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Indie Outing: The National
The National at Bonnaroo 2010
Names: Aaron Dessner, Bryce Dessner, Bryan Devendorf, Scott Devendorf
Band: The National
Instruments: (l-r) Guitar, Guitar, Drums and Bass)
Indie-Jam connection: With the exception of frontman Matt Berninger, all the members of The National have a deep connection to jam music. The Dessners jammed on Allman Brothers and Grateful Dead songs at summer camp and played in a jam-heavy cover band in school called Equinox with Bryan Devendor and future Pandora Executive Producer Kevin Seal. The musicians all followed their love of jam music through Phish, and Scott Devendorf wore a bootleg Steal Your Face shirt onstage at Bonnaroo this past spring.
Seminal jam moment: The members of The National all dragged Matt Berninger to a run of Phish’s songs at Deer Creek. Berninger, who had never been in a festival-like setting, was so miserable that he spent the weekend in the car while his friends soaked in the experience like true Phish Heads.
Lot Talk: “You’d be surprised at how many bands are influenced by the Grateful Dead. We were joking with our friends in Grizzly Bear about starting a Dead cover band with them because they’re kind of obsessed with that music. I mean certainly some of the longer form improvisational stuff we’ve done over the years is influenced by the Grateful Dead, though I am a lightweight compared to many Dead fans. The full-on Deadhead in my community is National drummer Bryan Devendorf. The Dead and New Order are the two things that are essential for him,” Bryce Dessner, Jambands.com
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