The last show Austin-based band Nooner performed on stage was two years ago. Even then, that reunion show included every official member on stage (three guitar players, etc). But for the original four members, guitarist Greg Massouh, bassist Tim Seymour, drummer Ben Mills and vocalist Chris Telles, their upcoming show on Jan. 21 at Stubb’s BBQ is their first reunion show with just the four of them in five years.
Nooner was a power-pop band in the early 2000s, enchanting music fans with their feel-good lyrics and party vibe. After Mills left Nooner for another project, the band performed their last show and went their separate ways. UWeekly sat down with Mills to discuss the reunion show and what it was like playing those tunes all over again.
So what brought the band together for this show? Why another reunion show?
Ben Mills: We were talking about bands that (Squint) had played with through the years to bring into the show, and Nooner came up. Well, I’ll ask. Maybe we’ll do a reunion show. So yeah, we decided to put something together. We did a lot of shows with them through the years.
One of the members doesn’t even live in Austin, correct?
BM: Yeah, Chris now lives in Dallas. He’s been up there for about two years working on TV and films.
What has everybody been up to since you last played? You mentioned you’re in a new band (Waiting for August) and Chris is in acting stuff. What about the other guys?
BM: Jim, the bassist, and I were together in She Craves for about two years. Then Jim left to start a band called Righteous Brisket with Aaron Seymour, who also used to be in Nooner back in the day, but they got together and put together a new project. Greg plays in a band with a friend of ours called Call Me Sensei. And Chris hasn’t really done much of anything in music, but he’s gotten involved more in film and television type stuff in the last five years.
Do you feel it’s pretty easy to pump out the tunes? Or are you relearning?
BM: It’s more of watching me play the songs. We’re like, oh yeah, that’s how that goes, and it came together pretty quick. But we’ve played those songs together for so long that they are kind of ingrained in the brain. You just gotta figure out how to remember those parts again.
How do you select the songs for the show? Do you have an ideal set list?
BM: Yeah, when we decided to get back together, there are certain songs that we always played at every show, no matter what. “Kids” is one, and “Richard Pryor” is another. We just decided to build around those and go, hey, we haven’t played together in a while and we don’t know if we’re gonna play together again, which ones do you want to play? Which ones do we like? And just put together a list through that.
And you said that you guys separated and are playing in different groups and doing different things. What is it like playing together again after so long?
BM: It’s great. It’s, like, once a little bit of the rust got knocked off, it’s like we never stopped playing. Everybody had a good time at the first rehearsal. Looking forward to the show. It should be a lot of fun.
What I like about your band is that it’s just a reminder that, oh, I just need to have fun at a show sometimes. I just need to be a fan again.
BM: Well when we put together the band, that was the idea. We just wanted it to be a fun time for everybody. We weren’t trying to overcompensate for things and make it too political or anything like that. It was supposed to be “here’s an escape for you to just come out and have a good time,” and all of our favorite bands, like Cheap Trick, that’s all they ever wanted to do. They just want to play good fun music that people had a good time to come listen to.
Do you think there will be any more reunions in the future?
BM: Nothing’s on the books, but never say never.