Waxwing (band)

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Left to Right: Rocky Votolato, Andrew Hartley, Cody Votolato, Rudy Gajadhar
Background information
OriginSeattle, Washington, United States
GenresEmo, indie rock
Years active1996–2005
LabelsHenry's Finest
Second Nature
Associated actsRocky Votolato
The Blood Brothers
Gatsbys American Dream
Jaguar Love
Head Wound City
Bugs in Amber
Lying on Loot
WebsiteArchived Site
Past membersRocky Votolato
Rudy Gajadhar
Andrew Hartley
Cody Votolato

Waxwing was an indie rock band from Seattle, Washington.


The band was formed in 1996 after the dissolution of Lying on Loot, of which Rocky Votolato (vocals/guitar) and Rudy Gajadhar (drums) were members. The two began playing music with bassist Andrew Hartley and later recruited Rocky's younger brother Cody as a second guitarist.

The band released a self-titled 7" single for Henry's Finest Recordings before signing with Second Nature Recordings. The band released their debut full-length, For Madmen Only, in 1999 and released a follow-up in 2000, titled One for the Ride. In this time, the band's profile in the Seattle music scene had grown substantially. Rocky had released several solo albums containing material he'd written that didn't fit Waxwing's style while Cody's other band, The Blood Brothers, had gained significant popularity.

The band's 2001 release, Intervention: Collection+Remix, collected the band's numerous vinyl and compilation appearances and a handful of live and rare tracks. In 2002, the band released Nobody Can Take What Everybody Owns and toured briefly in support of the album. In early 2003, the band announced they were taking an indefinite hiatus to focus on their other projects, which now included Gajadhar's role as drummer for Gatsbys American Dream. The band officially broke up in late 2005, stating simply "we are finally calling it quits."[1]

In 2013 the band briefly re-united to play two shows in Seattle at The Black Lodge and The Vera Project on August 23rd and August 24th, respectively. They also played a live session for the radio station KEXP. In an interview with Seattle website The Stranger in April 2013 Rocky Votolato claimed that the band were working on new music, stating "We have been writing since early this year and can't wait to record another record. Not sure when that will happen but we're definitely planning on it." Rocky also claimed the band had "hopefully many more [live shows] to come". However as of July 2018 no new music or live shows have materialised and the band has not updated their Facebook page since January 2014. [2]

Post-Waxwing projects[edit]

Rocky Votolato has since enjoyed a successful alt-country solo career. Cody Votolato played in The Blood Brothers until their breakup in late 2007. During this time, he was also in Head Wound City with Jordan Blilie, the vocalist for The Blood Brothers, and members of The Locust. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon and is the guitarist of Jaguar Love with Johnny Whitney, The Blood Brothers' other vocalist.

Rudy Gajadhar played drums in Bugs in Amber (with Rocky's older brother, Sonny), and also played with Gatsbys American Dream until the release of their 2006 self-titled album, after which point the band went on an unofficial hiatus. The rest of his band went on to play in other bands, not reuniting until 2010.

Andrew Hartley also played as a member of the band Lightheavyweight during the time that Waxwing was active. They released one album on Your Best Guess records before disbanding (members went on to play in Slender Means, which features Rocky's older brother Sonny). He also recorded a track with vocalist James Koppert available as a free download on Myspace under the name 'Vacant Hand Puppet'.


Studio albums[edit]

Compilation appearances[edit]

  • Living Silent (Status Recordings, 1998) - Track "Charmageddon"
  • Split 7" with The Casket Lottery (Second Nature Recordings, 2000) - Track "Laboratory"
  • This Changes Everything (Second Nature Recordings, 2001) - Track "Laboratory"
  • Copper Press Presents ... Volume 13 - Track "Color"