Pokerface, Spring 2003
by Melissa Evanko
Remember when music used to have meaning? Sit back for a second and get past all the bubble gum get happy riffs on the radio today. Think of music that inspired you; made you want to be more than just an observer in the game of life. The band that wants to wake you up is Lehigh Valleys own Poker Face. In an exclusive interview for "The Stage" Paul Topete, lead singer of Poker Face, sat down to talk with us about the band and "politiks."
Poker Face is based out of Allentown PA, and consists of Paul Topete, lead vocalist, guitar and keyboard, Dennis Beidler, bass and vocals, Brett Griffiths, lead guitar and Rich Valentin, drums.
Poker Face was formed out of Topete’s concern that the masses were not aware of their government. Back in the 60’s, Topete laments; there were all these cool political bands. He feels that now as long as "the beer is flowin and sports are showin" people are happy. He feels that people are being bilked out of their rights as American citizens by the government. He is proud to report that there is a freedom movement and more bands like his are starting to appear.
The song that Poker Face performed on "The Stage" was ‘Please Brother, Dear Brother," from their Sex, Lies & Politiks CD. The guys choose this song because of its message that we should try to love one another instead of hate.
Listening to Poker Face from their first recording. "Game of Love" to now there is a definite change. Topete admits that at first he wanted the band to be the next Beatles. In the 90’s with tragedies such as Waco and the 1st World Trade Center bombing, times were getting worse. Topete felt the need to address the situations around us, all the injustices being done. In 1994 Paul wrote "America" and he hasn’t looked back since.
MIA aka Made in America is the title of the new Poker Face album set to be released sometime in June. Giving us a preview of what to expect with the new release, Topete describes this album as heavy in politics but also touching on the bands spiritual roots.
A few times a year Poker face heads to Washington D.C. to participate in rallies.They will go to support such issues as hemp legalization and to protest taxes. The government may act as if they are ignoring them. but Topete feels that in reality this gives the protestors more credibility.
Topete is a fan of the Lehigh Valley music scene. He feels that this scene is better than most of the vast areas the band has performed in. "No one can be an island, all need to put forth an effort to make a scene."
You can check out Poker Face on the web at www.pokerface.com. The site is full of information, including a forum. Although the music is part of the message, long after the last chord has been struck Topete and his message will still be loudly heard
Post anything thoughts/comments you may have related to our music. We have four discs out; Made In America, Sex lies and Politiks, Next!, and Game of love. We would love to hear from you....
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