(L to R) Alex Frankel, Peter Tchoukaleff, Sam Stephens, with guest guitarist Andrew Moses
ALTON - Three boys had two dreams growing up - one that would lead them down their own paths, and the other, a dream to aspire together.
Peter Tchoukaleff, 23, and Sam Stephens and Alex Frankel, 22, make up the new and upcoming band, Eliot & Eads Band.
Tchoukaleff said all three play all the instruments in their band. However, they have primary instruments, too. Tchoukaleff said he mainly plays guitar and piano, Frankel is the primary drummer, and Stephens is the primary bass guitarist.
Eliot & Eads Band can be classified as a mellow rock group.
Tchoukaleff, originally from Alton, and Stephens and Frankel, originally from St. Louis, have been talking about the idea of recording their own CD since they have known one another.
“I’ve known these guys since high school, maybe even before then,” Tchoukaleff said.
The three boys played throughout high school. After high school ended, they went their separate ways for college but remained friends. Although the three had different career paths, which led them to move to different states, they still had their dream together.
Stephens moved to New Orleans, where he attended Tulane University. He received his bachelor’s degree in disaster management, and is working toward a master’s degree.
Tchoukaleff moved to Washington, D.C., where he attended George Washington University and received his bachelor’s in geography. He now works for the federal government.
Frankel moved to Philadelphia, where he attended Drexel University. He received his bachelor’s in the business program, with a concentration in music.
Frankel’s college, Drexel University, is where the recording of their first album began.
“Alex had to do his thesis for his final. He said he could do anything he wanted as his final project. So, he called us up and said he wanted to record their first album as his thesis,” Tchoukaleff said. “I started writing the songs for the album, Sam drove up, we met and began recording.”
Frankel, Stephens and Tchoukaleff decided while they were home for the Fourth of July holiday, it would be a perfect time for them to get together and perform their first CD in their hometown.
Tchoukaleff said they will be playing their first CD straight through from front to back in his parents’ back yard, where the guests are welcome to bring their lawn chairs to sit.
“It’s sentimental here. We grew up playing here,” he said.
“It’s just real exciting. I never thought I would be doing this.”
Along with making their first CD, it was a challenge for the members of Eliot & Eads. Tchoukaleff said it was wonderful with the love, support and generosity from all of their family and friends to help with the funds to get their first CD to go viral.
Their CD, produced by Drexel University, is called “The Flyover States.”
Tchoukaleff said they still are finishing up last-minute touches to their album, but it was scheduled to be released by the end of July.
“The record for us, since we’re all from the Midwest, and we migrated to coastal states, it’s about what we’ve seen, places and cities we’ve seen,” he said. “It’s about celebrating parts of the country that are not really talked about.
“It’s still so surreal,” he said.