Arts & Culture Family Featured Music & Events Fara Illich March 12, 2015

The excitement of touring the country in a rock band, the allure of being on the road — that life certainly offers its fair share of novelty and romanticism.
But the three-year-old folk pop band the Senators also enjoy just playing for their Downtown Phoenix base too.
Part of a cohort of 42 local acts featured at Viva PHX Saturday, March 14, they also headline the Local Stage two weeks later at McDowell Mountain Music Festival (MMMF).
According to Jesse Teer, lead singer and guitarist for the Senators, right now they’re focused on being the best local band they can be – and the best humanitarians too.
For their new single “Hummingbird,” slated for release Friday, March 27 (opening night of MMMF), the band pledged to donate 50 percent of the proceeds to Valley of the Sun United Way.
“When we have a platform like this, it’s just imperative to give back and be part of a broader thing,” Teer said.
They hope to raise awareness and a little money to help end childhood hunger, with the possibility of a benefit show and volunteer day of service in the near future.
“Partnering with the community has been a part of what our music has been about since the beginning,” said Jason Yee, drummer for the Senators. “When we were first forming and trying to figure out ‘what’s the purpose of our band?’ — it’s about community and connecting with other people.”

By plugging into Arizona festivals, events and venues, they can keep their footprint a little closer to home, according to Teer, connecting with fans in a more meaningful way.
“These are problems that are right around us that we can help out (with), and be a part of this community and get plugged into,” he said.
Band members Joseph Bitz, Bryan James, Teer and Yee aim to use the publicity surrounding their new album, titled “Battle Hymns,” to inspire others to get involved in their communities and become passionate about something close to home.
Watch the Senators live at Viva PHX Saturday, March 14 at 9 p.m. playing at Last Exit Live along with Treasurefruit, Wild Earth, Banana Gun, Michael Rault and Sara Robinson. Or catch them again at MMMF Friday, March 27 at 9 p.m.
*Top photo courtesy of the Senators.