The college town of Champaign-Urbana brought together a diverse group of musicians under the compassionate leadership of frontwoman Emily Otnes: among them, marching / jazz band geek Joey Buttlar, U2 / Radiohead fanboy Colin Althaus, and soft-spoken rock purist Nicholas Soria.
Beginning as a backing band called The Weekdays (but quickly outgrowing their role), Tara Terra began to develop a sound that was remarkably true to the individual, yet cohesive as a whole. They released their first LP, Daughter, in 2014 and began to establish themselves as a permanent fixture in Champaign-Urbana’s scene.
Though each musician never loses focus of their frets, drum heads and pedalboards, their personalities shine together in live performance. Visible on Audiotree Live and a Daytrotter session that was premiered via Paste Magazine, it is clear that Tara Terra are at heart, a bunch of college friends who share the joy of making music together. Fueled by a collective creative fervor as much as a shared love of Chinese buffets and cheap rooms at the Red Roof Inn, the band holds firmly to the ethic “work hard, play hard.” And this work has paid off, having already sold out two headlining shows in Champaign-Urbana, played the Metro in Chicago, and successfully completed an East Coast tour on top of many local and regional dates.
But for Tara Terra, the best is always yet to come — their next step is recording a sophomore LP later this year. Heading into the studio with Rick Fritz (The Beach Boys, The Soil and the Sun), the band aims to showcase a more fully realized sound, inspired by their evolution as musicians, friends, and individuals.