Vita And The Woolf Make Their Mark on the Path of a New Trail in Philly Music

The seemingly inescapable name Vita And The Woolf has spent most of 2015 already on the radar of many in the Philly music scene, performing in WXPN sessions and Red Bull Sound Select performances. For Jennifer Pague and company, this has simply been the nature of their rising emergence. A walk in the park, albeit off the beaten path, the band seeks to make their way in pursuit of a creative direction and through the power of live performance. In anticipation of a stripped-down WXPN “Live At Lunch” performance in Dilworth Park this Wednesday at noon, Rock On Philly sat down with Jennifer to discuss this diverse act’s blossoming success.

 Rock On Philly: It is often said that this band is your brain-child, as you have grown to a point of great local repute and curiosity among music fans for your music as well as for very engaging and interactive live performances, what does that mean for you? From what depth and mental process did this music spring from and what inspired the formation of Vita And The Woolf?

Jennifer Pague: It is such an honor to have people like my music. It’s actually more so surprising to me. When I first started recording my first songs I was really insecure and unsure of them. The music sprung from feeling rejected lots of times. Also, a lot of it comes from anger[, and] a lot of it comes from love and joy from people who I have been close with these past three or four years. Vita and the Woolf was inspired because I just felt a need to make music.

ROP: Your music has really caught on here in Philly and seems to be gaining popularity among audiences in the local scene, what do you attribute that to and what are some of the sounds behind your music?

JP: I attribute it to XPN firstly. They have been a huge help to my band and I can’t begin to show them how much I appreciate what they do. Also, to friends along the way. Another thing might be that I’m just trying to make something different, trying to test the boundaries in certain aspects.

ROP: As a Pennsylvania product, tell us a bit about your personal background, musical upbringing and development and personal journey that brought you to this point in your career?

JP: I am from West Chester PA. Pretty typical suburban white girl up-bringing. I was really, really bored as a child, no offense to my parents. They did an awesome job raising me. However, I wanted to travel and be in the middle of everything if that makes sense. My mom put me in School of Rock when I was 15 and I right away was doing really cool stuff with that. Played at Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, etc. It was sweet. I started playing piano in 2nd grade, saxophone in fourth, clarinet in fifth, and then switched to bass clarinet in sixth [grade]. Was always in choir. Decided really fast I wasn’t cut out for musical theatre.

ROP: What have been some of the highlights of breaking into the music scene for you?

JP: Highlights are being able to play a show every weekend almost. I love, love, love playing music. It’s so much fun. I would perform every night if I could. Playing on XPN and getting on XPN has been super crazy! Touring and seeing the country is a blessing.

ROP: What are some of the artists who have influenced your music the most and are there any musical directions not yet taken for you that you feel drawn to pursue?

JP: Artists include Radiohead, James Blake, Nirvana, Joni Mitchell, Caribou, Bat For Lashes, The Pixies, Alicia Keys. Musical directions I haven’t taken yet. Hip Hop. I really want to dive deeper into that “genre” and get to know more history about it.

ROP: Crowd-funding has become a very contemporary method by which artists produce their own music, tell us about your recent Kickstarter campaign and upcoming new music?

JP: People are so generous and amazing! We made our Kickstarter and as I am writing this interview I am about to go over to the studio and start recording keys for the next EP. It’s gonna’ be really exciting this next year to hear what people think of it. I think it’s going to be a much more cohesive EP and finally something I’m much more proud of. The last record was kind of something I just had to release to get my life together.

ROP: This Wednesday May 13th you will be on the WXPN “Live At Lunch” stage in Dilworth Park to perform at noon, then on Sunday June 28th you will be performing the Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park and at the WXPN Xponential Festival this July 24-26th. As a music and baseball fan I am interested to know, what do these great opportunities mean to you in terms of exposure as an artist?

JP: It’s crazy. It’s a Philadelphia honor really. I’m just stoked to get to sing in a stadium. I’ve never sung in a stadium and in front of all those Philadelphians. Gonna’ be amazing.

 

Be sure to check out more of Vita And The Woolf at https://vitaandthewoolf.bandcamp.com/ and come out to hear them perform this Wednesday May 13th (today!) in City Hall’s Dilworth Park at 12:00 noon for WXPN’s “Live At Lunch” concert in Center City, Philadelphia!

Featured Image by Jay Miller

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