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Saturday, November 26, 2022

Local band Driveaway explores rock sound in new single 'Wishing Well'

The song will be available for streaming Friday

<p>A sketch of the Florida-based band Driveaway.</p>

A sketch of the Florida-based band Driveaway.

Gainesville indie band Driveaway welcomes a new and innovative style of music, a shift evident in its upcoming track “Wishing Well.” 

Following the release of their previous six-track EP, “Feel Better Soon,” Driveaway is releasing a new single available for streaming and download Friday. The band has strayed from their usual pop genre, instead opting for a more rock ‘n’ roll sound.

Driveaway — formerly signed to the student-run record label Swamp Records — has been together since 2018, starting out as a Gainesville-based band comprised of aspiring college musicians. Following their graduation from UF, Driveaway continues to produce their own music. 

The band’s now focused on ushering in new opportunities in music and their personal lives — a feat that requires members to let go of past obstacles and the exhaustion that comes with them. 

Tanner Ropp, Driveaway’s 23-year-old bassist, wrote some of the lyrics for “Wishing Well.” 

He said the single was inspired by the melancholy of everyday life, as well as the practice of feigning happiness when struggling. It’s a song inspired by the angst one feels when they’re tired of pretending to be someone they’re not, Ropp said. 

“You get to this point where you don’t want to be a person anymore because you don’t want to put so much energy into presenting yourself a certain way,” Ropp said. “Not everybody feels positive all the time, and that’s okay.” 

Guitarist Kyle Tapley, 26, said the single was also a product of the band’s recent interest in a heavier rock ‘n’ roll sound. 

A key difference between “Wishing Well” and previous Driveaway tracks is that it was all recorded in a single take, Tapley said.

The band usually spends countless hours re-recording tracks in order to achieve something close to perfection, Tapley said. However, no matter how many re-recordings they went through, he said nothing beat the sound of the first take — so the original recording will be the one listeners hear when they stream “Wishing Well.”

While Ropp is the band’s bassist, the lead guitar part of the single was actually recorded by Ropp rather than Tapley. Tapley said he tried to recreate the sound but ultimately found it impossible. 

“Tanner just nailed this beautiful rock lead guitar part and it was so perfect the first time,” Tapley said.

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While Driveaway released their EP “Feel Better Soon” in May, Ropp said the band doesn’t have any immediate plans to release its next music collection. 

“I think going forward in the future, we're probably going to progress more with that model of releasing singles that are parts of EPs,” he said. “We don’t have any plans for a full-length album at this time, but we do have many, many singles ready to go.”

As far as future aspirations for the band, Tapley said he hopes to reach a larger audience and perform for bigger crowds. He said the band’s overall goal is to rely solely on their music as financial support, allowing he and his bandmates more time to dedicate to their music. 

Ropp said he’s interested in expanding Driveaway’s fan base. 

The biggest thrill of performing, he said, is getting to talk to fans after shows about the impact of the band’s music and how audiences relate to the songs. It’s refreshing and validating to know their music can help others, especially because most lyrics are inspired by the band’s personal experiences and emotions, Ropp said. 

“It's like, ‘Wow, the music’s working!’” he said. “It's connecting me to these people who I've never met in my life, and I think that is the ultimate goal for me.” 

 “Wishing Well” will be available on streaming platforms Friday. 

Contact Luna Boales at lboales@alligator.org or follow her on Twitter at @LunaBoales.

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Luna Boales

Luna Boales is a third-year journalism major and avenue staff reporter. When she's not reporting, you'll find her writing poetry, meditating or reading. 


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