8 Things You Should Know About Sweet Nobody
Southern California based foursome Sweet Nobody are sometimes referred to as an indie pop band, but frontwoman Joy Deyo offers up a different description – “I usually say bubblegum music with graveyard lyrics.”
Joy, who handles guitar and vocals, started the band with her now husband Brian Dishon (drums / guitar / vocals), who are joined by Casey Snyder (guitar), and Adam Nolan (bass).
The marriage of music came well before the marriage of Joy and Brian, although nuptials were involved in the creation of Sweet Nobody. The band’s origin story dates back to a cousin of Joy’s asking the two of them to perform at her wedding. According to Brian, “That was kinda like the first time, I think, we played music together.”
Joy fills out their relationship timeline a bit more, adding, “We’d known each other for about ten years before we actually got married. We weren’t even dating for most of that time, we were just good friends.”
It’s safe to say things are going well, as Sweet Nobody’s upcoming full-length release, We’re Trying Our Best, will be available September 17th via Daydream Records.
I caught up with Joy and Brian to find out more about the album, the band, and what inspires some of their “graveyard lyrics.”
Here are eight things you should know about Sweet Nobody.
Their sound is the result of disparate styles coming together
Joy and Brian come from totally different musical worlds, and that’s why Sweet Nobody has such a unique sound.
“I grew up playing classical music,” Joy explains, “he grew up playing in loud garage bands. He just kind of made all my songs louder and faster.”
She adds that the demoing process really helped them create the vibe they were looking for, saying, “We had this idea of what we wanted our finished product to sound like, and we wanted to have most of those ideas down before we went actually into the studio, so in the demoing process we got down as many ideas as we could and honed things that way, and that’s what developed our sound.”
They’ll have you dancing to the darkness
While Joy’s lyrics are, in her words, “a little bit more on the melancholy side of things,” she says the development of a faster pace for the music would turn out to be exactly what she was looking for. “We had a couple fast songs once the band was in place,” she remembers, “and I just really enjoyed playing them. It’s fun to play that way live. I just really like to see people dancing at shows, so I think that’s part of it. I didn’t stop writing about the kinds of things that I wrote about initially, I just wanted people to be able to dance at shows, and (for us) to have fun playing, even though we were writing some songs about things that aren’t necessarily the peppiest, or happiest things.”
Brian also enjoys the dichotomy, saying, “I’ve always kind of loved songs like that, that juxtapose kind of heavier, or kind of darker themes, with something really light, and very melodic. Like the Nick Lowe song ‘Marie Prevost,’ about the silent actress, which details how she died, but it’s just a really super catchy, almost like a Beach Boys kind of song about this really dark demise of this ‘20s movie star.”
Their album title is diner inspired
The title of their upcoming album, We’re Trying Our Best, stems from a t-shirt design their bassist, Adam Nolan, came up with.
Brian explains, “The concept for it was kinda like a t-shirt you would find at a diner, so the diner needed a slogan. So it’s kind of like – what would the slogan of the diner, and the band, be if we could sum it all up? That was it. We’re trying our best.”
Joy adds, “We had a group text going on, and we were all submitting our ideas for diner tag lines, and that was the one that made us laugh the most, I think just because there was an air of truth to it.”
They’ve held on to We’re Trying Our Best for over a year
The band completed We’re Trying Our Best before the pandemic, but had been holding on to it for a number of reasons. Joy explains the band’s decision to wait to release the album, saying, “The goal we’ve had with anything we make is that we want to release it better than the last thing that we made. We were hoping to find a label, and it just felt like a weird time. It felt like a weird time to be like, ‘Hey, we made this thing everybody!’ Everyone was struggling and having a really hard time.”
Brian seconds this, saying, “It didn’t seem to really be on track with the whole ‘let’s release this one better’ idea.”
On September 17th, We’re Trying Our Best will finally have its day in the sun.
Dealing with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome informs some of Joy’s lyrics
After years of struggling with chronic health problems, Joy was diagnosed with a rare connective tissue disorder named Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. The issue is a painful one, as Joy explains it “wreaks havoc in your body all kinds of different ways – dislocations, and digestive issues, and headaches, and everything, just a lot of crazy symptoms.”
Dealing with this intense medical issue is something that’s present in Joy’s songwriting, as she notes, “I have written more about chronic pain, and how it affects your relationships with people, and sort of the isolation of all of it, a lot in the past few years, and there’s a lot of songs about that on the new album, for sure.”
Joy is always watching
Even if you don’t see Joy, she might see you, and she enjoys being a fly on the wall during some of life’s stranger moments.
“I like just overhearing snippets of weird conversations,” she says, “I’m always getting ideas for songs, and things like that. There was one time we did a taping for an internet show, we were driving by this parking lot, and there was just a guy flying a kite in the middle of this parking lot, nowhere near any kind of place where you think someone would fly a kite, and then there was a lady sweeping the parking lot, and examining it really closely. I think I did write a song about that. It was just an odd picture.”
If you share a bill with them, make sure you know who’s in the band
Joy says that as a female frontperson, coming up in the indie scene has been an experience. “It’s been interesting,” she says, “I noticed especially when we first started playing shows, before people kinda knew who we were, we’d show up to a gig, and inevitably everybody else who was playing in the other bands, it was all guys, and they would introduce themselves to the guys in our band, and not talk to me at all. I was just like a girlfriend. Like oh, she’s a groupie, or whatever.”
Opting to play it cool, Joy would watch the introductions happen, and then hit the stage with the band. “I’m just gonna get up and play, and do the thing that I do,” she says, “they’ll figure it out.”
They want to meet your parents
The members of Sweet Nobody have found that when you have a name like Sweet Nobody it can generate some comforting words from one’s parents. According to Joy, “All of our moms, at one point or another, have been like, ‘You’re Sweet Somebody to me!’”
That kind of love is something everyone in Sweet Nobody enjoys, especially when they see the parents of other bands at shows.
“One of my favorite things when we play shows with other bands is picking their parents out of the crowd,” Joy says, “I really love that. When it’s a band you’ve known from the internet, and they seem so cool and untouchable, and then it’s like oh, their parents are here! I love that. It just humanizes people. Everybody wants somebody to be proud of them.”