Water The Band is a Winston-Salem based group of siblings who write and perform original music. Our songs, inspired by the wide-ranging artistic and cultural influences we grew up with, place emphasis on human experience and inner movement. Our debut album, "Everyone's Home," was written over the course of several summer and winter holidays when we siblings, scattered after our various educational pursuits, would all come home for break. We have had such wonderful help and support from many people throughout this journey, but to our parents in particular we'd like to say thank you. Matthew and Kailani Ward provided consistent good advice and steadfast encouragement throughout each stage of this project.
Please visit "Listen" at the top of the page to hear our music and support us. And please share!
M E E T T H E B A N D
When her first hit single “If Only I Had a Puppy” made its Ward family living room debut in 2007, life as an artist began for Bella. Although her parents were not moved to reward their daughter’s creativity with a puppy, this small failure did not hinder her self-expression. Bella’s early artistic experiences include singing show tunes in her mom’s musical theater classes, learning fiddle with her dad, and putting on solo act dance performances for the neighborhood via the front bay window.
Bella’s musical role models start with her violin teachers: Elise Winters, Beth Blackerby, Leah Peroutka, Richard Luby, and Kevin Lawrence with whom she currently studies at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts as a violin performance major. Her songwriting is influenced by musicians such as Joni Mitchell, Sarah Jarosz, Nickel Creek, and Regina Spektor. If Bella was stranded on a desert island and only had access to 5 pieces of art for the rest of her life she would choose: “Attaboy” from the Goat Rodeo Sessions, “Wild Geese” by Mary Oliver, the Barber Violin Concerto, Bach’s Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin, and a copy of Jane Austin’s Pride and Prejudice.
When Bella is not playing music she enjoys running, writing poetry, beekeeping, serving in student engagement roles, and being inspired by the incredible artists among her friends, within Winston-Salem, and in wider communities of creators.
Tired of missing out on family jam sessions, Alexis began taking classical guitar lessons at the age of twelve with Ellen Whitaker. Her discovery of the guitar and its superpowers was inspiring, and Alexis soon started writing songs. Having taken musical theater lessons as a child, Alexis loved singing. She was delighted to find an instrument that she could sing with!
Alexis was later accepted into the high school music program at The University of North Carolina School of the Arts for classical guitar, where she is currently studying with Joseph Pecoraro and Luke Payne. She loves music of many kinds and composes drawing from a musical reservoir of folk roots, jazz improvisation, musical theatre rhythms, and classical technique. She will graduate this May, and, after her wondrous musical experiences at school, aspires to attend music college and be an artist for life. It would be quite the life indeed.
Alexis also enjoys baking, biking, reading, and writing. She hopes you love the music!
Hadrian approaches music from the lens of community. Music is shared experiences. It is shared ideas. It explains inexplicable feelings. It helps us recognize the humanity in people who may seem vastly different to us on the surface. When writing music for Water the Band, Hadrian engages a creative back and forth with his bandmates, working the song until it speaks for all those involved. He hopes Water the Band can resonate with others the way his favorite music resonates with him.
Madelyn's favorite part of musicianhood is studio recording, as she thrives on high intensity and enjoys the relative subtleties of singing into a mic. A fan of the spontaneous, Madelyn's best work usually grows out of an initial improv which she fidgets with until complete. She manages the band, and, along with her siblings, sings and writes melodies, harmonies, and lyrics for Water The Band. Madelyn loves art and beauty in all of its forms. Her favorite artists include: Félix Vallotton, Edna St. Vincent Millay, E.E. Cummings, Joanna Newsom, Esperanza Spalding, Rogers and Hammerstein, The Danish String Quartet, and Donald O’Connor. She always loves watching golden age cinema and good ballet. Aside from music, Madelyn's hobbies include gardening, cooking, knitting, social dancing, and writing poetry. She is happiest deep in conversation with one person at a time.
Madelyn has a Bachelor of Music degree from The University of North Carolina School of the Arts where she studied classical voice with Marilyn Taylor.