The first time I ever heard the Greeting Committee play on 96.5 The Buzz, I assumed they were some band, possibly from L.A., making their run at the big time. Imagine my surprise when I saw them live for the first time and realized, not only were they local, they weren’t even old enough to drink. It has been almost two years since The Greeting Committee got signed and released their hit single, “Hands Down” and while most would think they would have moved to a bigger, “better” city to grow their fan base, the band has remained rooted to their hometown.
Last week, The Greeting Committee released a new single, “Elise”. A song that captures what it’s like to love someone—really love someone—for a long time. Where some would say Addie, the lead singer, sounds sad, I would consider her delivery raw, soulful and honest; love can hurt, even when it feels good. Her sound perfectly captures the tightness we sometimes feel when we fall in love and “Elise” reminded me of what it was like to fall for my boyfriend, Brent: a man I have been with for almost 2 years now.
But, this isn’t the first time Addie and her lyrics have pulled on our heartstrings. Remember “I Don’t Mind,” a song Addie admits is about a relationship that went stale; she confesses she portrayed that relationship unfairly, “nobody was at fault, it just didn’t work.” There is a level of maturity that comes out of The Greeting Committee’s music and maybe that is a bit unexpected for those of us who remember feeling so immature at 18. But it’s more than Addie’s lyrics that portray an intense maturity; it’s her voice. When I close my eyes and really listen to her, I’m reminded of a young Haley Williams, paving her way to the top as the lead singer of Paramore. Addie’s voice may be a bit more melodic and softened, but the power is packed behind every wispy note, just like Haley. Also unexpected, Addie’s humility.
Addie is a larger than life personality on stage, she makes the effort to interact with her audience and influences them to feel what she’s feeling on stage—and she’s only about five feet tall. A powerful force and the face of the Greeting Committee, she can vouch for herself and the rest of the band that they are humbled by the support they have received from KC and other parts of the country. They had a dream and they went for it and it may not have happened if Addie hadn’t botched a solo set and realized she wanted other people to go on this journey with her. Unlike the movies, The Greeting Committee wasn’t a group of misfits that formed a band to gain recognition and stand up the bullies; they were friends who ran in different circles and came together for a common goal; make music and some damn good music did they make. “Sometimes [he] feels bad knowing all the success we have gained,” Addie says of her fellow bandmate Brandon, but he shouldn’t feel bad at all. The Greeting Committee worked hard, created a band that works well together and created powerful songs that have captured Kansas City’s heart.
“Elise” is a not-so-subtle reminder of what The Greeting Committee can do to our hearts and reminds us how much we love their music, their spirit and their energy. As they gear up to go on tour, fans are eager to hear new material that hits us with punch-you-in-the-gut honesty juxtaposed with that “indie music you can dance to” we went crazy for when we heard “Hands Down” for the first time. After hitting up Texas, The Greeting Committee will return to their roots, May 11 at the Record Bar.