"And Then You Can Breathe Again…" -An Interview With Paper Days
Interview by Kyla Wyllie
Photography by Annika Cimas
Sometimes to achieve a goal, you have to look at things in a “step-by-step” standpoint. It’s more about how you approach an issue or a dream rather than the thing itself, and the journey can determine the endpoint. Two of the members of Paper Days, Niko Sitaras (lead vocals and guitarist) and Jordan Graham (drummer), gave us some insight into the journey they took to get to the position they’ve found themselves in today, and how they plan to get to their next destination: the rest of their lives.
The band known as “Paper Days” started out like most, in their high school years. Each member was originally committed in separate bands, but they started jamming together, and as one thing led to another, Paper Days was born. The band has since undergone some changes, with the addition of Niko’s brother Xander Sitaras on bass, and Nate Blake on guitar.
“Making music is really important, but Niko does a lot of networking, and I think that that's helped us the most,” Jordan says. Niko jumps in and adds, “emailing, a lot of phone calls, social media...”. Both musicians agree that networking's extremely important if you wish to make it as a successful musician, or in nearly any career choice.
Surrounding yourself with people who aspire to the same dreams as you, or have already achieved what you are perusing, is important to develop contacts to aid in furthering your career. With networking, comes opportunities.
“After our first practice,” (they also agree that practice is the most crucial key of progressing musically), “we were like, ‘okay, we need to get a show.’ After that, I (Niko) went to see Inspired And The Sleep (check out our interview with them here!). I hadn’t really been to many local shows, but I talked to them afterwards and we ended up getting booked, like the next month.” Jordan laughs and is quick to add, “We didn’t have a set ready, we just told them we could play.” Moral of the story? “You just have to go to shows to get your music out there,” says Sitaras. “Go to shows!”
However, going to shows vs. playing shows are two completely different sides of the same world. “Shows create nervous anxiety,” Niko and Jordan both agree. "It’s like this before every one - you get pent up and then you can breathe again, pent up and then you can breathe again.” There’s no way around that sweaty palm feeling; everyone gets stage-fright to some degree (even The Frights). Nonetheless, there are things that you can do to prepare. Jordan advises “a good meal before playing,” and Niko adds, “Captain Crunch everyday! But in all seriousness, being sober on stage is important too, to play your best.”
Like most great musicians, the members of Paper Days aren’t done growing and furthering their dreams into reality. They hope to release their debut album with the backing of a record label, and expand to new audiences. One of our team members, Autumn, would also like to thank Niko Sitaras for sharing his water with her during their set and “saving her from dehydration.” But from everyone here at Pure Nowhere, we want to thank you for being such kind and amazing people. Best wishes for the future!!