When did Stems and Seeds form and who is in the band?
The band first formed in 2007. Like most bands, our line-up has changed a few times and we feel that the combination we have now works quite well. The band is Mark Lauer on guitar, keys, uke and lead & backing vocals; Don Garbinski on drums and backing vocals; Vince Rockey on bass, lead & backing vocals; myself, Krista Doran on lead & backing vocals and percussion and Rick Doran on lead & backing vocals. We would be hasty to not also include our awesome sound man, Andy Belcher who keeps us sounding great, no matter where we play.
What is it like to be part of a band with your husband?
Well honestly, it can be both awesome and trying at times. Working with your spouse can be difficult at any job and this is no different. We both have very strong personalities, but even with that, we make it work. Our mutual love and respect for each other is a big reason for that. Plus, I think Rick has finally realized that what I say goes! Haha! But in all seriousness, we do make a lot of sacrifices to do this, and when it comes right down to it, we love it and our commitment to both the band and each other is very strong.
What style of music do you play?
We stick to mostly Classic Rock, but we also sprinkle in Reggae, Blues, Motown and Funk because we love to make people MOVE! One thing we are known for, is the feeling we put into the music we play, so we choose songs very carefully. We want the people who have taken the time to come and see us feel the music too, so this is why we stick to what we know and what we truly love to hear and play.
What are your favorite places to play?
Since I book all the dates, I try to keep it to the select places where we have developed great relationships. I also take in to consideration what our fans and friends like, because after all, we always need to consider them in everything we do. They are WHY we do this. We stopped playing at a few places, simply because our fans told us they didn’t like the place or because it may have been too far to drive home from after a night of drinking and partying. Right now our main spots are Curran’s in Bensalem, which we play every First Friday of every month, The Buck Hotel in Feasterville, Steam Pub in Southampton, Reedy’s Tavern and Nick’s Roast Beef in NE Philly, The Five Four, Bailey’s and The Roadhouse in Levittown. We are talking to a few other rooms now, as I book for 2016. We stick to playing just in NE Philly and Bucks County for the most part too, since this is where we all live. We all like to indulge a bit at shows too, so it is safer all around for us to stay local.
If you could play anywhere, where would it be?
If it were up to me (and I am sure that each of my guys would have a different answer) but me personally, I would love to play on a beach somewhere, with all our friends, family and fans there, just enjoying music with everyone joining in, drinking and having fun together! That is pretty much how our shows are now, but without the beach!
What do you think is the best thing about being part of the local Philly music scene?
I would have to say the camaraderie. I/we have been very blessed in meeting and becoming very good friends with a lot of other musicians in the area. We help and support each other, advise each other and share a lot of funny stories!
Do you offer private parties?
Yes! And we love playing them, too! We actually play a good number of weddings, block parties, birthday, anniversary and oddly enough, even divorce parties! People like having us do these kinds of events because not only is the band really good, we are very entertaining, too. It is one thing to have a band playing good music, but it is a whole other area of expertise when you talk about entertaining a crowd and that is something we do EXTREMELY well. We connect with the crowd; we get them involved and because we don’t play the typical cover band songs, we bring back memories by playing what everyone doesn’t expect. We have great chemistry on stage and people always notice and compliment us on how much fun we are having with each other. People seek us out to play their parties for these exact reasons. Having a live band can either make or break a party, and what we bring to the table is what everyone wants.
What else would you like people to know about Stems and Seeds?
We really enjoy making music together. We are all very close friends as part of, and even outside of, the band. We work very well together and whether it be a rehearsal or a show, we have so much fun together! We don’t take ourselves too seriously; we have no ideas of grandeur or think we are “rock stars.” We try to put on the best show possible, while making the people who come to see us feel comfortable, happy and content with the music they hear. It’s all really just about having a good time, playing good music and enjoying these times with good people.
To keep up on where and when Stems and Seeds are playing, check out and like them on Facebook: (they’ll also be regulars on our event/entertainment calendar)