Halero gears up for big yearWritten by Mike Bauman | | firstname.lastname@example.org
So far, 2013 is shaping up to be a productive year for local rockers Halero.
The band will headline the University of Toledo’s RockeTHON dance marathon on April 20, an event which helps raise funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Additionally, Halero is set to begin recording its debut album in early March, one that’s already more than halfway funded thanks to the band’s recently launched Kickstarter project for the record.
An online fundraising tool for creative projects, Kickstarter was originally a way for fans to preorder Halero’s upcoming album and fund the recording in the process.
However, the band has been pleasantly surprised that most of the donations have been high.
“So far only one person has just done $10,” Halero drummer Donovon Thakur said. “Everybody else has thrown that or way more than that at us, and so it’s really cool that we’re getting that kind of support.”
Featuring Thakur, Matt Chlebowski (lead vocals, guitars), Sawyer Frey (guitars, vocals) and Amanda Frey (bass), the members have roots that trace back before the band’s inception. Thakur and Chlebowski grew up as next door neighbors, while Sawyer and Amanda are siblings. All four graduated from Anthony Wayne High School.
When Thakur and Chlebowski decided to form a band, Thakur turned to Sawyer.
“He was one of my guitar students, actually, and I knew that he had a lot of potential,” Thakur said of Sawyer. Thakur studied guitar performance at Bowling Green State University and is now pursuing graduate studies in music therapy at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo.
After Halero’s former drummer moved away, Thakur moved from bass to drums and the band operated as a trio for a couple years. Halero then released its EP “Actually Pretty Good” before determining that adding a bassist would be ideal and bringing Amanda on board about a year ago.
“She’s doing pretty well,” Thakur said of Amanda. “She definitely had a lot of catchup to play, and that was pretty rough for her to get all the catchup. But we really put in a lot of time to give her all the resources that she would need to catch up.”
While Thakur said the band is a little nervous about tracking songs for its upcoming full-length, the band is equally excited about recording at Little Elephant Recording with Rob Courtney and Brian Gross-Bias.
“If you check out Little Elephant Recording, they are two busy guys because they are recording almost every Toledo band I’ve ever heard of,” Thakur said.
In addition to providing the most financially efficient studio, Thakur said that the enthusiasm of Courtney and Gross-Bias was also reassuring.
“We’re really excited to work with them,” Thakur said.
Halero has been busy working on new material for the full-length, a process that Thakur said has been a collective effort and gone exceptionally well.
“Our writing process is pretty unique because we write almost entirely in collaboration,” Thakur said. “I know a couple of our older songs would be [created when] Matt would bring in an idea, or I know I’ve written one of the songs and Sawyer has written one of the songs, and we come in and then we all kind of write parts to their songs.
“But these new songs have been [created when] someone brings in an idea that’s less than 10 seconds, and then we write the rest of the song all in collaboration together. So I think that’s pretty different than of how a lot of bands write.”
Thakur said he hopes Halero will have its new album out by April, which would coincide perfectly with UT’s RockeTHON.
“We’re headlining that, and so that’s going to be for a crowd of over 700 people right after our album gets out,” Thakur said. “That’s the big news for us.”