Student band 11/11 channels passion for music through performing

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photo courtesy of Trey Trepani

At one of their first live gigs, 11/11 performs Time by Pink Floyd at Circa STL.

Janka Gerber, Staff Reporter

The pulse of the beat, the buzz of the crowd, the weight of an instrument beneath a hand, the blinding lights coating the stage with an otherworldly glow. The entire room feels alive as the band gets ready to play their set, a smaller venue is a more intimate space, as if the artists are having a conversation with their audience. 

This is the feeling that artists junior Trey Trapani and freshman Mark Schultheiss are chasing in their band 11/11. They are a student rock band of five people including students from the Parkway District. 

The name of the band came about because of Trapani’s friend.

“My friend Caroline, who’s currently at NYU, kept seeing the numbers 11:11, 1:11, or 11 all over the place. Apparently, it is a lucky number in numerology,” Trapani said.

They decided to use the sense of luck and incorporate it into their band. 

Schultheiss is a new addition to the band and has high ambitions for what music will mean for him in the future. 

“I would like to get my name out there, amass a following. I would like to make useful connections with people in the industry. I would like to consistently gig and make money, eventually, doing it. I would like to sell out a large venue one day,” Schultheiss said.

Schultheiss has been fascinated by music since he picked up a guitar when he was 9 years old, and he sees the band as a great opportunity to start a career in music. He is the bassist for the band and he loves the music that they play. 

“We write and play in a variety of rock genres, though there is a particular fondness for progressive rock, bands like (early) Genesis, Yes and Rush,” he said. 

The band members all met through a band in School of Rock.

Schultheiss said, “Years worth of inclination towards music has led to the desire for the establishment of a band.”

Along with a passion for music, working together is just as important for a band to have the stellar sound that audiences are looking for.

“Coordination with other band members is essential,” Schultheiss said, commenting on the most difficult yet crucial parts of playing in a group. 

Trapani has similar feelings about the importance of teamwork.

“I’d say that letting some stuff go instead of starting an argument about every detail has been a learning experience for me,” Trapani said.   

For Trapani, music has always held an influential role in his life. He can even remember the exact song that sold him on wanting to be a musician, despite already playing an instrument at the time. 

“The song that made me start taking music seriously is called The Return of the Giant Hogweed by Genesis. I remember watching a video of it when I was 10. It knocked me out. I had been playing bass guitar for about a year when this happened but that song sold me on the idea of music,” Trapani said. 

His favorite memory of being with the band was the second gig the band played together. He remembers the other band who played covering one of his favorite artists of all time, Kate Bush. When he went on stage with the band he remembered the rush of being on stage once again. 

“The best feeling is when you’re playing and you can hear everything come together. I get goosebumps sometimes,” he said. 

The members of 11/11 have grown close since the inception of the band. Trapani is very happy with Schultheiss’s addition to the band as well. 

“Even though he hasn’t played that much bass before he’s really jumped into the role like I suspected he might,” he said.

Trapani also loves the playful aspect that he has with the rest of the people in the band. 

“The drummer and I often get into theological debates to the bewilderment of the rest of the band,” Trapani said, recalling some of his favorite moments in rehearsals. 

Trapani will always hold his love for music close to his heart but is thinking of going on a different path when he goes to college next year. 

“I intend to study Political Science and Constitutional Democracy at Mizzou but I’m not ruling music out either. If I can make a career out of it I will,” he said.

11/11 will play their next gig on July 18 at Red Flag at 7:30 p.m. If tickets are bought through any of the band members they are $12 and they are hoping to see some familiar faces from the stage.