REM: The love-infused single that catapulted LVNA into the campus limelight

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"LVNA wasted no time immersing themselves in the local music scene, debuting at a newly opened concert venue. Despite initial jitters... LVNA's raw energy and onstage chemistry quickly endeared them to audiences." - Arts & Entertainment Editor / Al Harmon.

In the bustling realm of college life, where academic pursuits typically take center stage, a new and distinct melody is reverberating through the halls and dorms of Rowan, specifically Holly Pointe Commons. LVNA, a musical ensemble comprised of freshmen students—Maddie Reddy, Liz Rohr, Jeremy Vrablic, and Matt Veneziano—has emerged as a rising force with their unique sound and dynamic performances.

The origins of LVNA trace back to the senior year of Reddy and Rohr seniors in high school. The idea to form a band crystallized during Reddy’s senior solo, and as summer transitioned to fall, LVNA officially came into existence in October of their freshman year at Rowan. The band’s inception gathered momentum with the recruitment of Vrablic as the bassist during a casual meeting during class. 

“We were going around the circle and we saw Jeremy and we automatically just thought that he looked cool. We locked in,” said Reddy. “He said that he played bass and then we said, what do we say we’re gonna come we’ll circle back circle back we said we’ll circle back and we circled back and Jeremy was a member of LVNA that night.”

Veneziano, the drummer, was brought into the fold through a serendipitous connection during a class assignment. Veneziano was in Rohr’s class last semester for audio recording and they both were assigned a project assignment. Rohr volunteered to play guitar and Veneziano to play drums. Rohr never talked to him before but when they were playing it just felt like there was good chemistry. 

“So I was like, hey, we have a rehearsal right now. Do you like want to go? And he was like, Yeah,” said Rohr.

“I met Matt, at the beginning of the year at the gazebo on campus. He was playing with a different guitarist. And I remember speaking to him saying, Wow, you’re good at the drums,” said Vrablic. “I was like, hey, maybe one day we’ll play with each other and then we didn’t speak for like months after that. And then next thing you know, he was in my band and now we speak every day.”

Rohr and Reddy delved into the search for the ideal band name, a journey that saw them cycling through numerous options, all of which Reddy vehemently disliked. The turning point came during a summer brainstorming session when they set out to find the perfect moniker for their musical venture. Inspiration struck Rohr as she scrolled through her phone, immersed in the song  “Luna” by Smashing Pumpkins. Intriguingly, Luna was not only the title of the song but also the name of Reddy’s cat.

The genesis of the name “LVNA” occurred when Rohr proposed it to Reddy after the fortunate encounter with the song. Reddy’s immediate affection for the suggestion marked a pivotal moment in the band’s naming saga. Subsequently, the duo decided to tweak the written style, transitioning from the conventional “Luna” to the stylized and distinctive “LVNA,” encapsulating the essence of their musical identity.

LVNA wasted no time immersing themselves in the local music scene, debuting at a newly opened concert venue. Despite initial jitters and the absence of a permanent drummer in those early days, LVNA’s raw energy and onstage chemistry quickly endeared them to audiences. 

Reflecting on their journey, Reddy shared, “We’ve definitely come a long way, and our shows now are a million times better.”

When delving into LVNA’s musical influences, a diverse tapestry unfolds. Reddy draws inspiration from the dynamic presence and vocal prowess of Hayley Williams of Paramore. In contrast, Rohr finds creative stimulus in the multifaceted projects and songwriting skills of Pete Wentz from Fall Out Boy.

A recent milestone in LVNA’s journey is the release of their single “REM,” a love-infused composition penned by Rohr about Reddy. Rohr came up with the inspiration for the song way back before she and Reddy were in a relationship and Rohr had a crush on Reddy. Amid a chorus or choir class, an unforgettable moment unfolded when a group of theater and chorus kids, including Reddy, entered the room. 

Rohr found herself captivated by Reddy’s presence, especially as she rummaged through her oversized purse instead of carrying a conventional backpack. Reddy’s thoughtful gesture, spending a good ten minutes searching for something, left a lasting impression on Rohr. This particular incident served as the inspiration for a song, with lyrics alluding to dropping a jaw and searching in a purse. 

“That’s what that song is about. I think I wrote it up in my notes app inconspicuously when she wasn’t looking,” said Rohr. “REM stands for ‘rapid eye movement’ which is the sleep stage where you have most dreams.”

 Collaborating with producer Josh Greeno, LVNA transformed the song from a mere demo into a musical gem all in Greeno’s basement. “REM” exceeded expectations, amassing over 2,000 streams in just two days, and as of now sits at over 5,700 streams. The success of this single not only brought joy to the band but garnered attention from an unexpected fanbase.

The challenge of balancing the demands of college life with a genuine passion for music is a tightrope LVNA walks with grace. Vrablic, an electrical and computer engineering major, emphasizes the importance of making time for both pursuits. He credits the unwavering support of his father as a driving force in his journey to pursue his musical dreams alongside his academic endeavors.

The band practices in the small and tight dorm of Rohr’s in Holly Pointe Commons. She currently lives in the dorm by herself having no roommate this semester which makes the practice session just a little bit easier. 

“I had a contraption last night. It was like a sideways drum thrown with the kick pedal. A practice pad with a piece of paper on it. And then a symbol stain with high hats on it, but I needed to hollow out part of the plastic that goes on the symbol so I could fit them as high as it was,” said Veneziano.

As LVNA continues to ascend in the local music scene, its aspirations extend to iconic venues such as The Foundry in Philadelphia. Gratitude permeates their sentiments, directed at the supportive community within Glassboro. LVNA is eager to contribute to the vibrant musical landscape that defines its campus.

In a world where college students often grapple with a myriad of challenges, LVNA emerges as a beacon of inspiration. Their story showcases how passion and dedication can carve a unique path, seamlessly harmonizing academic pursuits with a fervent love for music.

The journey of LVNA is not merely a narrative of a rising college band; it is a testament to the spirit of youthful ambition and the pursuit of dreams. Through the highs and lows, LVNA’s trajectory serves as a living testament to the belief that, with dedication and a harmonious blend of diverse talents, one can create music that resonates not only in the campus dorms but also in the hearts of those who lend an ear.

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