Firsts: Parrot Dream

Firsts: Parrot Dream

From Santiago, Chile, to Brooklyn, New York, indie rock group Parrot Dream has come a long way in more ways than one. Original members Gonzalo Guerrero (guitarist) and Christina Appel (lead vocalist) took their band dreams from Chile to the Big Apple, where the latter is from, in 2013, and has since grown into a five-piece collective.

At this year’s Northside Music Festival, Appel, Guerrero and the band’s bass player Matthew Skylar sat down with TIDAL to talk about their firsts — the first project they were a part of, the first show they ever played together and the first album that made a serious impact. Get to know the band and where the Parrot Dream all began.


On the first project they were ever a part of… Well, I don’t have much to say about this, ’cause actually this is my first musical project, which is, I think, kind of unusual. I think most people have bands when they’re teenagers and whatnot, but this is my first group project. I studied piano, and I did perform and do recitals, but solo. - Appel

I started to play drums between twelve and fourteen. I started to play covers, like Little Baron and Sonic Youth, with friends. Then I started to play more guitar. Before [Parrot Dream], I had three other projects, but they were more grunge. One was in senior year, then when I was in school, in college. - Guerrero

I was always playing but I didn’t really start joining bands until after college. I’ve mostly just been playing in bands around Brooklyn, friends’ bands and stuff, for the last few years. Then I started playing in Parrot Dream almost a year ago. - Sklar

On the first show they ever played together… The first show we played together was at the Silent Barn on August third. I remember it pretty well because it was my first show with them, last summer, and it was my birthday the next day. - Skylar

We have many first times. We have our first time in Chile, where we started the band, and then first in New York. That was interesting. - Guerrero

We moved to New York from Chile, maybe three years ago? And after a couple of months, we still hadn’t found new members because our drummer and bass player were still in Chile. We did a lot of acoustic sets, so just Gonzalo and me and my sister who sings, at Alphabet Lounge. And it was just the bartender and two of our friends. I don’t know who would’ve been there. We didn’t know other bands that could’ve billed together or anything like that. - Appel

On the first album that made a serious impact… For me I think it was Nirvana, Nevermind, when I was tiny. Yeah, that blew my mind. It was late ’90s, so I was like, twelve. Like the same age I started to play. With that I started to discover all the other stuff. Like Pixies and Sonic Youth. Around the same time I was listening a lot of melodic hardcore like NOFX and Pennywise. - Guerrero

I think the earliest albums that I was really into were actually [by] the Beatles, which is a pretty generic answer. But I was such a fan when I was around twelve that I made my mom drive me to a Beatles conference in, like, a convention center; they had Beatles cover bands. So yeah, that was kind of my first love, really. I really dissected every song from all of the albums. - Appel

I was in the third grade and my parents had a pretty sweet record collection, so I was into all of the stuff they were into growing up. I would just go through their albums, like Simon and Garfunkel. But definitely the Beatles as far as the album. It is a cliché to say, but I would probably say Sgt. Pepper’s. I remember taking my parents’ album, opening up the gate-fold and looking at pictures of [the Beatles] and their mustaches. And then you listen to the music and it is pretty transformative. But then when I started buying stuff on my own it was the ’80s; it was like Michael Jackson’s Bad on cassette, that kind of thing. - Skylar

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