It’s special when something new makes you feel a sudden sense of nostalgia. When something is composed to be instantly relatable. When you find yourself time traveling, just for a moment. Sister – the duo turned full band – does just that by creating melodic odes to the beauty of the human condition.
The original two members, Amanda Page and Haylee Ryan met in their teenage years and have been inseparable ever since. They’re currently roommates in Oak Cliff and have been for five years. “You may find us at home playing with our two Dalmatians, Sister and Sugar, while watching some TV or sitting around the fire pit in our backyard with friends. Or we may be having a drink in Oak Cliff at our local favorite spots, spending time with the people we care about.” By day, Amanda is a floral designer, and Haylee is a local artist and teacher.
The sisterly pair was already playing shows in DFW when they started exploring the idea of a full band. “We found our band members through a lot of great coincidences, mostly word of mouth, and through great friends in the local music scene.”
Bassist and vocalist Chadwick Murray, drummer and vocalist Aaron Stanfield, and guitarist Ian Ferguson round out the band. Murray was the first addition. “He asked us if we ever wanted to form a full band, if he could be our bass player. We started inviting him over for dinner and writing sessions about four years ago, and the rest is history.” Stanfield, a Fort Worth native, moved to Dallas to marry Art Conspiracy’s music coordinator, Rachel Behring, who later introduced him to the forming band. “He stuck like glue, and also co-produced this record with Chadwick.” Ferguson was there from the beginning… and then he wasn’t… and then he was. “Our incredibly talented electric guitarist, sat in with us on our first Sister show ever. We had another guitarist for a little while, but when we decided to record, Ian was the only one we wanted.”
Sister has a bluesy-rock sound with a silky, lyrical blend. “We love soulful melodies and harmonies, which can sometimes come across as a moving ballad or as an energetic rock song.” The band inspired by Fleetwood Mac, Joan Osborne, Alabama Shakes and Dawes transcends genres with a unique devotion to their own style.
And you may be wondering at this point, “What’s up with the name?” ‘Sister,’ seemed meant to be when Amanda and Haylee encountered the name separately.
“We still argue to this day about who thought of the name for our band, as we each think it was our idea. We love the name Sister, not just for the sound of the name itself, but because it stands for a strong female bond – like family, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be the sister you were born with. It’s feminine, but bold. Something to be taken seriously. Something you can be yourself around.”
Sister embodies the beauty of a tangible relationship in the form of melodies, lyrics and a live experience that’ll leave you feeling wistful and daydreaming of days gone by. Expect to see a lot more of Sister in DFW in the months to come. You can check out their debut album, Spiraling Minds on iTunes and Spotify now. And most importantly, don’t miss Sister at the Art Con 13 VIP Party on Thursday, November 9, at The Cedars Union.
Written by: Christin Taylor Workman