Treys Parade
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Treys Parade


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The best kept secret in music


"Don't Rain on Trey's Parade"

Don't rain on Trey's Parade
UHM student a new face in chick rock
Spencer Kealamakia
Ka Leo Staff Writer
Issue date: 4/19/06 Section: Features

Freedom from school will come three years prematurely for Theresa Houston. There will be no stupid-looking hat or a diploma. There will be no ceremony. Houston, a freshman at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, will be trading in her books for a guitar and adopting a new kind of schedule as she takes her musical project, Trey's Parade, on the road.

The past school year has been a productive one for Houston. Not only will she finish off the year with a set of transcripts, but she will also have completed her first album, entitled "Parlay," an album she wrote entirely, and on which she played all the instruments. Originally an art major, plans changed for the South Dakota native upon arriving in Hawai'i.

"I suddenly became obsessed with music when I started going to school here, which kinda skewed everything," said Houston. "It made me change my point of view of what I wanted to do with my life."
At the behest of friends who recognized her talent, Houston went to work in her dorm room and wrote the Parlay album in the fall of 2005, and then went on to record it over the winter break. Though she had four years of previous musical experience, it was her first endeavor in songwriting.

Upon listening to the album, one can expect cliché pop-rock, as Theresa put it, but the nuances between songs offer something for everyone. Songs like "Mary," in which a rude distorted guitar riff collides with Houston's sassy snarl, are a far cry from the acoustic sentimental crooning on tracks like "Little Miss Apathy." Stylistic differences aside, the album maintains a cohesiveness all its own.

"One of the songs is modeled completely after the way Weezer writes their songs, and another song is modeled completely after how The Rocket Summer writes their songs," Houston said.

Houston's statement is interesting, as many artists don't make mention of other artists they, sometimes blatantly, model their work after. But with Houston there is no insecurity.

"I just studied a bunch of cliché bands that people like ... I think that's the best way ... I'm going to school," she quips.

In addition to Houston's lighthearted honesty about her musical models, the down-to-earth songstress is also frank about her thoughts on, as she puts it, "the cliché world of female musicians." Aside from issues involving the rote use of standard chords by women, the roles females resign themselves to within the music world frustrate Houston even more.

Regarding women musicians, Houston says, "they take on their femininity as their power source ... It's not bad, it's just overdone."
Houston expounds on the lack of risks women take in music; the way most women stick to songs of love and songs which are naturally suited to the soft and melodic qualities of female vocalists.

Houston performed at UHM's Battle of the Bands last week, fronting her band - hair and guitar flailing - to the screams and cheers of an admiring crowd. There was nothing intrinsically feminine or masculine about her performance. It was simply Theresa and her music.
In speaking of her future as a musician, Houston's wishes are demandingly simple: "As long as I'm playing music, performing music, and I'm involved in the writing, that's fine with me."

If you didn't get the chance to see Trey's Parade at the Battle of the Bands, the band will be playing on Saturday, April 22 at Detox with a host of other bands. The 18+ show begins at 9 p.m. with a $5 cover. It will be the last opportunity to see them before they head off to the mainland.

For more information on the band, visit
- Ka Leo O Hawai'i Press

"Trey's Parade"

Trey's Parade
Powerpop / Rock / Indie
Honolulu, HI

Write Up::
N/A :: Theresa Houston has left the University of Hawaii. If you were interested in knowing her, you’ve lost your chance at doing so in a natural way.

Theresa is the type of girl who will tell you that she plays keytar simply because it is “the most awesome instrument in the world.” She is also the type of girl who knows what she’s in for if music will be the rest of her life.

Her music is ready. That’s the best way to describe it. It reaches into several different corners of genre but keeps its feet to its morals. There are several bouts with clean pop music, but, like most female singers with a message, comes down to that one acoustic (or nearly acoustic as the case may be) number about all of the secrets in their universe.

