When I was told that I could have the chance to interview the American rock band 'Deer Park Avenue', I was quite excited, since they are not only well-known in the United States for their music, but also for covering many of my favourite bands such as Nirvana and the Beatles.

Sarah and Stephanie Snyder are sisters who started out as journalists and now are musicians, music bloggers, and voting members of the Recording Academy (GRAMMYs).

Music and Rock' n' Roll

Annabel Kohlmeier: Hey girls! Good to see you. How did you start your music career?

Sarah: We started to play piano when we were around 5 years old.

A few years later we picked up guitar and drums and began playing in church, where our dad was pastor, and at talent shows, schools, and festivals.

Stephanie: Another big influence on our start in music is our background - we grew up in a multicultural family, with family and friends all over the world. Our mom grew up in New Delhi and her family moved to California, where she met our dad. They both lived in Europe before we were born and brought back all kinds of music with them to the States, so we had a variety of styles to listen to - Bollywood, Beach Boys, Italian pop, and loads more!

A.K: How did music change your life?

Stephanie: I think one of the biggest ways music has changed us is through the people we have met through making music.

Some of the nicest people you will ever meet are in music! Two people who have really influenced us in music are our cousins Gregg Bissonette and Matt Bissonette - Gregg tours with Ringo Starr and Matt with Elton John. They have been our music mentors. There are countless others we have had the chance to meet and spend time with who really inspire us in creating and connecting.

Sarah: I think that's what music comes down to for us - connection. We have lived and travelled all over the world, California, New York, Washington D.C., Switzerland, and now Munich. And we have found that you really need very little to feel at home. Home is people. Home is music. Home is love.

Musical influences

A.K.: Nirvana was one of your biggest influences?


Sarah: Nirvana influenced modern rock like no other. They were one of the bands that brought kids together and they still do. We listened to Nirvana with friends growing up, we'd learn the songs and work out the guitar parts. We built so many memories through music. Nirvana just did their thing, Kurt Cobain spoke his mind and expressed himself.

I feel like the best music comes from the worst experiences. Music helps you relate to people who have been in dark places. Not everybody can be a winner, but everybody is a loser at some point in their lives. People relate to vulnerability. Music creates compassion and hope to go through those dark places with friends, knowing that you're not the only person who has ever walked that road.

We write about breakups, loss, relationships, finding happiness, basically everything, and even the journey from a dark place back into light and hope, and then again back into darkness again. Life isn't any one thing, or any one way - it's all kinds of experiences that are all valuable, whether it's happiness and good times or a struggle that makes you stronger.

Stephanie: Nirvana is really honest music, raw rock 'n' roll. They didn't really have a formula or follow a certain pattern. They were authentic in expressing what they were really feeling - something we all need. We all have this need inside of us to communicate how we truly feel, beyond just the surface of things, and to be understood by people who can relate - to be more authentic in expressing ourselves instead of trying to pretend to be something we are not.

For me and Sarah, the truest version of ourselves is when we are making music. We are trying to be as open as possible and let people know who we really are.

A.K.: Thanks so much for the interview! See you on Friday at Lost Weekend at the Munich Sessions!