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Concord Music Hall
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Hello, My Name Is Gina

| June 28, 2012 | 0 Comments

IE: How well do you guys know each other?
Gina Bloom
: I was playing drums for a band, and three of the others were in an alt-country band. We happened to be playing the same gig, they saw me sing during soundcheck, and approached me to put this band together after the show.

IE: So you were a drummer? Have you always been? Normally people are the drummer simply because they have a drum kit.
GB
: Up until The Congregation, I only ever played drums in bands. I had pretty bad stagefright for most of my life, and playing drums was a way for me to be in the background. I always knew I wanted to sing, but I would get the shakes. It took this band to pull me out of it.

IE: You have a musical family?
GB
: My dad [Bill Bloom] is a songwriter – he wrote for Philadelphia International Records [Harold Melvin, The O’Jays] in the ’70s. It’s funny, I was home a couple weeks ago and my sister was making fun of the fact that she has a tape-player in the car, so she salvaged this tape out of my dad’s house and it was a demo of something he’d written back then – and, as he’s working, you can hear me as a baby in the background talking to him and crying. That was what our childhood was like: my dad was always at the piano.

IE: So if The Congregation get successful, people will say, “She had a lot to live up to.”
GB
: Yeah. I used to always tout my dad’s gold record, but now my band’s opening for Wilco!

IE: Exactly how did that come together?
GB
: It was completely out of the blue. A couple months ago, I was like, “We need to get some shows. We have this record coming out – we need to get in front of some people.” We weren’t really doing much. I was at work, and I checked the band e-mail, and the subject line was “How do we get in contact with you?!” It was from Jam Productions, so I called back, and it was all this stuff – a festival, XRT’s 40th anniversary – and then, “We’ve already booked Wilco and Andrew Bird: would you like to be on the bill?” I started shaking so much I had to hold the phone with two hands, and then e-mail the band saying, “This is not a joke!”

The Congregation open for Wilco and Andrew Bird at Fifth Third Ballpark in Geneva, IL on July 8th. “Right Now Everything,” the title track from their forthcoming album, is available now. Q&A by Steve Forstneger.

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