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San Antonio, Texas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2011 | SELF

San Antonio, Texas, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2011
Band Alternative Indie




"Your Monday Tobin Center Forecast: Purple Rain"

Fisherman gets to do the title track.

"We're going to do Purple Rain. You dream about playing with all the bells and whistles and the grandeur that you can get only by having an orchestra behind you, and a stage as prestigious as the Tobin Center."

This isn't the first time for Fisherman. They played in last year's Abbey Road project. He says you can anticipate their best effort. - TEXAS PUBLIC RADIO


Filmed during this year's MLK Day march (dubbed the biggest MLK march in the nation), the fishers of men perform a stripped down version of their feel good anthem "Fire Me Up." - SA CURRENT

"A 'Civil War Of The Soul' Drives San Antonio's Fishermen"

Talking to members of the San Antonio six-piece band fishermen, it’s clear the guys aren’t fooling around. Of all the groups that came to our studios this summer for our “Back 40” live music project, they’re the only ones that brought their manager along. That they even have a manager is also telling.
“When did we not need a manager?” jokes bass player Roy Scavone.

“We take [the music] pretty seriously,” adds lead singer and songwriter Edwin Stephens. “If you’re going to get organized, there’s got to be some kind of organizational structure. And if we’re going to be artists, we need the head space to be artists first, and to focus on making really good music. We need somebody else to wear the hat of making sure stuff gets done.” Good point.

That cleared head space and organization has led to an official double-EP release party on Sunday, September 6 at Sam’s Burger Joint. The CD will feature their soulful original songs, including “All My Love” and “Fire Me Up.”

That latter tune is representative of the group’s spiritual, socially and politically driven music. Musically, Stephens points to local artists like Buttercup and the Cartographers as inspiration; for the words, Stephens says he’s inspired by social justice, and figures like Martin Luther King, Jr., whose spirit is very much alive for Stephens. He even refers to King in present tense:

“In the face of oppression, in the face of injustice, he sees hate as the root of that injustice. He is so opposed to hate that he won’t contaminate his own mission with any sort of hate. He won’t use hate to defeat hate. Even though … his instinct is to fight back. But he’s seen this thing that is more beautiful, which is unconditional love.”

“I like to talk about civil rights and civil war—we have an EP called Civil War—I love peace and I love unity, so I like to pay attention to where you find that disrupted. [There’s] a battle that’s going on here,” Stephens says while pointing to his heart. “You have these two things in conflict. Ultimately one’s going to be the victor. It’s such layered imagery, but that’s exactly what ‘Fire Me Up’ is about.”

Other songs by fishermen are more spiritually driven, and indeed the group takes its name from the New Testament, and the story of Simon Peter and Andrew, fishermen who became “fishers of men” after following Jesus.

I remarked that there was a parallel there between the history behind their name and the message in their songs, and the group agreed.

You can hear the gospel of the fishermen online at their website and Bandcamp page, and in person at Sam’s Burger Joint on Sunday, September 6. - Texas Public Radio (TPR)

"Tradesmen of Sound, fishermen Fly High"

I first heard Fishermen in February last year at 502 Bar in the Northside when they were part of a three-band show for the Colleens album release party with a solo performance by San Antonio’s Erik Sanden (of Buttercup and Demitasse). Fishermen was the last band on the bill and I had no idea what to expect. I just knew people were definitely not leaving, and in fact the crowd might have been growing. Camera in hand, I waited for the band to take the stage.

I was impressed by their energy on stage, floored by the sound they produced, and most of all taken aback by their unique chemistry. Nobody had a role deemed less important, and the melodies brought to the table were essential for Fishermen’s hypnotizing sound.
After watching their set, I’ve had many great conversations centered around the expression of performance and the unwillingness to separate ones self from the lyrics of lead vocalist Edwin Stephens, formerly of Blowing Trees. When listening to Stephens’ voice it feels warm and familiar but paradoxically unlike anything you’ve heard before.

If you haven’t had the chance to listen, Fishermen will release their first official double EP “Future Wives” and “Smart Kids” at Sam’s Burger Joint on Sept. 6. The show will likely be an excellent introduction to a group of talented individuals whom I listen to on the regular. Doors open at 6 p.m. and The Last Nighters and Octahedron will open the show at 7 p.m.

