Pin It

Pravada's Past, Present & Future 

For Jesse Lee, Casey Tennis and Hubert Glover, Pravada is much more than a rock 'n' roll band. Instead, the trio of exceptionally experienced musicians sees their collective music efforts as a breeding ground for creative exploration and growth.

Lee (vocals, cello, guitars) and Tennis' (drums, keyboards, percussion, guitar) artistic bond began more than a decade ago, stemming back much further than the first ever Pravada recordings. Lee recalls, "We had known each other a long time, and there was a small catalogue of songs we'd been working on. We got a band together, and we tried to work on those after I relocated to Indianapolis, after living around a few other places."

Pravada members Hubert Glover, Jesse Lee and Casey Tennis will play WARMfest's River Stage this Sunday. - BRYAN MOORE
  • Bryan Moore
  • Pravada members Hubert Glover, Jesse Lee and Casey Tennis will play WARMfest's River Stage this Sunday.

Upon receiving second place at a 2004 Battle of the Bands at The Vogue, Pravada ventured down to Bloomington's Echo Park Studios, finalizing work on their debut full-length (Manus Plere) with their runner-up winnings. The album would eventually receive an official release from an impressed Jeb Banner in July of 2005 via MFT Records; however, several years passed before fans heard much more from the group, with other pursuits (including work with Margot & the Nuclear So and So's) putting Pravada endeavors on hold.

But during this time, Lee remained diligent, eventually returning to Pravada with several formidable song ideas that he'd developed over the years. These tunes would later surface on the band's two most recent releases: 2012's NO! EP and 2013's Dirty Looks full-length. It was with the first of these that Lee and company decided to create a series of five music videos, presenting each one of the EP's tracks through a compelling visual lens.

"Videos are the art form of today and will continue to be," Lee reflects. "When we watched musical performances we would be impressed or inspired, but honestly, we wanted to see a production, a mood, a mini film; they [music videos] do more than sell a song, that's besides the point. They create a memory."

Since making that decision, Pravada has teamed with several creative Indianapolis friends, orchestrating videos for "Molly," "Someone Else" and, most recently, "Flatbush." Collaborators have included Consequence Pictures, Justin and Dustin Lane, Matt Mays, Savannah Norris, Joel Umbaugh and many other Indianapolis-based talents. On these partnerships, Lee says, "We know so many talented videographers and art directors -- artists of their medium. I'd like to work with everyone I know and showcase their amazing styles." The trio will continue on that path when it begins work on its first animated production of the five-part series at the end of this summer.

Nevertheless, this juncture in the band's lifespan marks just one more stage in the founding duo's creative inquiries, according to Tennis. He explains, "Jesse and I have a very long-term goal about everything we want to do in music. We want to do a jazz record. We want to do a country record. We want to do all these thematic records because we want to challenge ourselves as musicians ... We have a lot of musical identities we want to exploit and learn from."

click to enlarge Jesse Lee plays guitar and cello with Pravada, as well as serving as the group's primary singer.  - KRISTEN PUGH
  • Kristen Pugh
  • Jesse Lee plays guitar and cello with Pravada, as well as serving as the group's primary singer.

These analyses are made possible, in part, by the educated backgrounds of the trio. Hubert (bass) points out, "You're not going to find a lot of bands where everybody has gone to school and studied how to play live music. We've all done that." Continuing down this probing path, the next of Pravada's explorative endeavors will be a release to be titled Pravada Family Sings, which will feature "a collection of singles with guest singers and instrumentalists recorded at varying houses, studios, attics and bathrooms," according to Lee.

At the end of the day, the Pravada frontman certainly feels a rousing satisfaction about his group's recent undertakings, thanks in large part to his pair of adept companions.

"The diversity of influences and skill levels of Casey and Hubert change what would be only an enjoyable, pretty song into an actual piece," he says. "Every time we play I'm again wowed by them."

This Sunday, the tightknit three-piece will perform on the River Stage at the second annual White River Arts, Recreation & Music Festival (WARMfest), alongside several other local and touring acts. For more information on the weekend-long event, visit the WARMfest website.

  • Pin It

Speaking of...

  • Home Grown

    Ben kicks off Indiana’s Bicentennial year talking to local musicians about their favorite Hoosier heroes.
    • Jan 13, 2016
  • Let It Be

    Ben responds to a recent piece on millennials' musical tastes, and makes a plea to be curious, not judgmental.
    • Jan 11, 2016
  • Artfelt Gifts

    Instead of buying more “stuff” for others, Ben shares the best places in Indy for thoughtful presents that make meaningful connections.
    • Jan 9, 2016
  • More »


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

About The Author

Seth Johnson

Seth Johnson

Since high school, Seth Johnson has been drawn to telling compelling stories through the lens of journalism. A 2013 graduate from Ball State University’s News program, he has especially discovered a love for music journalism, particularly connecting to local music stories in an effort to enlighten others on Indianapolis’... more

More by Seth Johnson

  • Humorous Homecoming

    Saturday Night Live cast member Sasheer Zamata returns home to Indy for a stand-up comedy performance Sunday at the White Rabbit Cabaret.
    • Sep 3, 2015
  • Chreece: A Rapper's Delight

    Indianapolis rapper Oreo Jones needs to catch his breath, but he's too adrenaline-charged and anxious at the moment organizing Saturday's huge hip-hop fest, Chreece.
    • Aug 25, 2015
  • I Get Around

    Scott Wilson tours the country talking about his book Son of a Beach Boy. Catch him Wednesday at the River Crossing Boulevard Barnes & Noble.
    • Jul 28, 2015
  • More »

Latest in Rock

  • Big Entertainment, Small Studio Sessions

    Our friends at WFYI share their new online feature that showcases indie musicians playing stripped-down acoustic sets at the station.
    • May 1, 2015
  • The Path of Righteous Music

    Faithful fans of The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band can congregate this Saturday, when the country blues trio performs as part of Butler ArtsFest 2015.
    • Apr 16, 2015
  • Plenty of Cash For Everyone

    The Cash Bash returns to Radio Radio this Friday evening to celebrate the life and music of The Man in Black.
    • Mar 4, 2015
  • More »
© 2017 CICF
Privacy Policy
Contact Us:
P: 317.634.2423   F: 317.684.0943
Central Indiana Community Foundation
615 N. Alabama St. #119
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204-1431
Sky Blue Window is presented by:

Website powered by Foundation