Clean cut and youthful (ages 17-21), energetic, and wearing suits and ties, at first glance you might think the six members of local indie rock/funk band PaperWork, are part of some misplaced boy band. But after winning the whole enchilada at the Sound Hole’s Battle of the Bands on June 30, PaperWork proved to a somewhat surprised mostly hard-rock audience (and itself) that plenty of people are digging the sound and show from this new original act from Pawleys Island. New kids on the rock ‘n’ roll block, for certain.
“Wearing suits is kind of our thing,” said Conner Mills, guitarist and back-up vocalist. “We’ve been playing together since we were around 15, but the band really got serious last December and in January .” Mills and band mates thought they wouldn’t have a chance in securing the top prize at the Sound Hole’s Battle of the Bands - $1,000 cash and a few other perks – but win they did. The band will perform at the Sound Hole in Myrtle Beach at 9 tonight; its first show back at the venue that hosted its big win.
“In the preliminary [B.O.T.B.] round we were up against established bands like Prowler,” said Mills, “and then in the finals we were up against Below the Bassline, Drew Jacobs, Bamboo Forest – they’ve all been around – especially Drew – he’s a legend. We didn’t think we had that many fans, but we brought a decent crowd and even the people who didn’t know us were really digging it. The crowd response is a really a big part of why and how we won.”
Joining Mills in PaperWork is Ephraim Brown (lead vocals, keyboards), Alex Robinson (keyboards, vocals), Thomas Smith (bass), Johnny Richeson (drums), and part-time guitarist Daniel Simons, who performs full time with the Tim Clark Band. Each of the six members of PaperWork is a Waccamaw High School graduate. Mills plans to attend Coastal Carolina University this fall.
PaperWork is not alone in the world as far as monikers go, as a Google search will reference other bands around the U.S. with the same name. “There’s one from Austin, Texas, and they’re kind of fighting us right now,” said Mills. “But they’re married guys with kids and stuff – might be time to give up on your dreams,” he laughed. “Their last Web site update was like in 2009. These days if a band has an old Facebook page, they’re like, ‘Oh we’re still around’ even if they haven’t played in years.”
PaperWork (the local version) hopes to parlay its newfound momentum and success into something substantial, something that might last until its members – God forbid – get old, married and have teenagers of their own. “We’re taking this extremely seriously,” said Mills. “We’ll use the Sound Hole money to record an EP we hope will be out this fall, and we’re trying to get as many gigs as we can.”
Catch up on some PaperWork at 9 tonight at The Sound Hole (1004 Chester Street, Myrtle Beach), with This is for my Friend. PaperWork performs again Friday at Block Party Nightlife with Doctrine of Ethos (2997 Waccamaw Blvd., Myrtle Beach).
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