Article written by Kyla Wyllie
Photography by Annika Cimas
Sometimes to achieve a goal, you have to look at things in a “step-by-step” standpoint. It’s more about how you approach an issue or a dream rather than the thing itself, the journey can determine the endpoint. Two of the members of Paper Days, Niko Sitaras (lead vocals and guitarist) and Jordan Graham (drummer), gave us some insight into the journey that they took to get to the position they’ve found themselves in today, and how they plan to get to the next destination of the rest of their lives.
The band known as “Paper Days” started out like most, in their high school years. Each member was priorly committed in separate bands, but they started jamming together, and as one thing led to another, Paper Days was born. The band has since undergone some changes, with the addition of Niko’s brother Xander Sitaras on bass, and Nate Blake on guitar.
“Making music is really important, but Niko does a lot of networking, and I think that that has really helped us the most,” Jordan tells us, Niko jumps in and adds, “emailing, a lot of phone calls, social media also.” Both musicians agree that networking is extremely important if you wish to make it as a successful musician, or in any career choice for that matter. However, not many people realize how important and necessary it is, or even know what networking is/does. When one “networks,” it means to simply make connections. Surround yourself with people who aspire to grow the same dreams as you, or have already achieved what you are perusing. It is important to develop contacts to aid in furthering your career, because, with networking comes opportunities.
“After our first practice,” both add that practice is the most crucial key of progressing musically, “we were like, ‘ok we need to get a show.’ After that night, I (Niko) went to see Inspired And The Sleep,” who I might add were also playing the show we interviewed Paper Days at. “I hadn’t really been to that many local shows, but I talked to them afterwards and we ended up getting booked, like the next month.” Jordan laughs and is quick to add, “we didn’t have a set ready, we just told them we could play.” Moral of the story, “you have to just go to shows to get your music out there,” says Sitaras, “go to shows!”
However, going to shows vs. playing shows are two completely different sides of the same world. “Shows creat nervous anxiety,” Niko and Jordan both agree, “it’s like this before every one, you get pent up and then you can breathe again, pent up and then you can breathe again.” There’s no way around that sweaty palm feeling, everyone gets stage-fright to some degree (even The Frights). Nonetheless, there are things that you can do to prepare, Jordan advises “a good meal before playing,” Niko adds to that, “Captain Crunch everyday! But in all seriousness, being sober on stage is important I think, to play your best.”
Like most great musicians, the members of Paper Days aren’t done growing, and furthering their dreams into reality. They hope to release their debut album with the backing of a record label, to expand it to new audiences.
Future Paper Days shows will be updated on the site, and one of our members, Autumn McDonald, would like to thank Niko Sitaras for sharing his water with her during their set and “saving her from dehydration.” From everyone here at Pure Nowhere Magazine, thank you for being such kind and amazing people, best wishes for the future.