The Atlanta-based Shadowboxers have a passion for captivating lyrics, tight harmonies, and soulful vocals. Founding members Scott Schwartz, Matt Lipkins, and Adam Hoffman experienced an almost-instantaneous musical compatibility when they first started jamming. This young band’s unified sound has an R&B-soaked, smart perspective replete with an abundance of vocal talent and songwriting skill. In the short time they’ve been playing together, The Shadowboxers have found a collective voice that is intelligent, soulful, and catchy.
The Shadowboxers are bringing their talents to Eddie’s Attic this Thursday, and Andrew Chatwood had a chance to speak with the band before the show.
What is the strangest thing a fan has done for you or at your show?
I once had a woman ask me to put a Shadowboxers sticker on her breast. She was quite old and quite drunk and though I was sure she was bluffing, all of a sudden her breast was just hanging there out of her shirt. It was a clean delivery. No bubbles or creases. She tucked her breast back in her shirt and walked away. Also, my parents were at that show. Saw the whole thing.
What is the funniest moment you have had as an artist?
If you could describe your music in one word, what would it be?
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
We haven’t nailed anything down yet as a finalized band tradition, but a few tours ago we did try something out that I sincerely wish we bring back for inspiration: we called it “Living For The City’s.” Basically we’d all get in a dressing room, blast Stevie Wonder’s “Living For The City”, and start pumping out sit-ups when the vocals kick in. We’d rest during the interlude (“New York City. Just like I pictured it, skyscrapers and everythang!”), and then continue doing sit-ups through the end of the song. Shirts were optional, respect and determination were not.
How do you connect with a crowd?
I think we make it clear that our shows are about five guys who make music together not only because we love and respect each others playing, but also because we love and respect each other as human beings. If you think that sounds like a corny, cookie-cutter answer, I can’t blame you, but it’s the honest truth. Every show is exciting for us so we connect with the crowd by wearing all this energy on our sleeves. During songs, we’re trying to surprise each other and make each other laugh, and in between songs we’re pretty much doing the same thing. I think at the end of the day, people relate to what they see on stage and that in turn makes them feel like they’re a part of the show (which they really are)!
How did you decide on your band name?
When we started playing together in college, we had performed a few shows as Matt Lipkins, Adam Hoffman, and Scott Schwartz. Sometimes when you use the band members’ names it sounds cool (Crosby, Stills, and Nash), but in our case, Lipkins, Hoffman, and Schwartz sounds more like a law firm than a band. So we knew early on we needed a band name. The three of us and a friend of ours made lists of potential names, all of us trying to incorporate elements of rhythm and soul. We settled on The Shadowboxers, which we thought best captured those elements, as well as imply a sense of preparation.
What is the best way to write music?
With an open mind, and a confidence that you are capable of producing good work. If you approach songwriting this way, then you don’t have to summon the pieces to the song. They will naturally come, and your job is to edit them.
Catch The Shadowboxers at Eddie’s Attic, this Thursday January 16th!