You might remember singer Kira Leyden and guitarist Jeff Andrea as half of the popular Akron band Jaded Era. Last year, the pair traded Ohio for Los Angeles and formed a new band, the Strange Familiar, with Akron native and bassist Frank Freeman.
The group’s full-length debut, This Is Gravity, is an impressive 12-song collection that seems made for mainstream radio. Because the Strange Familiar isn’t signed to a major label, you probably won’t hear it there anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean the band hasn’t found a way to infiltrate your living room.
The group’s first single, “Courage Is ...,” was featured on both the popular ABC Family series The Secret Life of the American Teenager and NBC’s The Biggest Loser.
“A couple months after we moved out here, somebody found our music online. ... Within the next few months, it was on TV,” Leyden recalls. “We were not prepared for the massive response from people. Before we knew it, it was charting on iTunes.”
The band’s songs “Secret Life (You and Me)” and “I Just Want to Love You” — both featured on This Is Gravity — have also been used by the ABC Family show. Now that the Strange Familiar is building buzz, Leyden says the group is focusing on its live show, including a Nov. 27 performance at the Tangier in Akron.
“It’s going to be a different vibe,” Leyden says. “It’ll be a good time to come back. It’s around Thanksgiving, and everybody will be home. It’ll be a big party.”