Plucked from the Internet
One minute you're in a garage in Whittier recording songs you barely know. Next thing you know, you're watching a major motion picture, "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," and Kirsten Dunst is dancing in her underwear to your song. Are you dreaming? Not if you're 19-year-old Richie Eaton, who with Jessica Reynoza, 19, and Alex Willow, 17, comprise the Anaheim punk band the Willowz.
"It's been pretty crazy," Eaton says. "These were the first songs I'd ever written, so it's amazing anybody liked 'em." It wasn't just anybody, though, it was "Eternal Sunshine" director Michel Gondry, who made his filmmaking mark by doing groundbreaking music videos for the likes of Bjork and the White Stripes. Gondry wanted a couple of raw-sounding tracks, but his first choice, the White Stripes, doesn't license songs for movies. So Gondry's assistant started trolling the Internet for sound-alikes. Bingo. "Something" and "Keep On Looking" are in the movie. Gondry even ended up directing the video for the Willowz song "I Wonder."
"We recorded the album in a couple days in a wet, freezing-cold garage," says Eaton, whose band (which opens for the Fall on May 14 at the Echo) plans to tour this summer before recording another album in the autumn. "Those songs are like our demos -- we were kind of making some of them up while we were recording.... So I honestly don't quite know what to make of it. I mean, it's hard to think about something you really didn't have any intentions for."