Theresa says she doesn’t really listen to music, though. She used to, but that’s a far off thought now that her efforts are being focused on helping her friend Nic Westlake tour the American Continent with his band, The Blinking Project.

After making a pact with her friend Nick, Theresa found herself picking up life and moving back to South Dakota to begin her career as a musician.

“We made a pact, me and my friend Nick,” said Houston. “Whoever made it first would abandon their own project and help the other.”
Nic’s sound is different. He’s obviously culturing the posthardcore message of masses. His sound is a sure thing. On songs, Theresa is caught in the chorus’ singing as saintly as she can muster; this is the girl who told me that girls in music don’t get the chance to really control a stage.

So now Houston’s pushing up dust thousands of miles away from the place that she came to get a degree in Fine Arts. “Before I moved to Hawaii I had never done anything with music before. I went there as an art major and realized that I really hated art.”

Houston spent the last two semesters, her first two semesters, at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She wrote an entire album of music in her dorm because she “had no friends.”

“When I moved, all the stupid boys played guitar, and, quite frankly, I thought that they sucked at it,” Houston said. She goes on to explain the problem with girls in the music industry. She never refers to them as women, only girls. She seems mildly offended when I call her a feminist and ask about girl bands like Sleater Kinney and Eisley.
“Girls would try to start bands with me. They only wanted to be in a chick band. I was left writing everything and teaching them how to play their own instruments.”
After proclaiming her new view on music, and her rightful spot in the world of it, she got down to business and signed up to be on the bill for Battle of the Bands at UHM.

She, of course, killed the competition.

But before killing said competition, she had hopes to finish up her album in time to give to people watching. She spent two weeks recording and mixing her album in the home of her friend Nic’s landlord. She played every instrument and sang every song. She wrote every lyric and every melody. That is how she gave birth to her one-woman band, Trey’s Parade.

There are talks of stage fright. There are talks of Houston’s legs splayed across the pages of Ka Leo last fall. Even through her monologue on what a good musician really does for her, she projects the sort of coy nature you find in field mice or other furry woodland creatures. Not that she’s a woodland creature; actually, quite far from it (although she’s quite aware of her own nature to be a bit timid).

The voice she uses for her music is nothing like her speaking voice. The voice she uses on each song is different from the next, trying out the different styles as if to set parameters for herself.

“I have the most severe case of stage fright,” says Houston as if she’s been to the psyche ward and back with her mauled esteem. “It really kind of sucked when I realized that I wanted to be a performer.”
She cites Yellow Hearted as one of the 7 and a half songs that she could care less about. When asked what she meant, she said that she only really cared about two and a half of the songs.

“I want for people who actually want to listen to the album for really understanding, not just to hear a catchy rift, but to come across that song and really think about it,” said Houston of her song “My June.”
“The pop world is entirely filled with meaningless lyrics,” she said. “It feels like people aren’t even trying.”
She goes on to talk about her song Mary that describes a ghost that she was told about in her dorm at UHM, Mokihana.

“I’m so scared of supernatural things and it completely controlled my life,” said Houston. She wrote the song after getting so scared that she couldn’t even stay in her dorm room by herself. “I used to make people stay over if my roommate was gone.”

Despite the unnatural odds of people staying in Hawaii, Theresa has gotten out. She is taken he - Honolulu Paper


Treys Parade - Parlay - 2006
Track Airplay: Mary, Heartstrums, My June, Yellow Hearted



It all started with a guitar and a 6 track... Intro, my name is Theresa Houston, I am a one woman band. The Parlay album, collectively, are all pieces I wrote in the fall semester of 2005 in my dark, curtain-drawn dorm room at the University of Hawaii. Over the winter season I recorded the entire album in a commercial studio with the help of my sound engineer, Nic Westlake. I have written and performed all instrument parts and vocals (minus Nic on "Heart Strums"). I've become very obsessed with music and have tried to expound upon different writing techniques on this album, so I hope you enjoy!