Fishermen is the kind of band that is O.K. with taking a step back and taking a methodical approach to a series of songs that range from fast-paced bohemian sounds to a melodic keyboard driven ensemble that just makes your heart melt in a bowl. It’s hard to describe the genre that bellows out of Fishermen. It’s raw, yet clean with crisp vocals that allow the listener to lose themselves in a series of methodically curated and painstakingly assembled songs.
Most of Fishermen’s songs are written in San Antonio by Stephens. One of my favorite tracks “Circles and Squares” is about a painful break up. A portion of the song is about the insanity of unconditional love – when you love someone even when they’re hurting you, he said.

But the band has a philosophy and presence that goes beyond mortal relationships.

The name “Fishermen” was born out of the New Testament.

“Some of the disciples were fishermen,” Stephens said, adding that his band mates gravitated towards “the idea that they were tradesmen (common people).

“We’re tradesmen and followers at the same time,” he said.
“No matter what, we’re family. Ride or die. When you take on that kind of perspective it’s not always that romantic. At the end of the day we are brothers and we’re working in a family business together. We hash out our conflict and it comes up and we talk about it,” he said. “It’s really important for us to have that unity. If it’s not there we won’t just let it ride and keep it going, we address things as a group. Wether it’s a musical decision or creative decision or a relational decision we have to come together and fight for us and fight for it. All of our edges become sanded off and we become a smooth, cohesive unit.”

San Antonio is a city that is ours to keep. We get to witness the growth, experience the change, and focus on the future. San Antonio may not be as lucky as Fishermen who have the potential to surpass the growth and transform overnight. I just hope we can keep them for as long as we can. Today the band consists of six musicians who carry jobs ranging from window washing, delivery driving, and pouring coffee. Tomorrow they might become who they deserve to be: full-time fishermen. - The Rivard Report

"Live and Local: Colleens and fishermen at the 502"

It appears that music venues in San Anto exist on some sort of bipolar spectrum, with good sound and good vibe at opposite ends.

Where most of the neighbors on the St. Mary’s Strip have made various levels of sacrifice to achieve their vision of the Ideal Dive, the 502 Bar went the opposite way, swinging for truly bitchin’ audio, but at the expense of that grimy, rock club atmosphere. The choice resulted in what my girlfriend, who joined me last Friday at 502, called airport and bad bar mitzvah vibes.

But, to house their album release party, Colleens couldn’t have picked a better venue, packing the audiophilic 502 to showcase tracks from Wild Dreams, their self-released debut. The quintet ran through the album’s content with the ease and confidence of a young band celebrating their first record.

Slideshow: Colleens’ ‘Wild Dreams’ Release Party at the 502 Bar

“About You,” Wild Dreams’ first single, displayed brothers Josh and Jon Harter’s knack for pop songwriting, structured around an amiable guitar arpeggiation and a nice little hook. With a bed of keys, in-the-pocket drumming and the twang accent of electric slide riffs, Colleens’ Wilco-esque flannel rock captured the 502. That, and Ranger Creek’s specialty brew for the evening, an amber ale designed by brewer Holland Lawrence to specifically enhance the Colleens’ aesthetic—wish I could tell you how the peachy brew tasted, but the tap ran dry long before my arrival.

As a young band, Colleens seem to struggle with the common challenge of rising above their influences, shedding their discipleship of Let It Be-era Beatles (complete with a solid “Get Back” cover) and a Yankee Hotel Foxtrot attitude for something more purely individual, a particular and unsealed twist on the artists in their record collection. Though the material on Wild Dreams offers a promise of notable work to come, Colleens are currently stuck in Kings-of Leon-lite mode, a quintet worth checking out only as second billing.
Hustling their equipment—including a badass, cumbersome and vintage Fender Rhodes—onto the stage to entice the attention of the night-owl crowd, Fishermen began their thing around 1:20 a.m. Where Colleens channeled late-era Beatles, Fishermen looked to a different pop archetype, settling into an expansive rendition of Prince’s “Purple Rain” to shift the evening’s energy.

