Stargazer Lily

Stargazer Lily



It's a Sunday in October as Hope VanGogh (Stargazer Lily's big white touring van) hums past the strip malls, strip clubs, billboards and long shut-down taverns that make up Northeast Philly's gritty section of I-95 South. Rolling through the final stretch of road between New York City and home, Susan Rosetti (singer/songwriter/guitarist), Steph Hayes (singer/songwriter/guitarist), Scooter (drums), and their tiny entourage are either passed-out or sleepily staring out of the rainy windows waiting for their exit. Jim Miades (bassist and somewhat reluctant late night driver) turns up the radio a little more, hoping for a few final wake-up songs to get him the distance. The satisfaction of a good show played and the anticipation of releasing their new CD, Young Professionals, keeps the mood in the van electric regardless of the fact that it's four o'clock in the morning.

The band formed in 2000 after Rosetti and Hayes were signed to Arista while playing in another Philadelphia band called Cory. They traveled to LA for six weeks to work with industry hit-makers attempting to create the perfect radio gem. "I cried in the bathroom almost every single day," admits Hayes. Needless to say, they walked out of the situation with a renewed sense of identity. "We wanted to write our own radio gems or starve trying!" Hayes remarks. "And we certainly didn't want to be someone's cute little idiots. We wanted to be our own cute little rock n' roll idiots!"

So they decided to move on and put a band together. Recruiting Scooter (who had played drums with Cory for a stint) and adding Miades on bass, Stargazer Lily was complete.

To date the group has toured up and down the east coast. They have played on bills with The Dave Matthews Band, Shawn Mullins, and Michelle Malone. They've participated in numerous festivals including the Appel Farm Festival, and have been selected to play in music conferences such as SXSW, NYC's CMJ, Boston's NEMO and The Philadelphia Music Conference.

So what does Stargazer Lily sound like? Miades puts it like this: "You've heard the saying that the whole is greater than the sum if its parts?" "We all come from different musical backgrounds," adds Scooter, "but all of us enjoy the challenge of creating that perfect blend of verses, bridges and choruses to compliment the song." Susan chimes, "We love being able to be concise, smart, passionate, poignant, sexy, heart wrenching or downright ugly, and doing it all in a three-and-a-half-minute format." "It's like a tiny little audio movie," says Hayes.

Comparisons are tough..."we've gotten the Cranberries, the Neilds, Natalie Merchant, a more poppy Indigo Girls," says Rosetti. "Those are close, but I think we sound like 'us'", says Miades.

Young Professionals, released November 2004, makes you wonder what the band has gone through since 2002's The Lift and The Drag. The new record, whose working title was Lovesickened, runs love over the coals. From the dreamy, beat-box laden loops of 'Crush' to the brazen guitar blaze of 'Stay True' to the inviting 'Kiss Me' and the heartbreaking 'Nothing Is Useless', Young Professionals will take you from the first, blissful stages of love through the final acknowledgement of moving on.

The eleven tracks, seven of which were produced by The Lift and The Drag producer Phil Nicolo (Train, Pete Yorn, and Aerosmith) and four by Barrie Maguire (Natalie Merchant, Amos Lee) took a year to complete. It involved borrowing various studios, stealing a couple of musicians and inventing lots of day-job delaying excuses.

The title track is a tongue-in-cheek anthem to the people who get up and go to work every day -- something Stargazer Lily hopes they won't be doing much longer.

2005 saw the release of an album from Stargazer Lily's alt-country, alter-ego, Starlazer Gilly. 'Big In Texas' is produced by Grammy award-winner Phil Nicolo, and is a raucous hayride from start to finish - just as the Starlazer Gilly live sets always are! The CD is a collection of songs that have been a staple in the live sets throughout the years plus brand new songs, all of which have never been recorded...until now.


2000 - LP - "That's OK, I Can Sleep At Work"
2002 - LP - "The Lift And The Drag"
2004 - LP - "Young Professionals"
2005 - LP - Starlazer Gilly - "Big In Texas"