or the simple college student. Either way, no one suspects that there is anything extraordinary about them, yet they save the world and continue to live their lives in disguise, never really basking in their own glory. Society is not to learn their identity. However, Spiderman's true identity was discovered by a train full of people. Then, there's Tony Stark who bluntly revealed to the press that he was indeed Iron Man. Now, we are in the midst of uncovering the true identity of the superhero force saving the world, or at least Harvard, from bad tunes and giving us something to really rock out to. No longer will they walk among the students of Harvard College unnoticed. They are Big Time.
Superheroes Are Made

Big Time was not always a force of four but started off small. The two original members, Steven Duque and Andrew Livingston, worked together recording and writing for quite some time. Then, after being accepted into a Battle of the Bands contest, the two realized that they needed two more members to complete this super troop. They met Tyler Hall as he was punching a few clubs and, although he did not end up in those clubs, he landed a spot in their band. Jacob Benson met the band through a mutual friend. So, Steven, Andrew, Tyler, and Jacob, with great chemistry, yielded the product of Big Time.

Big Time Powers Unite!

Every member has their own power. Steve possesses the power of vocals and has a guitar that he is never afraid to use. Andrew is lethal with his guitar and he destroys all of his musical nemeses. Tyler rocks out on the bass while Jacob blows people away on the drums. While every member contributes original work, Steve and Andrew work hard to compose the music and lyrics. Andrew is responsible for the instruments and the sound while Steve handles the vocals.

The Superhero Hideout

Of course this band of superheroes has a hideout where they get together and perfect their skills. They can often be found at the SOCH or the Fly working on their music and perfecting their powers.

Every Superhero Has A Disguise

For now the boys are busy trying to maintain their secret identities as Harvard students, but they each previously had multiple disguises. Some of them still do. For example, Andrew spent a year studying at a music conservatory while Steve wrote for a newspaper (Clark Kent anyone?). Jacob spent a year editing a political blog while Tyler runs 'On Harvard Time' and has been extremely involved in Hasty Pudding Theatricals tech.

Superheroes Need Inspiration Too

While this band possesses the power of rock, their influences come from various fields of music including everything from classic rock (Steely Dan, the Beatles, Led Zeppelin) to experimental (Gorecki, Ligeti, Cage). Andrew explains, "Jazz informs my writing to a large extent—not so much with traditional jazz harmonies and melodies, but rather with the rawness of emotion and 'groove' that defines the genre."

Behind Every Superhero Rock Star is a Rockin'… Chick Anthem?

Every guy has a chick song that they rock out to! For Andrew, it's Britney Spears's "Circus." Tyler likes Khia's "My Neck, My Back." And Steven is into Mariah Carey's "Always Be My Baby." Finally, Jacob can't get enough of Britney Spears's "Womanizer."

Every Superman Needs a Superwoman

Andrew seems as though he has already found his: he described his dream superwoman to look exactly like his girlfriend and have the same sense of humor. Steven is looking for a girl who loves to chill and have a good time (yes ladies, he's single!). Steven says that he likes "intelligent, compassionate women who are genuinely passionate about something and have a good sense of humor. There isn't really one body type that I prefer; different aspects of a woman's figure can be incredibly sexy, if she carries herself the right way."

The Power of Charm

All of the guys claim to have been inspired by a girl when it comes to their music. Andrew claims to have definitely been influenced by a special lady and Steven agrees saying that relationships and women have helped inspire his own writing. Tyler says that "every time I write a bass line it is an ode to a different woman I have loved, a four to six note ode repeated over and over again."

Superhero Powers at Work

As of now, the band has a 5 song demo EP recorded which has gotten awesome reviews. Earlier this month, the band went back to the studio, Cybersound, where they are currently recording new tracks. They have a lot of new songs which, as Steven says, "capture different aspects of our musical versatility." In addition, Steven is featured on the album of an up-and-coming hip hop artist, Jesse James, whose album will also have a guest appearance by the rapper, The Game. Steven states, "It's kind of random, but great that we can get Big Time exposed across different genres."

Superheroes Have Plans As Well

"This summer, we're touring. After that, who knows? As I've been nearing graduation, I've been thinking more and more that I've got one life to live, and there isn't a whole lot of time to do all the things I want to do. There are a few options on the table right now, and being a rock star would be pretty sweet," says Steven. After graduation, Andrew would like to continue playing and composing music. - Harvard Freeze Magazine


"Interlude: Introducing Big Time", March 12, 2009

Sometimes getting up in the morning isn’t easy. Daylight savings this year, coming early, seems to hit harder. It also isn’t easy bringing a band together, to try and make something, to rage against the dying of the light. Four philosophy students at Harvard are trying to do just that, and they call themselves Big Time, a name that started out as a tongue-in-cheek reference to their status as college students come together as a garage band. But the name has come to reflect their major, where Time carries a capital T and has connotations of its own.

