“Girl In A Coma is just as good as any dude band.”
By Jason Tanamor
Fans of The Smiths are in for a treat with the band, Girl In A Coma. The all girl rock band, which hails from San Antonio, Texas, was inspired by the English alternative band when coming up with the group’s name. “The name comes from ‘Girlfriend in a Coma,’ a song from The Smiths. We wanted to pay homage to the band,” Jenn Alva said. With vocals, courtesy of front woman Nina Diaz, being compared to greats such as Patsy Cline and Morrissey, it is only a matter of time the band will break out and hit it big.
Zoiks! Online recently had the pleasure of speaking with Alva, bass player of the indie rock band.
Q – OK so who are the members?
A - Nina Diaz - Vocals and Guitar, Phanie Diaz - Drums, Jenn Alva- Bass
Q – Girl In A Coma consists of band members who have known each other for years. How much does the chemistry of the band affect the music?
A - Our relationship with each other is strong. Phanie and Nina are sisters, so that already is an advantage. The way it affects the music is that we are able to communicate when we write songs. It also shows up on stage. With good communication we are able to compromise and continue to do what we love – which is playing live.
Q – When writing songs, is it a band effort or individual effort that gets assembled by the band?
A - Nina starts it by writing the song, I’ll come in and write the bass lines, and Phanie adds drums.
Q – Have there been any disagreements when writing songs?
A - No, if anything it is just the arrangement or length. We are usually satisfied with everyone’s input.
Q – What do you want fans to take away with them when leaving a Girl In A Coma concert?
A - We want them all to have had the best time and hopefully they come back to see us play again. We want them to have the feeling Phanie and I used to get when we would see a local band or traveling act coming through San Antonio.
Babes in Toyland, L7, and The Toadies did that to us. We left reminiscing about each part of the show. We both couldn't wait to see them live again.
Q – Back in the day, when the Internet wasn’t around, bands relied on airplay and touring to get notoriety. How much of the online landscape has helped the band gain recognition?
A - The Internet has increased word of mouth and fans are able to enjoy our videos, and fans’ videos due to YouTube. They are able to keep up with us through Twitter. There are many pros about the Internet and of course, the cons of illegal downloading, which really blow my mind. It just doesn't seem like a priority to stop these sites that make them easily available. I think it should be up to the artist if they wish to give away a song, the whole album, whatever. The fact that the artist has absolutely no control over it is injustice.
Q – What’s the mindset of the band in terms of gaining more visibility to a wider group of people? How do you go about doing this?
A - Well of course, the more fans the better. We aim for no specific type of person. Anyone who chooses to enjoy our music is wonderful in our eyes. We have accumulated fans by the help of the Internet and the old fashion way of touring the states like crazy, which we will continue to do.
Q – How difficult is it to be women rockers in this business?
A - It’s hard but we tend not to care sometimes. We do what we want and we know we are just as good as any dude band. Sometimes we are in our own little world. Our shows are growing and all that matters when we play is us and the fans. If we happen to inspire other females that is a bonus to us.
Q – Do you think there is an unfair misconception about female rock bands?
A - Of course, it's all there, “Females can't play,” and “All girl groups sound the same.” To me it’s such an old fashioned way of thinking. Even the double standard plays its role in these ignorant thoughts. The girls and I say if you are going to make judgments like that on us, well they don't have to be a fan of ours.
Q – Is there a current tour or album you want to promote?
A - We just released our second album “Trio B.C.” this summer and have two videos online for the songs “Static Mind,” and “El Monte.” There is another national tour in the works at the end of September through early November. I think Myspace.com/girlsinacoma (even though it is somehow out of date to use) is still the best way to see our up and coming tour dates. Along with Girlinacoma.com, Facebook.com/girlinacoma, and of course Twitter.