At a college that students attend expressly to become musicdom’s biggest stars, the oddly irresistible, wildly original Indie/Pop band No Coast came together almost by accident. The rest could be history.
1. True or false: You hated each other at the beginning.
Manny: Maybe hate is too strong a word.
Tate: I actually, ugh, I don’t know, I didn’t hate you, but my first impression of Manny
was…let’s just say, he was good with the ladies, and he was getting with my ex-girlfriend’s
roommate. And I just remember thinking, “Who in the heck is this guy?”
Manny: Yeah, you weren’t fond of me.
2. But now you’re…kind of inseparable, no?
Tate: What happened was that my roommate freshman year and I didn’t get along, to put it
mildly, and I could not stand to stay in the same room as him anymore, so I went down the
hall to the room of a buddy one day, and there was Manny.
Manny: We just hung out in that room for like two weeks, and we were throwing out ideas
and vibing about different musicians and bands that we loved since we were kids, and all of a sudden, it just kind of clicked.
Tate: Our musical tastes were almost identical
Manny: Vampire Weekend, The 1975, Phoenix, Washed Out. We loved all the same little
secret niche artists.
Tate: We talked over the summer about what we wanted to do with our time at Belmont.
Then we came back in the fall, and we went to my studio in a little suburb of Nashville, and
we made two songs in one day. And we were like, “Wait, this has to be like a thing now. This
is sick. This needs to be a band.”
Manny: Yeah, so, one day not long after that, I came home from class, and I heard this dude
just shredding upstairs. I went to his room and said, “Hey, you want to come over tonight and just jam?” He was like, “Yeah, sure,” and he brought all of his equipment over, and that night we wrote, “All in My Head.” That was Tanner.
Tate: Literally, the first time all three of us were together we wrote our first single, which
3. How’d the song happen?
Tate: We were set up in my old studio, which used to be a contractor’s office space with all
the cubicles ripped out, and I just started popping through different patches.
Manny: It was really simple. The keyboard. One mic. But lots of stuff for Tanner. Tanner is a
very technical guitarist, so he has an absurd amount of pedals.
Tate: He grew up playing in a church.
Manny: Yeah, he’s a church guitarist.
Tate: It’s so funny, whenever we go on tour anywhere, guitarists from other bands will be
like, “Yo, why is your setup so concise?” And he’s like, “Oh, I played for a church,” and
they’re always, “Ohhh, that makes sense.”
4. Your first show was kind of a bomb, wasn’t it?
Manny: It was in front of, what, 50 people?
Tate: Yeah. It was crap, it was an awful show. We were way out of place. It was a bunch of
prog rock bands, and everyone was like, “Who are these guys playing like straight-up pop
Manny: And it was the worst venue ever.
Tate: But it showed us that we could do it, you know? Because we weren’t really performers
then. Tanner was the only one of us that had regularly played music live. Me and Manny, our
whole lives, we just wrote music. Anyway, we did it. We didn’t suck that bad.
5. But a year later, you went up against 35 bands, got picked to be one of five, and then went on to win The Battle of the Bands at one of the most prestigious music schools in the nation. How the heck?
Manny: We applied with the only two songs that we had at the time. We had three weeks,
and we just practiced, practiced, practiced, every single day. Then, the day arrived. It’s this
massive stage, with this huge outdoor lawn. There’s like 2500 people in the crowd. It was
Tate: Yeah, we had a video crew with us, we all had crazy outfits on, it was like this whole
6. We need to pause to talk about the crazy outfits, I’m afraid.
Tate: Now, looking back at the photos, I’m like, “Why was I wearing all white? Am I like
Michael Jackson or something?”
Manny: Tate has a tendency to wear all white all the time.
Tate: Recently, I’ve switched to all black.
7. While you were up there, did you feel like you were winning?
Manny: We were the first band to go up because our sound check was so intricate.
Tate: We have around 25 inputs when we go on stage because we have so much stuff going
on at the same time. Our sound check took an hour, and they could not get my keyboard to
work, and I was losing my shit.
Manny: Tate has a lot of inputs by himself because he has the SPD sample pad.
Tate: Yeah, so I have this pad that I hit that triggers samples, like little shouts or claps or
whatever. And then I’ve got two synthesizers, and then Manny’s got a guitar, we had an
acoustic guitar, we had a bass guitar, we had the trumpet, synth bass, and we also had our
backing tracks too. All in all, it comes out to like 21, 22 inputs, and the sound guy couldn’t
keep up with it.
Tate: At that point, we were pretty sure the show was going to suck. But we just went for it.
And after you play, you have no idea how you did. Everyone around you is going to tell you
that you did great, but you really have no idea. We have a video of me coming off the stage,
hugging our manager, and saying, “I couldn’t hear myself at all!” But apparently, it worked
out ok, because we won. The band with two dudes who suck at music and a bunch of other
random guys who are super technical, and two songs, so.
Manny: And that was our second show ever.
8. Why do you think you won?
Tate: Because we cared. We really care about each other and we really care about music.
From the beginning, this has been a very serious project for us.
Manny: No one practiced as much as we did.
9. What’s up with your name?
Tate: Me and Manny, we originate from the Midwest, and Nashville is not LA or New York.
There’s this kind of misconception, I think, that’s luckily being erased by streaming
platforms like Quadio, SoundCloud, and Spotify, where people think you have to live in New
York or LA to have creative energy, when really Nashville has been completely left out of
the conversation, especially with Indie music.
Manny: Basically, we’re saying you don’t need to be on a coast city to be something.
10. You guys write music, you’re about to do a national tour, you both wait tables, you go to school. There must be something you do for fun.
Manny: Should I answer honestly?
Tate: Manny plays Fortnite quite a bit, to a level where I’m going to straight up say, it’s
Manny: I understand that. The first step to fixing a problem is –
Tate: I feel like you’re in rehab right now!
Manny: -- Is understanding that you have a problem. Also, FIFA.
Tate: I don’t play FIFA that much! Come on, son.
Check out No Coast below!