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Take a second look at Second Lovers

Local band Second Lovers plays live at Fitzgerald's in Houston.
Local band Second Lovers plays live at Fitzgerald's in Houston.
Bob Langham

It feels good to see hard work pay off, even when it's not your own.

All aboard

In the world of independent music, this payoff is a rarity. You hold your breath when it looks like it’s beginning to take shape for the bands you love and hope that speeding train of mounting public and critical recognition and praise isn't a mirage, dangling just out of reach like a Hitchcockian MacGuffin - a false promise, an intangible reward that in the end isn't there for the artists or the fans.

Local Americana, rock band Second Lovers currently seems to be on board this fast-moving train as it zips through Houston and other Texas cities (Austin, Dallas, and Bryan) and possibly locales beyond, one high-energy gig at a time and picking up new converts along the way.

If you've been a long-time fan of Second Lovers, you know they've suffered some setbacks over the last few years.

Working on the railroad

Several personnel changes have delayed the recording of new music and the release of a new album. However, the dedicated members of the band have been working hard to remain true to their music and their fans as they've navigated the metaphorical blood on the tracks, even when the band lineup was minimal and unsure.

During this time of uncertainty for the band and its core fans, it wasn't unusual to see the heart of the band, Nicolas Morales and Thomas Truver playing around town as the public face of Second Lovers. They kept their unique blend of music and their distinctive voice alive while never losing sight of what it’s all about - making music that matters to them and to their fans. Despite the challenges faced by Second Lovers in the past, they continued to work diligently on their music and remained on the radar of the local music scene with the release of their most recent EP “New Mexico” and by performing regularly at venues around town. This strong work ethic and devotion to their craft has allowed the band to stay connected with the music and their fans. In addition to believing in their own music, Second Lovers have been the guiding force in supporting and promoting other local music artists through The Caroline Sessions - a free monthly concert series, organized by Second Lovers and featuring local musicians, with all proceeds from the event going to support a different local charity each month.

All of this hard work and dedication to the music is paying off.

Runaway train

Second Lovers have recently returned to a full band lineup (Nicolas Morales - vocals and guitar, Chelsea Renee - vocals, Josh Hammond - drums, Sean Spiller - bass, Thomas Truver - guitar, John "Butch Rambo" Maxwell - banjo, mandolin, and percussion) and a full charge. This renewed energy has propelled the band through a steady stream of live performances in the last few months at some of Houston’s most prominent venues and events - The House of Blues, St. Arnold’s Brewery, Avant Garden, the Houston Grand Prix, Minute Maid Park, The Caroline Sessions, Fitzgerald’s, and the Buffalo Bayou Brewing Company. Click here to see a video of Second Lovers performing “New Mexico” at the House of Blues.

With the added incentives of being nominated by the Houston Press Music Awards for Best Folk/Americana Act for 2014, and their new, soon to be released album “New American” on the horizon, Second Lovers are picking up speed and preparing to bust through that fabled mirage ahead. They're headed toward the real reward beyond it now. Hold your breath. This is only a formality though. If history is any indication, they’ll fuel the fire for this speeding train with their music, their unwavering dedication to the music and their fans, and the high level of energy they derive from both. The train will keep chugging along and Second Lovers will reach that destination just fine.

Second Lovers will be stepping out from their usual behind the scenes role to perform a free show this Sunday, July 27 at The Caroline Sessions 5.5. Second Lovers will also be performing at the Third Annual IND3X Fest in Dallas, September 26-28.

If you want to climb aboard the Second Lovers' train, visit their Facebook page. You can also keep up with Second Lovers on Instagram and Twitter.

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