Big Time is Steven Duque on vocals and guitar, Andy Livingston on guitar, Jacob Benson on drums and Tyler Hall on bass. They’ve recorded a number of tracks with engineer Jeremy Page at Cybersound Studios in Boston, and are facing that difficult day post-graduation where they will have to chose a path. This early batch of songs could be their compass. Though they are currently still trying to decode their musical DNA, an identity is already visible in this track. Duque has a distinctive voice that can do interesting things. As his writing develops, I am sure the band’s sound will cohere and that they will find a comfort zone that suits their various styles and gives them a more refined identity. They say their influences are mainly indie (Radiohead, Wrens, Wolf Parade, Modest Mouse, Arcade Fire and… The Beatles). The sound of this track has a bit more “polish” on it I’d say, but the frame of the house is strong. They”ll get stronger as their finish carpentry skills improve.

Big Time recorded four tracks and possess several other songs in their live-act quiver, and have hinted that they may want to add a keyboardist to provide some “instrumental linkage from song to song,” in the words of Livingston. They have a lot of choices to make, some simple and some difficult, but a good place to get to if they travel with care. - Hallock Hill: Someplace about music


Posted on April 29, 2009 by David Harris
Filed Under Harvard University, Music

Bands that get their start at Ivy League schools aren’t that uncommon these days — think Chester French (Harvard) or Vampire Weekend (Columbia). So it doesn’t come as much of a suprise that there’s another band bubbling in the epicenter of the Ivies — this time in Crimson-land. Big Time is composed of three Harvard students: Andrew Livingston, Steven Duque and Logan Pritchard (shown above). And they actually make pretty sweet music together (they even mention good ol’ Cambridge in one song). - Cantabridgia Blog of Cambridge Chronicle


Discography

Big Time Demo EP

Photos

Bio

THE BAND

As philosophy students at Harvard, Steven Duque and Andrew Livingston both yearn The ed for something more than the world of suits & ties. Starting freshman year, they jammed on their guitars, talked extensively about life and pondered the future. Friends Nathan Eberhart, Logan Pritchard and William Magid join the band on bass, drums and keys & sounds, respectively.

STEVEN DUQUE

Born and raised in Houston, Texas, the son two Filipino immigrants, Steven Duque began playing piano at age four. At twelve, he began playing the bagpipes. Soon afterward, he taught himself how to play guitar from his mother’s old guitar magazines. From the moment Steven picked up the guitar, he began writing songs, singing as front man of an art-rock band in high school. Influenced by his mother’s love of folk music and pop, Steven’s songwriting reflects his upbringing and penchant for indie and art rock.

ANDREW LIVINGSTON

AndrewLivingston grew up in Palo Alto, California, and began composing music as soon as his little infant brain figured out that pressing piano keys produced noise. Andrew began with piano lessons, progressed to various woodwind instruments and eventually settled down with the guitar around age fifteen. His formal guitar studies have focused on jazz theory, with an emphasis on incorporating jazz harmony into rock and pop music.

LOGAN PRITCHARD

Logan Pritchard, born in Toronto, Canada, picked up his first pair of hickory sticks in the 5th grade and has since drummed on most household surfaces and strangers in his vicinity. He blames his overdeveloped right foot on his Zeppelin LPs, though he attributes most of his sound to prog rock drummers Carl Palmer and Bill Bruford. The young’un of the band, Logan currently studies the neuroscience of economics at Harvard College. When he’s not trying to live up to his lumberjack heritage, he plays rugby and travels to the farthest reaches of the world.

NATHAN EBERHART

Nathan Eberhart grew up in Palo Alto, California, with Andrew and William. At thirteen, Nathan started a deep rhythm and blues band. As a musician, he takes his influences from a wide array of musical languages — from jazz to noise and, of course, rock ‘n roll. Nathan attended Berkeley, lived in Europe, worked as a journalist, got some degrees, and kept playing music. Now, he’s out East, embarking on a wild musical journey with his friends.

WILLIAM MAGID

William Magid grew up in Palo Alto, attending the rival high school of Nathan and Andrew. His earliest music-related memory is performing an improvised Casio keyboard concert for his kindergarten show-and-tell. He first met Nathan and Andrew in high school after playing trumpet with Nathan’s band. While studying Ethnomusicology at UCLA, William traveled the world playing trumpet with blues legend Solomon Burke and The Ramblers, a Ghanaian band. William also works on a side project called Pangea Collective. When not playing music, he can be seen sipping tea.