From strip pole to second album

Amanda Hines

Stiletto: ‘We’ve kind of got a no-rules clause’

Local band Stiletto began with five guys standing in a dilapidated strip club, peeling posters of strippers off walls and untangling an endless amount of chords. The incentive? A venue (formerly The Orange Street in Akron) to showcase the band’s new tunes and maybe enough money to buy a pizza.

Almost three years later, the members of Stiletto have moved away from the strip club and are ready to release their second album in June. Comprised of vocalist and bassist Mike DeCarlo, drummer Ryan Chiera, guitarist Allen Gilleland, guitarist Kyle Shaver and vocalist Chad Tisch, Stiletto is nearing the end of its recording session for the second album, so shows have been sparse.

“(This) actually ends up being kind of nice because then people don’t get sick of you,” Tisch said, “It’s really easy to get people to come out to shows when you don’t play for a month or two.”

Senior marketing major Brett Thorson has known the band for years and said while he understands the cutback in shows, he does miss the band’s live music.

“Even if I hadn’t seen those guys play in 10 years, if I heard they had a show, I’d be the first in line for tickets,” Thorson said. “The energy they bring to the stage is incredible, and every second is absolute fun.”

Not wanting to subscribe to any specific label, the members of Stiletto describes their music rock/indie/neo-soul. With quirky song titles such as “Ready, Set, Spaghetti” and inspirations from the “Back to the Future” trilogy for their new album, Stiletto seems unafraid to try something new.

“We’ve kind of got a no-rules clause,” Tisch said. “Whatever you feel like doing, go for it.”

Whether playing in a basement, a strip club or a venue, the members of Stiletto seem happy where they are.

“We just want to make songs and have fun, and that’s it,” DeCarlo said. “We can’t lose anything from this, really.”

Thoughts of touring and record deals crossed their mind, but they still see themselves playing at Musica in five years.

“I don’t want to get screwed over with a contract. I’ve watched too many bands fall apart.” DeCarlo said. “I don’t want to hate my friends because of some business deal.”

So, for now, the members of Stiletto will consume their time with classes, jobs and working on their new album.

Contact all correspondent Amanda Hines at [email protected].