To appreciate the recent rise of Tapioca and the Flea is to recognize the power of persistence and dedication to the idea that a bedroom project is always just a song or two away from blowing up. For Samuel Jacob-Lopez Jr., the lead vocalist and brainchild of the OC-bred outfit, years of pawing and tinkering with electronic music in between gigs as a hired gun for gritty garage bands was always just something he'd seen as a spare time outlet with no intention of gaining an audience. Fast forward to 2013 and songs like "Mellotron" and "Home" are being blasted over the airwaves and getting clicked on like crazy.
Over the last few months, Tapioca and the Flea's profile boost in the eyes of indie rock tastemakers comes on the heels of a relentless radio campaign inspired by Lopez's new and improved sound bolstered by a band full of his best friends and roommates. Right around the time stations like 89.9 FM KCRW and 98.7 ALT FM began to take notice, Lopez--along with drummer Matt McClanahan, guitarist Ronnie Knott and bassist/keyboardist Frank Alva--were already on a mission to play key gigs like Silverlake's Jubliee Fest well as packed shows at Bardot and House of Blues. Currently, the band is on the cusp of releasing their new EP in the fall. As opportunities continue to expand exponentially for TATF, they're adamant about maintaining their connection to OC, which includes a gig tomorrow at Detroit Bar alongside fellow OC/LA band Mt. Ossa as well as Gazoota and Semi Sweet. We caught up with Lopez over the phone to get a better understanding of what this whirlwind summer has been like for them.More »