Humble, appreciative and energetic are three words that come to mind when thinking of the foursome that compose the band Navar. The band’s name is the reverse spelling of a girl named Ravan, with whom lead singer and guitarist Pat Barry had a 7th grade romance. The name serves to remind the band of an innocent time in their lives that will always ground them, yet continue to inspire.

Originally from Fillmore, N.Y., Barry brothers Pat and Ben, the bassist, in addition to guitarist and sax player Mike Yudichak and drummer Tim “Skippy” Lindhome have all quit their day jobs in support of their second album, “A Touch of Class,” and to shake the rock community. The Campus Times had a chance to talk to Pat Barry and Yudichak before their show at Milestones on Sept. 2.

Campus Times: You come from upstate New York, not too far away from here. Did you come to Rochester as teenagers to check out the music scene?

Mike Yudichak: I went to college in Geneseo, and I’d come up here and see some bands.

Pat Barry: When I was younger I wanted to be a professional wrestler, and when I was in junior high I liked hip-hop music. It wasn’t until I went to see Weezer and I met Rivers [Cuomo] that my life changed, and I fell in love with rock music. I knew that I wanted to do this. Then, later, I saw Third Eye Blind, and that got me into song writing.

CT: How would you describe the music community up here compared with other areas?

PB: For us there hasn’t been a scene, but we have tried to make one. There are a lot of people in bands, but where we are from, which is in rural New York, the only way to make money is to play covers. That’s a good way to get started, but most people get sucked into it.

CT: Is that how you got started?

PB: We put out an album and pretty much went half and half. We played covers that we thought people would like and worked our music in there.

MY: In the cities, music is saturated, but where we are from it’s rural and they embrace us there. Radio stations especially, because a lot of people aren’t doing what we are doing.

CT: Tell me about how you all came together to form Navar.

PB: I sang with a band for a year, but they never really moved on from covers after [that], so I quit and started writing songs on my own. I started a Web site that had my music on it and built some fans that way. Six months later, after I had recorded some acoustic songs, a friend and I decided to start a band. My brother Ben joined a few days later.

The kid that I started with went to college, since it wasn’t something for him to stick around for. I knew Skippy – he was a friend of Adam, our manager. A woman I worked with told me that her son was a good drummer, and I kind of brushed it off and thought, “yeah, I bet he is.” It turned out he was good, and that’s how Tim entered the band. The most important thing is that we are all brothers in this together. We may fight, but at the end of the night, we are going to rock out and worry about our issues later.

CT: What’s most important about your music to you?

PB: For me personally, the words that I write make me mentally healthy. If I’m upset, they are like my psychiatrist. If I feel really mentally charged about something good or bad, I sit down and write about it and it makes sense.

If it’s a bad experience, I find value in the fact that I get a song out of it, even if I feel bad about the experience itself.

CT: What are your ambitions as a band?

PB: I want to work as hard as I possibly can and not have the effort be the reason why I don’t obtain my goals.

I want to be able to tour the country, maybe even the world, and have people excited to hear what we have to say.

MY: If I could do this and perform every night, that’s what I want. Of course, it would be nice to play in front of more people.

CT: How would you define your music to our readers who have never heard it?

PB: It’s very similar to mid-’90s and late -’90s rock. It’s melody, hook-driven and it’s emotional.

CT: Who are some of your musical influences?

MY: I’ve always been a fan of The Beatles, Pink Floyd, and now I like newer bands like Modest Mouse, Ween and The Shins.

PB: I like a lot of singer/songwriter stuff, like Jeff Buckley is my hero. [I also like] Elliot Smith, Our Lady Peace, Third Eye Blind and Eve Six.

CT: Who has been your favorite band to open for thus far?

PB: Third Eye Blind, because they were the band that got me into song writing, and then I was opening for them. It was huge.

CT: If you could go on tour with any living artist or band, who would it be?

MY: U2 or Coldplay. We’re so desperate to get onto a national touring act right now with any band that has a crowd that we could gain fans off of.

CT: What do you want the students at UR to know about you?

PB: Just that we are genuine and we are really doing this for the right reasons.

Katz can be reached at jkatz@campustimes.org.



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