This is a preview of the new Deli charts - we are working on finalizing them by the end of 2013.

Go to the old Top 300 charts


ugly purple sweater

Listen Local First Presents The 9 Live @ Black Cat 10/19

DC based music advocate Listen Local First is celebrating its first birthday/anniversary on Friday Oct. 19 by featuring 9 local singer-songwriters (The 9 Songwriter Series) on the Black Cat stage. The bill includes Christylez Bacon, Sam McCormally of Ugly Purple Sweater, Gordon Daniels of Luck Dub, Margot MacDonald, Justin Trawick, Ryan McLaughlin of Typefighter, Victoria Vox, Wytold, and Taylor Carson. The 9 was founded by Justin Trawick to bring together local artists to tour and play in larger venues, rotating between songs as well as sharing the stage together to bring a variety of entertainment for audiences.

It all goes down at the Black on Friday 10/19, 8 PM, $10.

Interview with Ugly Purple Sweater: DC Deli's Artist of the Month (June)

DC's indie folk rockers Ugly Purple Sweater lead the poll last month and clearly took the cake as Band of the Month. If you haven't yet, check out their truly excellent album Conventions (now available here) and you'll hear why the fans pushed for that UPS domination. We got a hold of Sam McCormally (vocals/guitar/keys) who spoke on behalf of the bunch including Rachel Lord (banjo/keys/guitar/vocals,) Will McKindley-Ward (guitar/vocals,) Mike Tasevoli (drums,) and Rishi Chakrabarty (bass.) Here he tells us about goodwill sweaters, growing up in the "CD Era", and scoring films. Now onto the interview...



Interview with Ugly Purple Sweater

- by Dawn Reed

Deli: How did the band start?
Sam McCormally (vocals/guitar/keys)-The band came together gradually. Rachel and I started playing a couple of years ago when our upstairs neighbors heard us playing in our living room and asked if we wanted to play at an Obama fundraiser at an Ethiopian place in DC. I  met Mike and Rishi via Craigslist, when their band Mother was looking for a keyboardist. Aside from the time a recovering gambling addict came to take some extra potting soil I had in my basement, they are the single best Craigslist experience I've ever had. Will I met through a friend. Rachel and I were writing folky tunes for banjo and guitar for a while, but we found ourselves wanting to write bigger, more expansive songs, so we recruited those guys, who now are really central to the band.

Where did the band name come from?
I found a sweater at goodwill one day that a friend of mine totally despised, but I decided to wear it anyway. A lot. I think I gave my undergrad thesis presentation wearing it. But the idea is that music is a really personal experience for me. The only time I can get any work done is when I shut off the critical part of my brain and follow my intuition. It's a pickle; the whole point is to connect with the audience, but so far as I can tell, the best way to connect with the audience is to ignore them, and just make music that I am excited about. Everything else ends up seeming fake.

What are your biggest musical influences?
I'd say the things that have helped shape my musical life the most are the piano lessons I took as a kid, the music theory course I took, learning to play jazz in the big band in high school, and the fact that it was so easy to steal music from other people's iTunes libraries in college. Also, I think growing up in the suburbs in the CD era had a big effect, because I was stuck listening to the same 10 CDs on repeat for three years. People don't listen to music like that any more. 15 years ago, I'd buy something and listen to it a hundred times even if I didn't like it, in the hope that it would grow on me.

What artists local, national and/or international) are you currently listening to?
Nationally, I'm listening to the War On Drugs, Fiona Apple, and Deerhunter and associated projects, to name a few. I have also been buying cheap world music LPs from the used rack at Smash Records, which is always a treasure hunt. Locally, I am completely enamored with More Humans from DC and Trillions from Richmond.

What's the first concert that you ever attended and  first album that you ever bought?
Concert: HFStival in 1998, featuring Live and Blink 182 and The Offspring.
Album: TLC's CrazySexyCool. That band holds up a lot better than most of the stuff at HFStival, I think.

What do you love about DC's music scene?
One thing I like is that literally everyone I have played music with in DC is from the area. That is probably because our scene is less nationally visible then say Portland, or Nashville, or Baltimore, or Raleigh, and so people aren't moving here to pursue their musical career. But it gives it a real sense of camaraderie. There are a lot of dedicated people who genuinely love making music.

What would you like to see change in the local music scene?
Oh, I dunno. I'd love for someone to get stinking rich and absurdly famous and drag the rest of us along by their coat tails, but that's not really how it works. (plus, we have our share of extremely successful bands; Thievery Corporation comes to mind, and the Walkmen are DC alums.)

What are your plans for the upcoming year?
We're trying to transition to a model where we're putting out shorter releases more often, so we'll be releasing a single in the fall and an EP after that. I'm also working on a film score for a documentary called "Fly By Light" about some DC teenagers on a retreat in West Virginia, and I'm working with some classical Indian musicians on a score for a play called "Meena's Dream."

What was your most memorable of live show?
Honestly, our shows keep getting more and more fun to play, so I'm inclined to say the most recent one!

Is there someone who has helped your band grow through support?
So many people! Our friends in pearl and the beard have been really encouraging.

Is there a piece of equipment you couldn't live without and why?
I realized recently I've had the same guitar for over ten years. I don't think I'll ever get rid of it, unless there's a terrible fire or something.






Ugly Purple Sweater



- news for musician and music pros -