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10 questions with Roster McCabe's Alex Steele

The current lineup for Roster McCabe includes Alex Steele (vocals, keyboards); Michael Daum (lead guitar); Drew Preiner (guitars, synths, vocals), Jeff Peterson (drums, vocals) and Scott Muellenberg (bass, vocals). Submitted Photo

Minneapolis-based "electro-rock" band Roster McCabe will perform at Zorbaz in Detroit Lakes this Saturday, Dec. 15 at 9:30 p.m.

This reporter recently had the opportunity to sit down with the band's lead vocalist, Alex Steele, and ask him a few questions. He provided some interesting answers:

Could you tell me a little bit about your band? How did you all end up performing together?

I met Mike and Drew in college and we played for fun at bars and venues around campus, and as we became more serious about making it our full time career the band grew and evolved until what you see now. 

How long has the band been together, and are you all original members?

The band as you see us now as been together since 2008. We have had a few line up changes from when we first started but everyone in the band is just as much Roster McCabe as anyone who has ever played with us.

Describe the band's sound. Does it fit into a specific musical genre, or is it more of a fusion of different styles?

We call our music as Electro-Rock. That describes more so the tonal qualities of the music, rather than the actual genre. We play a lot of different styles of music or span what you could call different genres, but we just call it music.

How do you think your sound has evolved?

As our understand of music and how to create what we hear in our heads grows and evolves, so does our music. 

What would you say your musical influences are?

We all come from a huge variation in musical influences, which is why our sound is what it is. We influence each other a lot and are always listening to each others music whether it be new, old, pop inspired or totally obscure from the norm. Everything influences us in some way.

How do you create the songs you perform? Do you write your own music, or use other songwriters?

We write all of our own material, usually in collaboration with each other at some point. We also choose to play cover songs sometimes that we enjoy and that are songs not often heard by others. We try to pick cover songs with think will get a fun reaction out of people, but we are an original band and focus on creating our own music. 

How much time do you spend touring? Do you perform primarily in the Midwest, or all over the U.S.?

This year, 2012, has seen nearly 200 performances from Roster McCabe, all the way from New York City to Idaho Falls, Idaho, and as far south as Fayetteville, Arkansas, and literally everywhere in between. 

Have you performed at Zorbaz, or any other venues in Detroit Lakes before? Do you have any places that you like to visit while you're here, or any favorite hangouts in the area?

This will be I believe our third or fourth appearance at Zorbaz in Detroit Lakes. We have also been there performing at the 10,000 Lakes Music Festival in 2008 and 2009.

Unfortunately we haven't had much time to hang out outside of the performances. We did get a chance to go tubing once!

How did you first get into music? Is it something you always wanted to do, or was performing a passion that evolved as you got older? What is it about music that keeps you interested in performing?

For me personally, music is the great equalizer. Even if you speak different languages or are completely deaf and dont speak in an auditory sense, you can still feel music. It has a way of connecting people that nothing else does that I've ever seen and that's why I continue to do it.

I grew up with music in my home. There was always a lot of singing and music being played and it always made me happy to move with the rhythm and sing along. I have always wanted to play music and so performing has become the best outlet for me. It's the people and music's ability to change people's frowns to smiles and wash away sadness, anger, and fear with a simple melody or phrase song. 

Is there anywhere that people can go online to sample some of your music?

All of our music is available on our website to stream or download at "Wow! Neat Sounds!" is our most recent release and the most true to what our current sound is.

We also have a Twitter account ( and Facebook page ( There will be a lot more coming from Roster McCabe in 2013!

Follow Detroit Lakes Newspapers reporter Vicki Gerdes on Twitter at @VickiLGerdes.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454