4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

The synesthetic Splavender

San Diego prog-pop quartet plays for beer — literally

Danny Ellis (Luzer T-shirt) composes for the senses...and for beer.
Danny Ellis (Luzer T-shirt) composes for the senses...and for beer.

Danny Ellis attended Valhalla High School, where he sang tenor in the choir. It was a rewarding experience, one that sent him to Europe three times.

“I sang at the Vatican, all around Rome, Germany, and Spain,” he said.

Video:

"My Chiffonier"

...off of Splavender's <em>Shoreline Dilemma</em>

...off of Splavender's Shoreline Dilemma

After high school, Ellis attended Humboldt State for one year, where he majored in vocal music, but he was doing so much music outside of school that he wanted to switch gears. He moved back to San Diego and played in a progressive indie-rock band called Real Things Are Good. When that band fizzled, he began recording his own music under the moniker of Splavender.

“This kid I knew in college used to put weed, tobacco, and lavender into papers and roll it up and smoke it,” Ellis said. “Instead of calling it a ‘spliff,’ he called it a ‘splavender.’ I just thought it was funny, so when I was looking for a band name, I decided to use it.”

The music of Splavender reflects its influences, which are, primarily, Pavement, Steely Dan, and the Beach Boys. It’s complex pop with psychedelic, genre-hopping tendencies. Originally it was just Ellis playing and recording everything but the drums, but soon three high school buddies from the Coronado Arts Academy (Oscar Carrion, Andre Flores, and Grant Goibert) joined the cause on bass, synth, and guitar, respectively. Drummer Anthony Noriega, a friend of Ellis’s since sixth grade, joined Splavender further down the road.

Ellis cites a unique attribute known as synesthesia (a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway) as a key aspect to his creative thinking.

Past Event

Splavender

“I have really colorful, visualizations with music. There are certain words, when anytime I hear them, I get a mustard taste in my mouth. It’s one of those uncontrollable things,” he explained.

His senses working on overdrive may have inspired the concept for his March show at Mike Hess Brewing. The evening will feature a live set by Splavender, and a flight of tasters — each beer chosen to complement a song.

For example, Splavender’s song “My Chiffonier” will be paired with Hess’ Habitus Double IPA: “Bitter and emotionally resonating lyrics that are accompanied by jangly, sun-soaked guitar riffs.”

“This is one of those synesthetic experiences where we’re trying to enhance multiple senses at the same time. The music can enhance the beer, and the beer can enhance the music,” Ellis said.

Splavender plays the Mira Mesa location of Mike Hess Brewing on Friday, March 18.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Teddy Kennedy, Hunter Thompson as villains, San Diegan sneaks onto Coronado Islands

Singer Elizabeth Cotten, world's worst surfer, San Diego water towers, Baja Okies
Danny Ellis (Luzer T-shirt) composes for the senses...and for beer.
Danny Ellis (Luzer T-shirt) composes for the senses...and for beer.

Danny Ellis attended Valhalla High School, where he sang tenor in the choir. It was a rewarding experience, one that sent him to Europe three times.

“I sang at the Vatican, all around Rome, Germany, and Spain,” he said.

Video:

"My Chiffonier"

...off of Splavender's <em>Shoreline Dilemma</em>

...off of Splavender's Shoreline Dilemma

After high school, Ellis attended Humboldt State for one year, where he majored in vocal music, but he was doing so much music outside of school that he wanted to switch gears. He moved back to San Diego and played in a progressive indie-rock band called Real Things Are Good. When that band fizzled, he began recording his own music under the moniker of Splavender.

“This kid I knew in college used to put weed, tobacco, and lavender into papers and roll it up and smoke it,” Ellis said. “Instead of calling it a ‘spliff,’ he called it a ‘splavender.’ I just thought it was funny, so when I was looking for a band name, I decided to use it.”

The music of Splavender reflects its influences, which are, primarily, Pavement, Steely Dan, and the Beach Boys. It’s complex pop with psychedelic, genre-hopping tendencies. Originally it was just Ellis playing and recording everything but the drums, but soon three high school buddies from the Coronado Arts Academy (Oscar Carrion, Andre Flores, and Grant Goibert) joined the cause on bass, synth, and guitar, respectively. Drummer Anthony Noriega, a friend of Ellis’s since sixth grade, joined Splavender further down the road.

Ellis cites a unique attribute known as synesthesia (a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway) as a key aspect to his creative thinking.

Past Event

Splavender

“I have really colorful, visualizations with music. There are certain words, when anytime I hear them, I get a mustard taste in my mouth. It’s one of those uncontrollable things,” he explained.

His senses working on overdrive may have inspired the concept for his March show at Mike Hess Brewing. The evening will feature a live set by Splavender, and a flight of tasters — each beer chosen to complement a song.

For example, Splavender’s song “My Chiffonier” will be paired with Hess’ Habitus Double IPA: “Bitter and emotionally resonating lyrics that are accompanied by jangly, sun-soaked guitar riffs.”

“This is one of those synesthetic experiences where we’re trying to enhance multiple senses at the same time. The music can enhance the beer, and the beer can enhance the music,” Ellis said.

Splavender plays the Mira Mesa location of Mike Hess Brewing on Friday, March 18.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Infamous Las Vegas name behind $1500 in Gloria post-election cash

Binion, "unsuitable to be licensed as a key person," teams with Polizzotto for San Diego contributions
Next Article

The man behind the Mills Act

Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close