The crowd grew anxious as they awaited the band’s arrival. A slight Facebook invite mishap left new fans wondering if they would ever have the opportunity to see the band Hot Mess play. But the crowd stayed. Eventually, as the band stepped on stage for the the first time, the large crowd was eager to hear what they had to offer.
Fortunately, Hot Mess delivered. The combination of voices and instruments lead to an irresistible combination. Most in the audience were either singing or dancing to covers of their favorite tunes, including both Adele’s Rumor Has It as well as Melissa Etheridge’s I’m the Only One.
What may surprise those who were fortunate enough to attend the show at Spyners is that the band only had 4 practices (well, pending who you ask, it was 6 but not all members were in attendance for 2 of those practices). When asked how they felt about only having 4-6 practices before their first performance, Rosie Aybar (drums) stated, “I felt very comfortable with it…I think we were ready for it. We were very excited for it in general.”
The three members I spoke to (Rosie, Missy Webber (rhythm guitar), and Meghan (vocals) tell a story of how the band was rather haphazardly put together. All point to the help of Sam Hamilton, whom they dubbed as their band manager. As Missy says, “[Sam] was like, ‘You have a lot of drive and I heard you’re in a band, so you should run a band.'” Both Missy and Sam then approached Rosie, but at separate times independently of each other. While Rosie asked Megan who then asked Kate Jaeger (bass & keyboard), Sam asked Sarah Buchanan (vocals) and Little P. (rhythm guitar and vocals).
For a band with little experience and musicians that had never played together, the result was rather astounding. Megan cited some equipment issues, but that aside, the band gelled together seamlessly. That showed when Little P happened by and shouted over the crowd to Rosie and Missy, “I love you guys!” Meghan added later in the evening, “Everyone’s just really sweet, works hard, and works together.” In talking to the group, it’s evident that they both love playing music and playing with each other.
They also didn’t shy away from identifying themselves as Lesbians. As Missy said about lesbian bands that play to lesbians, “Who is? Where are they at? Do you see this community? The community’s out there! Let’s f***ing play to them! ” Megan echoed that statement by saying, “if you’re not hanging at [a popular lesbian bar], it feels like you’re not really hanging with your community. It’s really nice to have an outlet that don’t require you to get blacked out. You’re just hanging out, having a good time.”
Hot Mess attributed the large crowd that night to one individual’s efforts; Sam Hamilton. Sam has bridged many different lesbian circles, including the L Stop team as well as CMSA sports (including Football and Softball). According to Rosie, “We owe a lot to sam and we want to thank her as a band.” “Sam has been unbelievable. Never ending. Never stopping. Always working…she just promotes the shit out of us and that’s amazing,” Missy gushed.
Sam had just as many amazing things to say about the band. She said, “The first thing they said is, ‘We don’t want the money.’ So what we’re going to do is a lot of benefits for the community.” Any other proceeds they earn will go into equipment, such as a new PA, but the band doesn’t plan personal gain.
The entire band would like to thank their sponsors for making their opening night a success: CMSA, The LStop, Sam Hamilton Photography, and Spyners.
Be sure to catch their next performance during CMSA’s 2nd Annual Women’s Social Party, January 28th at Joe’s Bar on Weed St. The party is free for CMSA members, with a $5 cover for non-members (benefits go to Alisha Brennon).
Stay up-to-date on all Hot Mess’s performances by liking their facebook page.
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A transplant from the snow and mountains of Upstate NY (why, yes, there IS an entire state above NYC!), Tina moved to Chicago in 2005. Since then, she’s taken full advantage of Chicago’s sports scene, participating in rugby, volleyball, and hockey – just to name a few. Her first love, however, is soccer. She's proud to have participated in both the 2006 and 2010 Gay Games as well as the 2009 Out Games. In addition to sports, Tina enjoys traveling (she tries to cross the atlantic at least once a year). Tina is a ‘Jackie of all trades’, so prepare for the unexpected!