Where Is My Mind?: Reading Rainbow


Where Is My Mind?: Reading Rainbow

- by Q.D. Tran

If you’ve been following The Deli, then last year’s Best of Philly Poll Winners Reading Rainbow (a.k.a. Rob Garcia and Sarah Everton) are no strangers to you. We’ve had great time following all the accolades and opportunities that have come their way this past year. Today marks the release of Reading Rainbow’s Prism Eyes (which can be purchased here) on Hozac Records, but this dynamic duo/husband and wife team (“like Sonic Youth”) already has a new split 7” ready for release in a few weeks. Though life has been pretty hectic, Garcia and Everton were nice enough to let us pick their brains about what’s been going on in the Reading Rainbow camp as well as embracing the dumbness of tweeting, Ancient Astronauts, Antique Road Show, and much, much more.

The Deli: So much has happened to Reading Rainbow since we last interviewed you for winning our Best of Philly Poll. What has been the most exciting for you?

Rob Garcia: This year has really flown by. For me, it’s definitely been meeting Todd from HoZac at SXSW and the following recording sessions afterwards knowing that we were going to have an album released on his label. We're super excited to be a part of their label.

Sarah Everton: SXSW was really great for sure and getting everything ready for the album was intense and life consuming - but in a good way.

TD: You recorded most of the new album down in Virgina at Eternal Summers’ studio and the rest with Brian McTear at Miner Street Studios for Shaking Through. What were the differences and similarities between both recording experiences and producers’ styles?

RG: The main thing that was similar was the relaxed and comfortable atmosphere each place had. Going into either studio, we had a vision of what we wanted to accomplish and was able to to achieve that equally in both places. We pretty much just had 2 weekend long recording sessions in VA, and 1 day long recording session here in Philly. Recording at either location was a whirlwind, but the people involved in both locations were really great at helping us get everything done.

TD: You recently took a ride with The Black Cab Sessions. What was that experience like? What song did you record?

RG: It was really fun, but also kind of nerve racking. Just knowing that people like Brian Wilson have also done a session makes you feel really honored and that you better not mess up! We recorded the song "I See Light" off of Prism Eyes with a 12 string acoustic guitar.

SE: Yeah - it was great. I was all ready to do tambourine, but then it was too loud so I didn't even play anything for that song!

TD: You also swung by Daytrotter on your last mini-tour. How did those sessions go? What songs should we be expecting to hear? Are you looking forward to or dreading to see how you are depicted in animation?

RG: Doing the Daytrotter session was really awesome. They rent out the top floor of this old radio station in a tiny town 3 hours west of Chicago. All of them were really nice people, and it was also really cool to learn that for the 5 people that live there, doing Daytrotter is there full-time job. We played 4 songs from Prism Eyes, and one from Mystical Participation. They sounded fantastic!

SE: Yeah - I am kinda worried to see our drawing - hahaha. But I am looking forward to seeing it!

TD: It’s common to see duos add more members to their live performance when they start to play bigger venues. Do you ever picture yourself adding more members?

RG: We've actually talked about this, and we even have a person in mind we would like to join us. They would play guitar. But we really wouldn't want to add anyone unless it felt right. I feel like it would seem odd or even out of place unless it fit into the natural evolution of our band.

SE: TRUE THAT! I like how we aren't even thinking about a bass player - haha.

TD: I see you biking all around town. Have you ever brought your bikes on tour?

RG: Unfortunately, so far our tours haven't left us enough time to explore any of the cities we've stopped in. After a couple of days stuck in the car, you really start to feel like you need to get some exercise. So yeah, I think bringing a bike would be great!

SE: Yeah - that would be chill to have bikes. Not getting exercise except for playing can be a bummer though.

TD: I saw that you tweeted how you hate being described as “cute”. What is your favorite description that you ever read or heard about yourself?

SE: Recently when somebody found out we are married they said, "Oh like Sonic Youth!" which was a non-embarrassing comparison to another couple playing music. That's just one thing that comes to mind.

TD: Do you like tweeting or do you feel like it’s just something you have to do these days to help with marketing?

SE: HAHAHA! I don't know about marketing, but at first (like I'm assuming most sane people), we were skeptical and thought it seemed dumb. Then we embraced its dumbness and ran with it!

TD: Would you prefer to spend more time in the studio or on tour?

RG: I personally love both. It’s great being able to record songs in a studio that were once just thoughts in your brain. And then the flipside is being able to play all of the new songs that you’re really excited about live, when you have all of your adrenaline flowing.


TD: You were really getting into the Beatles the last time we caught up with you. Any thoughts about them finally letting iTunes sell their recordings?

RG: I thought it was strange that they weren't on there before. I guess I don't know much about it. I have a lot of their vinyl and CDs already so I won't be buying anything off of iTunes. But my main reaction I guess is that there are so many used CDs and records out there in people's local record stores already. People should help them out rather than Apple.

SE: Did that have anything to do with the lawsuit between their label and Apple having stolen the name?

TD: eMusic recently signed a deal with Universal Music Group causing indie labels like Merge and Beggars Group to pull their artists’ material from eMusic’s catalogue. What  do you think about this boycott?

RG: I think it’s really unfortunate that the small labels don't have another source for sharing their music, but I think music fans will still know how and where to buy music they like. We always get our music either at a local records store, from bands directly at their shows, or ordered from the labels directly. This way the people who need to money the most are sure to get it.

TD: I’ve been watching a lot of History Channel lately, and have been really into the Ancient Astronaut hypothesis/Alien series about aliens coming to earth in the past and possibly intervening at points in history helping to jumpstart the evolution of our society. Does that sound crazy or is that something that you might be down with?

RG: Haha! I don't know about all that. We actually just went to the science museum and watched a movie about black holes in the planetarium. I just started thinking that traveling between galaxies would be nearly impossible because time is completely relative. Time to us is based on the rotation of earth around the sun, something that is completely unique to our solar system. So for another group of aliens to travel all the way to earth at multiple key points in our evolution would be quite a stretch I think.

TD: I love Antique Road Show. It seems everything makes a comeback if you hold onto it long enough. If you got tickets to Antique Road Show, what would you bring to be appraised?

RG: Aw man, we have so much good shit in our house that Sarah's found in thrift stores.

SE: I'd bring my rock, mineral, and arrowhead collection and this Thai statuette of a Hindi god that somebody gave to us for free. It looks really old and is made of some weird metal.

TD: Any tour plans or things we should be looking out for in the future from the Reading Rainbow camp?

RG: Actually in a few weeks we are also releasing a split 7" with the band Coasting from Brooklyn. We're gonna do a short north-east coast tour with them. We're hoping in 2011 we'll be able to go on a much bigger tour. Also already makin’ plans for SXSW too!

SE: Yeah - 7"s and an EP. Touring as much as we can hopefully. Learning how to play guitar.


(Photo by Peter English)

(Cover Art by Sarah Everton)






Reading Rainbow
Prism Eyes



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