By Christy Ulmet
Toby Haydel always knew in the back of his mind that he wanted to be in a band. His dream came true in 2013 when he and some of his friends started a band that will perform tonight in the final round of a local battle of the bands.
Phin, who will play tonight at one of five bands at The Pavilion East in the Music City Mayhem Showdown at 6 p.m., is made up of six members who draw their inspiration for their music from the same influences, said Haydel, a junior at Trevecca. “Everybody brings a different strength to the table, whether it just be organization or positivity, or anything else,” Haydel said.
One of Haydel’s goals was to create music that he would like, and music that others would like. Nick Huddleston, band member, describes the style as being Nashville indie rock. It’s a culmination of what everybody in the band listens to.
Haydel recorded demos that he made on his computer, and would let his friends have a listen. His friend, Cody Garrow, suggested that the music be taken to a real studio. He and Garrow went to Grayson Proctor, a Trevecca alum and member of the up-and-coming band Vinyl Thief, for help. Haydel got a group together to record an EP at Brown Owl Studio in Berry Hill. Proctor and Stephen Earnest, sound engineer, helped the group put together an EP.
Phin is currently working on a single, which will be released later this spring or early summer.
A couple of weeks ago, Phin also brought a manager on board to help keep the band organized. Chris Nordane, who was introduced to the group at a Lightning 100 Nashville Sunday Night concert when the group played with another band called Coin.
The band members always hit a few stumbling blocks before concerts. Usually the group isn’t able to pull together a rehearsal until the night before because of busy schedules.Additionally, Coby Arner, the group’s drummer, has to travel four hours north from Georgia each time the group performs.
The band gathers before each show and prays as a group, sometimes including the other bands they’re playing with.
Occasionally, Haydel laughed, the band stretches in preparation for shows just for fun. It doesn’t do anything, he said, but it’s funny.
Tonight, they are one of five bands left from the original 32 in the contest.
Haydel admits that he didn’t know what the results would be for the local contest. Nick Huddleston, band member, has an idea of what helped the group get to the final level.
“The fact that we had a community of people spreading the word like they did really helped. Our friends of our friends of our friends were posting things on Facebook, and we didn’t even know them. Word spread really fast,” Huddleston said.
Tonight, the voting will be done by the audience live at the show. In order to get a ballot, concert-goers must arrive by 6:00 p.m. and stay through the entire concert to be able to vote. For more information on who’s playing, click here.
Upcoming shows: Coin with Phin @ Barefoots Joe:
Friday, April 25 8:00 p.m.
Phin @ Boonearoo 4:
Saturday, April 26 4 p.m.
Trevecca Nazarene University quad
Who’s in the band:
Toby Haydel: vocals, synthesizer
Cobey Arner: drum
Graham Scott: bass
Preston Hunt: keys, synthesizer
Nick Huddleston: guitar
Cody Garrow: guitar