Stormy Nights are music to students’ ears

by Karl LangWeb Editor

Local student musicians are looking to show off their musical abilities at an upcoming Stormy Nights session on Nov. 10.

The performers scheduled to play that night include: seniors Anders Dover and Collin Rice, junior Danny Heggen and sophomores Nels Dovre and Ryan Steir.

Many of the musicians have all ready been appearing at various coffee houses and open mike venues throughout the Des Moines area.The music to be played will include alternative country, folk and folk-rock.

“I would say we are folk music or alternative country,” said Anders Dovre of his duo band with his brother, Nels Dovre. “Our biggest influence would have to be Bruce Springsteen, and beyond that we like Whiskey Town. A lot of our songs are based on the lyrics too, so we are inspired by writers like Faulkner and James Wright.”

The Dovres have been playing together for over three years doing shows in various coffee houses in Des Moines. Dreams of rock stardom aren’t in their eyes, however.

“We aren’t really rock ‘n’ roll. I play the guitar and harmonica, while Nels plays the guitar and cello. Not much of the electric stuff,” Dovre said.

The Dovre brothers won’t be the only duo playing at the Stormy Nights. Rice and Heggen will also do some songs together, with Heggen performing his solo music later on in the show.

“Danny will be playing with me for some of the stuff I do,” Rice said. “He will be playing a percussion instrument. My style is more rhythmic and mellow, sort of like a Jack Johnson feel. A lot of my inspiration comes from philosophy because I’m a philosophy major, things like race, ethics and politics. I write a lot about being a dreamer and thinker and being trapped in America. The lyrics just kind of come out as I live life.”

Heggen looks forward to performing with Rice, as well as doing some of his own solo stuff on the stage that night.

“I play acoustic folk-rock, like Ryan Adams, Bright Eyes and Dashboard Confessional,” Heggen said. “I wanted to perform for fun, to let people hear me that haven’t before.”

Rice wants to see the Simpson music scene develop on campus, with hopes of expanding to somewhere else that will allow them to showcase their talent beyond the walls of the Simpson campus, and spilling into Indianola.

“I’m not from Iowa, so my viewpoint is sometimes different,” Rice said. “I sing about things that aren’t pertinent to people that grow up in, say, rural settings. Coming from a rural town, people aren’t used to having a local music scene, and I think it’s important to have one.”

Many of the musicians feel they have been well received by those interested in music on the local level, but some feel it’s still too enclosed within itself. Only a few people take interest in the Simpson music scene.

“It’s really good in small circles,” Rice said. “Some are very receptive, but it’s hard to get all of campus interested in local music. It would be really nice if there was a place to play in Indianola, that would be great.”