Hope Vista, Rowan alumni, has embarked on a successful musical career post-graduation. As lead vocalist of the anthem rock band VISTA, she’s found herself writing new singles, performing at different venues and even opening for well known pop band Against The Current.
I got to speak with Hope via an email interview, covering topics from her personal life to the band. Check out her responses!
Q: Have you always wanted to be a singer?
A: Oh yeah, I’ve been singing since I was two or three. I’d just run around the house singing, my grandparents would film me on a video camera giving ‘concerts.’ I honestly can’t think of anything else I’ve ever wanted to do.
Q: Do you also write lyrics or play instruments?
A: I write most of VISTA’s lyrics, and I play guitar too! I used to be pretty solid at they keys but I’ve lost touch over the past few years because I haven’t played. I play guitar pretty much every day, I think I got my first one when I was seven or eight.
Q: What genre of music influences you most?
A: Mine are all super opposite of each other. I’ve always been really inspired by 90’s pop because that’s the generation I grew up in. That music is obviously very different than ours, but I was always really invested in the performance quality of that era instead. 70’s classic rock and the modern Warped scene are two of mine as well, I try to find inspiration in many areas instead of staying within one niche and getting stuck.
Q: Are there any particular adversities that you’ve experienced along your journey as a musician, either personal or professional?
A: Oh yeah. Losing my dad was the worst, that was hands down the most difficult adversity to push through. Losing band mates is always hard, losing anything in general is hard. But things don’t go as planned in this industry. I think you kind of always have to prepare for disaster or for something just to not go as you planned it. Backup plans and being able to think on your toes is how you overcome any hardship in the music industry.
Q: How do you think your experience at Rowan helped you get this far in your music career?
A: I graduated in 2015, so I’ve been out for a while. Being at Rowan for all four years straight taught me a lot about the quality of work and patience. I was a Writing Arts major, so I was consistently writing papers, I was always working on multiple papers at a time, so my work always had to be correct. It had to be correct grammatically, I had deadlines. But more importantly I had to make sure I was getting my thoughts out effectively, and that crosses over directly into music, writing lyrics, being a publicist, and also just communicating properly with industry professionals. If I didn’t know how to talk to people, I wouldn’t be in a band at all, I’d be curled up in a bed somewhere. And I can definitely credit a lot of those communication skills to my education at Rowan. Granted I skipped class a ton because I wanted to write music in my apartment, but I still learned a lot.
Q: When and how did the band get together?
A: This isn’t the original lineup of VISTA, the first one was put together about a year and a half ago. I knew our current guitarist Greg through other people, we have many mutual friends. I was looking for a new guitarist last summer, and he just messaged me out of the blue asking me about what I was looking for, we noticed we had the same goals in mind and a similar work ethic, and it just fit from that point on!
Q: What exactly is anthem rock, and what made you choose this genre? (It’s definitely one that interested in listening to!)
A: We originally wanted to build a sub genre from the ground up instead of sticking ourselves in one tight bubble. So we’re just basically exploring what the word ‘anthem’ means. What elements does that include? What type of guitar tones? We have heavy use of the bass drum, thick bass lines, pulsing guitar strumming patterns. It’s really just a combination of what we feel resonates with the word ‘anthem.’
Q: What are your goals as VISTA?
A: Greg and I both have the same goals, which is great because that means we’re both consistently on the same page. Warped Tour, break into the European/Asian touring markets, record deal, Billboard charting album. Those are the main ones right now, long way to go, but I like to see consistent momentum. It keeps me alive.
(Photo credit for both images: Holly Turner)