Fields and Planes started playing together in 2012 when three students from Capital University in Columbus decided to get together and make some music.
With this timeline in mind, the band will be celebrating its seven-year anniversary in the spring, Fran Litterski, keyboardist and vocalist for the band, said.
The band consists of Litterski, Paul Valdiviez on guitar and vocals, Seth Daily on the drums, Jason Bash on the bass and Aaron Quinn on guitar as well. While the other four graduated from Capital, Bash is an alumnus of Ohio State.
Although both Daily and Valdiviez consider the band’s music as more of alternative and indie-pop, Litterski said that she often refers to the band’s music as “chamber-folk rock.”
Fields and Planes got its name from a song that they wrote called “Fields and Planes,” to which everyone contributed. Valdiviez said he did not want to fixate on a specific style and leave it open ended, to just see what happens.
“For me, it was all about opportunity and what is possible and leaving a wide-open field,” Valdiviez said.
The songwriting process for the band is very collaborative, where Litterski said that each member either brings a song to rehearsal or makes a demo and sends it out, and then the rest of the members write to it.
“It’s rare that we have one [song] that was strictly written by one person,” Litterski said.
Litterski also said that they find inspiration everywhere — sometimes from their own experiences and sometimes not.
Valdiviez said that sometimes they do write “fantasy” songs with “Let Me Go” being one such song. He describes fantasy as a song that isn’t necessarily autobiographical, but ultimately real-life experiences end up seeping into the songs as well.
The band draws a lot of inspiration for its style from female artists like Julia Michaels, Elle King, Sylvan Esso and Bird and the Bee, both Litterski and Valdiviez said.
When the band first started out, its music sounded much different than it does today, as Valdiviez said that he used to play a lot of classical acoustic guitar, but progressing with the times and with development in technology, he said that it changed to more “electronic pop-y stuff.”
“Our last two albums that we released last year are very different sounding than our first two albums,” Valdiviez said.
The band is very appreciative of the Columbus music scene, and Valdiviez said that it has a lot of great people and is bursting with energy.
Litterski added that the music scene offers opportunities to play with a lot of different bands, making the show more fun.
The last two albums, both of which were released in 2018, featured a lot of artists from around Columbus who pitched in with various instruments during recording sessions for different songs, Valdiviez said.
“I think Fields and Planes fits in the Columbus music scene because you could say nobody fits in the Columbus music scene,” Daily said.
The band takes advantage of the wide variety of genres that its music falls into and caters each set list according to the people they’re playing with or the kind of show it is.
“I think with our writing process and how we don’t really fit super well into a genre, we can almost mold our shows,” Litterski said. “So if we know we’re playing a show with like a funk-jazz group we can play songs more related to that and if we’re playing a pop show we can play our newer pop songs, so that also makes it fun.”
Litterski said that the band has enough material for a third EP, and Valdiviez said they’re hoping to release it as soon as possible, as they’re still “churning out” some ideas.
Their music is available on “all the digital streams you can swim in,” Valdiviez said.
The band also has a few gigs coming up with a show at Combustion Brewery on June 1, and Valdiviez and Litterski will be playing a stripped-down duo set on May 19 at Land-Grant Brewing Company.
Litterski wants the band to be remembered for putting on a “really fun show,” and besides their music, she also wants the band to be remembered for their presence on the stage during their shows.
“Smiles, outfits and moves,” Litterski said. “Not the music.”