Artist highlight: Juniper Park performs at CBU

Elijah Hickman | Banner

SoCal-based indie band Juniper Park performed for the first event of TWIRP week on Sept. 20, garnering new fans from the California Baptist University student body.

The five-member band consists of Nolan Seeger as lead vocalist, Rylan Scott on bass, Elijah John on guitar, Oscar Flynt on drums and Chandler James on rhythm. Although Seeger, Scott and John grew up together, the band was not born until after they graduated from high school a few years ago. The concept of Juniper Park began in a Starbucks after a Young the Giant concert. John joined approximately a year later, and the drummer position fluctuated for years before settling on the current drummer, Flynt. James came in after being snagged from another band to join Juniper Park. After this process of collecting members, the current band has only officially been together for about two years.

Despite their short time together, the band agreed that they have grown together musically and emotionally. Scott spoke about a specific moment when the band first wrote their song “Reno.” He said this was when the band found its special sound at his birthday party during the pandemic.

“Everyone was at my house hanging out for my birthday, and we decided to jam,” Scott said. “Eli started playing some chords, Oscar started playing a beat and we created a phone demo. He sent us a really terrible demo of it, but it just made sense. The actual song came out a year later.”

John echoed this point, agreeing that “Reno” seemed to flow together and connect the band.

“By far, at least in my opinion, it was the easiest song we ever wrote,” John said. “It just felt the most natural coming out.”

As for a career-high, the band unanimously agreed the tour that ended about a month ago was a peak. Tour venues ran from Utah to the Pacific Northwest area. It represented growth and change, as they performed at many of the show locations in the past.

“Last time, only 20-30 people showed up,” Scott said. “But it was sold-out venues this time, 400-500 cap for each. It was so fun.”

Seeger commented on how the show at CBU, as well as the crowd’s contagious energy, was an example of continued success for the band.

“I loved how interactive the crowd was,” Seeger said. “Going off of that other tour, certain cities were really interactive and other places were hard. But CBU was fantastic. Everyone was into it almost immediately.”

Camryn Alvarado, junior sociology major, attended the concert and said she had a great time. She shared her thoughts on the performance, along with how great it was to be able to attend a live music event after the pandemic.

“I thought the concert was great,” Alvarado said. “It was so fun to enjoy live music with people even if I had never heard the band before.”

As for future plans, Juniper Park is working on a five-song EP as well as a new single. The band is also planning to continue touring.

“Reno,” along with the rest of Juniper Park’s nine songs, is available on all streaming platforms.

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