Brite Winter Festival is an annual outdoor 1-day festival held in Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood. Brite Winter 2015 will be held on February 21, 2015 and boasts over 60 musicians and bands from around Cleveland and other regions who will be playing on nine stages throughout Ohio City and the W. 25th Street area. Over the next five days, Midwest Action will be presenting an artist/band a day who we think you should definitely check out, should you want to brave the elements and rock out to this truly unique music festival.

What once started as a one-woman music project in 2010, has now turned into a full 4-piece band headed up by lead singer and founder Stephanie Trivison. With the release of their first LP The Young and the Bright in 2013, These Knees plays powerful pop melodies paired up with soul-searching lyrics – a perfect fit to warm up the Brite Winter crowd on a cold winter’s night in Cleveland, Ohio. Midwest Action sat down with Stephanie to talk about These Knees and where they’re going in 2015.

You can catch These Knees live on February 21, 2015 on the Ice Stage at the Festival Village from 6:00 p.m. – 6:45 p.m.

1. Describe your music in 5 words.

Warm, Melodious, Driving, Positive, Diverse

2. You’ve come a long way since you were a solo project performing with pre-recorded music you played yourself. What is it like now to have a full band as opposed to being on your own, and how do you approach your songwriting now?

I always knew that at some point the energy of a full band would grab my attention, which is what led to giving the project a moniker instead of just using my name. I think there is so much value in performing solo. It forces you to really look at your ability to keep a crowd engaged. Having a full band is not necessarily easier (scheduling 4 people can be messy, y’all), but it definitely feels better. It’s more comfortable and natural. The songwriting process has stayed mostly the same, except now there are three more minds to bounce ideas off of. Typically, I’ll write a song, demo all the parts, and share with the guys to learn. I’m least well-versed in drums, so Rob does the most post-demo finessing. Without the demos, I have a hard time conveying the vibe of the song, so it’s a great starting block for everyone. We’ll make structural changes and adjustments to individual parts in rehearsals if something isn’t sitting right. Rob is a music teacher by day, so he has a great ear for the levels and tone adjustments we need to make.

3. Twenty years from now, when people looking back at These Knees, how do you want to be remembered? What core messages do you hope stay with people?

Such a heavy question! I think the biggest compliment anyone could give me personally, is that I wrote good songs. For These Knees, I would want to be remembered as a band that made you feel good or left you with a good memory of a specific time in your life. Many of our songs focus on finding the brighter side, the silver lining, while looking at internal struggles or growth. In twenty years, I hope people could point to our songs as something that helped them find their own silver linings.

4. These Knees recently released a new single “Alive”… is this hinting at a new album? What’s in the works for 2015?

New music, new cities, new opportunities! We’re working through the songs right now, but there will most definitely be new music this year and it is a bit of a departure from what we’ve done so far.

5. What can Cleveland expect and look forward to from you at Brite Winter? (New songs, old songs, etc.)

We are so excited to be a part of Brite Winter this year! The last time we played, it was as an acoustic duet on a smaller stage, and this year we’re a full band on the Ice Stage! We’re playing our new song “Alive,” plus some songs from our album “The Young and the Bright.” We will do our damnedest to warm things up!

If you liked what you’ve read, you can check out more on their Bandcamp, Facebook, Spotify, and website. Also don’t forget to check out These Knees on Saturday, February 21 starting at 6:00 p.m.  on the Ice Stage at the Festival Village.

These Knees Official | Facebook | Bandcamp | Spotify