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The best kept secret in music


"Interstate launches CD,hits the road"

Friday, July 23, 2004

Some local musicians are putting it all on the line to make a name for their band.

The members of Interstate have just released a CD called “Seventh Avenue At Midnight,” and are in the midst of a tour that will take them around California and to Las Vegas

The band members have all had success in previous careers, and two have left good jobs to dedicate themselves to their music.

Jeff Nunes, 32, originally from San Martin, was a successful lawyer in Phoenix until he quit to pursue music. The band leader, Nunes wrote the first songs that created the Interstate sound. He is the lead vocalist, plays acoustic and classical guitar, and the piano.

Scotty Thomas, 28, from Gilroy, who plays the several instruments, writes songs and sings, recently resigned from his post as general sales manager for a local business.

The Dixon brothers, Darin “Berle,” 32, and Dan, 35, are from Gilroy. Dan is a successful local real estate professional and Berle recently left Cisco Systems where he enjoyed success as a sales representative. Dan Dixon plays the drums and Berle Dixon plays the bass guitar and sings. Now Berle Dixon, Thomas and Nunes are pursuing music full-time.

All the band members have years of experience in music. The Dixon brothers began performing on stage with their father when they each were very young. Nunes started playing classical guitar at age 6 and writing songs at age 9. All have been performing in clubs and theaters since their high school days.

Nunes and the Dixons have been playing music together since high school, and when they decided to get serious about their music, they recruited Thomas, who, as Berle Dixon said, “put wind under our wings.”

Support from family has been key to the group, as some of the members chose to leave six-figure incomes for the band.

“My wife is thrilled that I am finally pursuing my dream,” Nunes said.

His wife Sarah added “I really believe in him.”

The same is true for Berle and his wife Tina, who said she backs her husband completely.

“I enjoyed high tech, but I really believe in our music” Berle said.

The sentiment is echoed by Chris, Dan’s wife of three years. Thomas, the only bachelor in the group, said his family has given him full support.

At a recent show at The Claddagh Restaurant in Gilroy, the band played a variety of songs from the heart-felt “This Time Around”, written by Nunes to his wife “after emerging from dark days,” to “Stand” - a song with a political twist. From soulful lyrics to thundering drums, the music compelled audience members to get up and dance.

The audience appreciated the band’s energy.

“I like their attitude, their music,” said Shawn Gordon, an electrician from Hollister.

Nelia Luis of San Jose agreed.

“They are hot!” she said.

The band has a number of shows coming up.

Interstate was one of 20 bands chosen out of 500 to play at the New York International Music Festival, a musical counterpart to the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival, happening today, and they will be headlining at San Francisco’s The Great American Music Hall Sept. 1.

The band also won honorable mentions for their songs “This Time Around” and “My Shade of Blue” at the International Songwriting Competition.

And “This Time Around” has been popular on a radio station in Minnesota after the station found their Web site and asked for a CD.

The band’s new CD “Seventh Avenue At Midnight,” is out today and available at Barnes & Noble stores, and - The Gilroy Dispatch,Morgan Hill Times

"Interstate named BEST Alternative Rock Band of the 2004 New York International Music Festival"

The New York International Music Festival is proud to announce "Interstate" as the BEST Alternative Rock Band of the New York International Music Festival held at The Palms Casino & Hotel in Las Vegas,Nevada.
July 20 - 27, 2004
- 2004 New York International Music Festival


Seventh Avenue At Midnight - 2004
Currently Recording CD # 2


Feeling a bit camera shy


Interstate’s bold melodies and biting lyrics offer the rare combination of classic rock style, Americana grit, and modern pop/rock sense for an eclectic blend that is fresh, relentless, and unmatched.

Hailing from the South Bay Area, the genesis of Interstate came when local guitarist JW Nunes had a chance encounter with the Dixon brothers. At the time, Nunes was an accomplished guitarist, having performed in local clubs and restaurants as a soloist since the age of 14. Unbeknownst to him, the Dixon brothers shared an extensive musical history. Emulating their musical father, the brothers had been performing at variety shows, schools, and festivals from an early age. As with most bands, their impromptu first session evolved into something much more. When JW Nunes took a chance and revealed one of his songs, “Sweet Little Sixteen” to the brothers, the interstate sound was born.

With their debut album, Seventh Avenue at Midnight, on independent label LytninBoy Records, Interstate offers a symphonic guitar driven album that is played as if their lives depended on it. The searing guitar lines and soulful belts of JW Nunes, the sweet lushful bass tones of Berle Dixon, the masterful thunderings from Dan Dixon, Interstate creates a sound that delivers something for everyone yet compromises for no one. And whether exploring the restless longing of “Playing the Fool”, the poisoned protest of “Stand”, the self interrogation of “Hole in My Faith” or the neon-lit epic of “Madtown”, the lyrics speak – often examining and introspective, sometimes haunting and brutally honest, but always - true.