She Bears are releasing their new record, I Found Myself Asleep tonight at Casa Cantina. Aquabear had a chance to talk to Stephen Pence about the band, their new album, boats, getting drunk, record contracts, and a lot more.

It should be noted that an original idea for the interview was for me to send Stephen questions and then he would get really, really drunk and leave me voicemails answering them late at night. I thought it was a great idea, but the logistics fell apart  a bit after 13 voice mails and a lack of a good transcribing system. I am including some of the voicemail ramblings, which include contributions from: Stephen, Shea Stanley (a local hobo witch doctor who as of press time is not in the band), and Ryan  (who is in the band). Other folks left some messages too sorry if you were left out, also not all of those messages are transcribed here..

Interview after the break….

So what’s the deal with She Bears?

Stephen Pence (sober): We enjoy playing music together. We’re all close friends and it’s a lot of fun to get together and make music. We’re looking to do as much as we can with what we have.

What do you like about playing and/or living in Athens and Ohio?
Stephen (sober): Athens has a lot of great venues. The music scene is thriving and every band seems to be supportive of each other. There’s a lot of camaraderie between the bands in Athens.
Stephen (drunk on voicemail): I get real drunk. Real drunk. And I like the fact that I can walk where I want drunk as a “scaler” (eidtor’s note: I believe Stephen meant sailor.) and it works every time. Every time.

What are your influences? Any local ones?
SP (sober):
Each member has their own unique influences. Modest Mouse and Neutral Milk hotel were big influences with Stephen and what he is doing now, as well as, Kaslo, Russenorsk, and Casual Future being really inspirational when we started out.

Favorite show you have ever played?
SP (sober): There’s not a specific show that stands out.  Each show seems to get better, and it’s always an adventure.
Shea Stanley (drunk on voicemail): Easily, the one in the Superdome in Dallas, Texas. New Orleans. New Orleans, Texas.
SP (voicemail): I am so f*%$%#ing sorry.
SP (voicemail): I have this thing in my life where nothing seems real outside of two weeks of where I am, which is a problem for the future but also a problem for the past. I like the last one, because I had fun and got to dance and sing.
Ryan Franz (voicemail): A House show at the Superdome with Kaslo and Lohio…I fell asleep and dreamed while playing.

Talk about your new record. Now.
SP (sober):
Overall, the record has a lot of energy. The songs have been written over a period of almost two years so you can hear a progression from how we started to the way we are now. So far, it’s been received well by people who’ve heard it, and we’re really proud of all the songs.
SP (voicemail):
I am confused what about our new record. I am confused. Hold on. Brian, this is stephen.
SS (voicemail): It is compact disc format, and contains roughly 10 songs. A parmanout to all that is parpadigigim, persepolis, miami, I think I am going to throw up.

How was it working at 3 Elliott with Josh?
SP (sober): Wonderful! He was able to capture our sound. We tracked the drums, bass, and guitar all live and recorded on tape. We couldn’t imagine it sounding any other way. Through the whole process, Josh was really excited and encouraging, which made us even more proud of the work we were doing.
SP (voicemail): I want Josh to adopt me, that is my plan for my entire life. I am banking on Josh Ant. raising me as his son, I just want to be a little Nutch. That’s all. He recorded our music while we were playing it. We talked about things that mattered to us.
RF (voicemail):
Josh was amazing. He could tell what we wanted it to sound like even if we didn’t know.

What’s the plan now?

SP (sober): We’ve got four shows coming up this fall. We want to send the album out to as many labels as we can and tour in the summer. We’re really hoping to release an EP sometime in the winter.
SP (voicemail): Banking on Mega Millions this week is ___ dollars. I am going to buy a big fu&*#ing boat. She Bears loves boats. I am gonna park it in a small pond. A big boat in a small pond and we will practice there. I wanna be Steve Albini.

Tell people to come to your show.
SP (sober): Come to Casa Thursday, October 15th. It’s free! Be there or be square!
RF (voicemail): People should come because we are a lot less broing than we used to be. It’s more of a rock show.

If I could give you anything right now what would it be?
SP (sober): You could take away the un-boner that you’ve given me.
Teddy (voicemail, I think its Teddy): Corporate contract with Universal records, music isn’t that good until a producer from a large label comes in and tells you how to play your songs. They can turn you into a radio band. So we can get millions of dollars from the record company.
SP (voicemail): Half-she-bear and half-aquabear baby. Then the baby is two things. I would also like some romance every once in a while.

Find out more about She Bears at