I walked into Chez Andre on March 30 ready to kick back and hear some good music from East of Eli’s EP “Nothing Ordinary.” Usually the sound of some drums and guitars cue the start of a show. In this case, the fresh scent of Dolce and Gabbana’s “The One” swept past me. Lead singer Nathan West had just made his entrance. (Ladies, you may remember him as Jan from “Bring it On.”)
I was immediately pulled straight into the music and captured by the band’s undeniable talent. From the lead guitarist’s mad skills to West’s combo of powerhouse vocals and soft inflections, I was moved (especially since I grew up in a house full of musicians!). With relatable lyrics and catchy melodies, it was obvious the rest of the audience was just as impressed.
“It’s about connecting with that one person,” West shared with me after the show. “If you can connect with that one person, that’s what it’s all about.”
And he definitely did. West performed with passion and conviction – in a way that we could all relate. Standout songs included “Nothing Ordinary,” “Riptide” and “Farewell.” I especially enjoyed West’s captivating rendition of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game.”
But East of Eli’s notes were not the only thing on key that night. Behold the cool and casual stylings of Nathan West. A balanced mix of formal and casual wear worn simultaneously to achieve a GQ and rocker vibe.
Let’s just say that West totally knows how to rock the denim. His jeans by Mavi had a hint of shine – perfectly suitable for the stage. He paired them with a sharp black blazer by Hause of Howe and a gray scarf. “I’ll take a scarf over a tie any day of the week!”
To finish it all off, he threw on his “favorite vagabond grunge-style boots. It always surprises people when I tell them they’re made by Steve Madden,” West said.
And as it turns out, West ‘s fashion sense comes from guys who inspire him musically, such as Bob Dylan, Sting and Van Morrison. “It’s classy with a funk to it.” He’s also a fan of designer John Varvatos.
It’s not just wardrobe that factors into personal style. West revealed the two products he never leaves home without — Bumble and Bumble Straight Blow Dry (how he must get that effortlessly sleek ponytail) and Dolce & Gabbana’s “The One” cologne. The fragrance is made with coriander, grapefruit, basil, ginger, orange blossom, cardamom, amber, cedar and tobacco. No wonder West made such a powerful entrance.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR EAST OF ELI
They play at Soho House New York on April 25th at 10pm and West will star alongside his wife in an independent film they produced together, “Into the Mystic.”
West, who admires Duke Ellington and world music said, “You can never be good enough. You can never stop writing.”
– Michelle Weiss