Theresa's Dream Interview Day 2
In day 2 of my interview with Theresa's Dream front man Vincent Velice, I wander deeper into uncharted territory. Together we explore the dark and tormenting past and or present that help in painting the lyrical masterpieces for the band.
So between the two band names, besides the music, is there a difference between the meanings of the names themselves.
Vincent - Definition.
As in the story behind the name?
Vincent - Exactly. See our original name was just a um, typical kind of band name that you would expect out of a high school garage band. You know. When you were at that point where you barely learned to play your first notes on your guitar and suddenly you're out there putting your first band together. But I didn't come up with the original name. I was brought in to the band later.
And who came up with Theresa's Dream?
Vincent - Yeah that was me.
Can you elaborate on the reason or the story behind that name?
Vincent - (silent) well, I never really talked about it before. To anyone, ever, besides the band. So this is kind of hard. See the story is, growing up, my older sister, Theresa, was the one there for me, protecting me, watching out for me against the assholes who used to push my ass around. Then there was the divorce. And just like that, she was gone. Taken from me by my father across the fuxking country. And it was her dream that my dream of making music would happen.
Did you guys stay in contact?
Vincent - No. Because there is no Theresa.
So the name is just a written story?
Vincent - The story is basically real. Almost. But it wasn't Theresa's dream, or even a Theresa. His name was Noah. He was my real encouragement. He was my inspiration for even wanting to make music. He didn't necessarily protect me from getting my ass beat in school. I mean that happened regardless. They all called me a "fag" although I never had ca me out. Not til this very moment right here.
Wow, I don't really know what to say. I never would have thought.
Vincent - That was kind of the point. He was out and open about who he was. I wasn't and I made him conceal that fact. We had been going out for about a year and a half. We always talked on the low and saw each other privately. The first song I had ever written was for him. But like the story goes, it wasn't an actual divorce that separated us. His father, the only one he hadn't come out to, walked in on us sharing a moment with each other, being "gay" and he just lost it. He took him from me across the damn country. But not even that separated us.
Vincent - Death passed us by, right between us. And that was the final move. He took his own life. But thats not even the worst part of it all. Up until now, until just now, I concealed his existence. It was an insult to his life and to his death. And within all that I concealed the real me.
But why lock away such a deep significant root in your life?
Vincent - The judgement man. It's real and its alive. And it fuxks me from both ends. I'm a singer for a metal band. With this comes this image and this front that I have to keep up with. All these great icons already had achieved such a high level of fame before coming out. They were already loved by their fans who only continued to do so. But it's harder trying to achieve that same level after having been out. I feel like they're not going to take me seriously. They'll be like, " Yeah that bands pretty good but that dudes a fuxkin fag." These are some hardcore dudes man.
And where does the other judgement come from?
Vincent - The side where the judgement is even worse, the gay community itself. These guys are so caught up with this desired image of a guy and I'm like way the fuxk over here. They won't even look in my direction. And the fact that I sing for a metal band doesn't fly well with these queens. I'm that darker side of the rainbow they just won't accept.
How would you know this if you're not openly out?
Vincent - Shit like apps make it easier to stay locked in the closet. But I don't want to be locked in there anymore and you can hear that outcry in a couple of the songs. I'm literally yelling to break out and be free.
And are any of the songs about him?
Vincent - Of course, but not in the way you'd think. They're more about my guilt and the torment and just so much pain. The guilt for feeling like I was just abandoning him each day I denied his existence. I feel so responsible for his death over anything else you just wouldn't understand. Then there's the torment of literally being torn apart from each other. Wondering if I would ever be able to see him again. And of course , the pain of losing him for good. (Silent)
Do these emotions ever affect you on stage?
Vincent - Oh absolutely. The first time actually was during one of our practice sessions. I completely fell apart singing "Black Tuesday" which is about the day I found out I had lost him for good. Of course after doing that song I had finally opened up to the band. On stage I feel it each time, but I feel safer surrounded by the fans and it's easier to channel that emotion. But i sometimes just feel awful because I know a lot of these chicks just adore me. You can clearly see it in their faces. (Laughs)
How did the band take it?
Vincent - Well coming out was probably the best thing for the band itself. The first one I had come out to was actually Ryan, the original guitarist besides Mike. He didn't take very well to it at all. I thought we had become pretty close but man was I wrong. He left the band, didn't tell the other guys why, but told me he couldn't play with someone like me in the band. And he convinced the original bassist to go with him. But I don't hold anything against him because we got Mitch (guitars) and Eric (bass) out of it. And they are amazing artist in addition to Mike (guitars) and Ricky (drums). Every single one of those guys couldn't have been more accepting. Mike and I in fact have grown closer in our friendship and our music has so much more level to it now. It's amazing. It's so organic
So now that everything is out in the open, do you plan on changing the band name to fit the actual story? Do you think some of the fans feel a bit lied to?
Vincent - No of course not. We are Theresa's Dream and thats what we introduced ourselves to the world as. There's nothing else. I think it'd be more of a crime to take that away from our fans because a lot of them have already identified themselves to that name. And Theresa's Dream, that name fits someone else's life, someone else's story. So the name is strictly for them. And the name will stick specifically for them.
That was an emotional and very poweful journey for Vincent. You can clearly see it in his face as he told his story. That is all for day 2 of my interview. Stick around for the final day of my project with Theresa's Dream, guitarist Michael Rojas will be joining us to help give deeper insight of the songs individually. Thanks for reading.