Undoubtedly, Fishermen’s strongest asset is singer Edwin Stephens’ voice, a floating instrument with supreme command over the upper register and an on-point falsetto. Atop the involved and well-orchestrated landscape laid down by guitarist Eli Medina, keyboardist Omar Rosel, bassist Roy Scavone and drummer Jeremy Dowd, providing rhythmic counterpoint, Fishermen offer one of SA’s best live sets.

Towards the end of the evening, after Fishermen proved the merit of their Dave Matthews meets Grizzly Bear aesthetic, after their extended and excellent “Orbs,” and after the enduringly bizarre spectacle of the Olympics opening ceremony broadcast on the wall, I couldn’t help but feel that the evening—despite some of the more critical words employed here—came together as intended. There’s a reason the 502 aimed for audio integrity over attitude, and a damn good one at that. Bands (like Colleens and Fishermen) that don’t need to hide behind a wall of reverb, seek out the 502 to display their oeuvre as intended. And the audience, looking for a good time in a Clean, Well-Lighted Place with Bangin’ Speakers, responds quite nicely. - San Antonio Current


Storytelling and placemaking help cultivate artists’ identity like nothing else. In today’s digital world, it is perhaps even more important due to the lack of liner notes and other physical media which bring audiences closer to the artists they love.

Through the video production skills of Nick Mery, fishermen introduce us to the bigger picture. We are given insight through glimpses of the writing process, performing around town and being actively apart of the local community. Part of the significance of fishermen, aside from their individual and collective musical talents, is the ability to craft a narrative surrounding their band. We can relate to these guys because we see them inside the places we go, doing the things we all regularly do - yet, they maintain that sublime mystique.
Releasing two EPs simultaneously instead of 1 full length record, makes a lot of sense for fishermen. Their members’ influences are incredibly varied and their songs evade easy categorization, so breaking the release into two distinct EPs actually helps us to digest this ambitious piece of work.

The first two singles off Future Wives and Smart Kids, "Fire Me Up" and "All My Love", are two very different sounding songs, but still sound like they came from the same band. "Fire Me Up" begins with a distorted & muted guitar hook that sets the tone for the massive sound of the song and "All My Love" carries the R&B, soulful vocals with ambient atmospheres and a good beat. - Sobre Sound



Blending contemporary indie aesthetic with classic soul and rock, fishermen boast both lofty and eclectic influences, drawing from timeless giants like Radiohead, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, Marvin Gaye and more. They have been described as “Highly inventive and dreamy…” by Hector Saldana of the San Antonio Express News and were referred to as “one of SA’s best live sets” by Matthew Steib of the San Antonio Current. 

The two founding members of fishermen, Roy Scavone and Edwin J. Stephens, both hail from the local indie-alternative legend, Blowing Trees. Following their record deal with Glassnote Records (Phoenix, Mumford and Sons) and mild commercial success that included music and videos on MTV and MTV2, Stephens found himself inspired to use the songwriting skills he had gleaned working with Trees frontman Chris Maddin to begin crafting his own catalogue of soulful pop and alternative songs. While the rest of the indie world was rediscovering the lush arrangements and pop brilliance of the Beach Boys Pet Sounds, Edwin was taken back by the psychedelic side of Motown explored in Marvin Gay’s classic, What’s Goin’ On, an album that had influenced him since childhood and that he thought equaled Pet Sounds in terms of pop savviness, unique arrangements and gorgeous harmonies. More so, Marvin Gay’s work had a political and social dimension to it lyrically that Stephens, an avid fan of Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement, could connect with.

Over the next 5 years, Stephens and Scavone would find themselves joined by an outstanding group of young men, hailing from in and around the San Antonio area, working together to simultaneously hone, and discover a sound that is authentic, soulful, gritty, delicate, contemporary and timeless all at once. Jeremy Dowd (drums), Eli Medina (guitar/vox), Omar Rosel (guitar/keys/aux/vox) Gabriel Medina (keys/vox) along with Roy Edmund Scavon (bass) and Edwin J. Stephens (guitars/vox), have struggled hard amidst the resource barren landscape of the San Antonio music economy to craft songs that accurately reflect, yet impact rather than regurgitates culture while telling their story. They are artists. They are real. They are family.

Band Members