With a name that exudes a level of childhood innocence found in a grade school classroom and catchy pop hooks backed with cellos and violas that get heads bobbing, Our Cat Philip’s music isn’t easily defined in the Columbus music spectrum.
“We usually call ourselves string-driven folk,” says Max Sollisch, who sings and plays guitar, banjo and piano in the group. “We’ve come up with the term ‘kindergarten rock,’ because our name kind of sounds like a bunch of kids got together to write music about their cat.”
Most of the members of the group met while attending Ohio State and have been playing together for a little over a year. Sollisch, along with Nick Held (drums, keyboards, guitar and vocals) and Jeremy Hendricks (bass, cello and vocals) started playing under the moniker Our Cat Philip around campus bars. “I didn’t really ever think I would be playing cello on stage with a band,” says Hendricks. “When Max found out that I played cello, he wouldn’t leave me alone until I brought it to school so we could mess around with it.” The band later added Emily Ng (viola, piano and guitar) to add more depth to their sound.
Once OCP developed a following in Columbus and Cleveland the group recorded their debut album Apart of Someone this year, releasing it in August. The album captures the group from its upbeat poppy backing vocals to its slower moments of melancholy emphasized by the strings. The group made the album available for a voluntary donation through their website, a practice that isn’t as common among local bands. “We just think it’s really important to get our music out there,” says Held. “We have fans outside of Columbus that would have a hard time getting the record. This makes it easier.”
For more information on Our Cat Philip go to www.ourcatphilip.net