Austin Steele owes his neighbor. Before his pop band even had a name, Unwritten Law frontman Scott Russo would invite the 16-year-old singer/guitarist and his band over to record at his home studio.
“I knew his daughter Cailin through [Rancho Peñasquitos] high school. She brought him our CD. He became a mentor to us. He was our early producer.”
Russo helped the band craft six pop/acoustic tracks and invited the band, Super Groupie, to open for Unwritten Law.
“We got to play the House of Blues,” says Steele. “The Unwritten Law fan base is a lot different. It’s older and more punk. We didn’t care what people thought. We just played the best show we could and tried to make the most of it. Someone threw a sandwich at us onstage. Alex just picked it up and ate it backstage.”
Super Groupie has since made four music videos, local label Pacific Records just released their debut album Sky.Sand.Sol., and their song “Lightning” appeared on the soundtrack of MTV’s Washington Heights last year.
But Steele tells the Reader it’s just not that easy making it as a pop band in San Diego.
“There is no scene for our music at all. There is the punk/indie scene and the reggae scene, but that’s not us. That’s why we’re going to Nashville for a couple weeks. We’re just going to hang out and play and meet people. We heard it’s a great place for songs, not just country songs.”
Super Groupie is used to jump-starting their music career.
- Wednesday, October 8, 2014, 8 p.m.
9500 Gilman Drive,
“When we were in high school, we went to the beaches in Del Mar every day with our acoustic guitars and would go up to girls on towels. We’d sing our songs to them and hand out [CDs] and pump our next show.... We played the Typhoon Saloon [in P.B.] last week, and this girl came up to us and said she remembered us from that.”
Cailin Russo, who has moved to L.A., got a boost to her modeling career when she appeared in two Justin Bieber music videos. She also added vocals to Super Groupie’s “Say You Want Me,” a song that got 41,000 YouTube visits.
“We’re a band coming up,” says Steele. “We’ll take what we can get.”
Super Groupie appears October 8 at the Loft at UCSD and then on October 15 at the VIP lounge pre-party show for the Enrique Iglesias/Pitbull concert at the Valley View Casino Center/Sports Arena.