5 Questions with Aficionado
New York’s Aficionado has been quickly climbing the indie buzz-band chart this year, along with fellow No Sleep Records acts like La Dispute, Touche Amore, and Now, Now. Their musical influences are as diverse as their multi-faceted line-up (the band often has as many as 10 people on stage), making it impossible to pin them down to one genre, and subsequently has brought them admirers from across the often rigid scene battle lines. We recently caught up with guitarist Chris Tenerowicz to find out what prompted him to give vegetarianism a try.
1. How long have you been vegetarian? What influenced you to make that decision?
I became vegetarian early in high school, and maintained until a few months into college. After a year or two, I made the switch back, and have been vegetarian for three years now. In high school, it started as kind of an experiment for health reasons, but I became attracted to the ethics behind it. My mom embraced the choice from the start, and is an awesome cook that’s always cooking me something delicious when I’m home.
Recently, I’ve been doing more research into an all vegan lifestyle, which I have tried on and off in the past; I hope to make that jump permanently starting with our upcoming tour.
2. What are some of your favorite vegan/veg foods? Do you have any go-to spots you have to hit up when you’re on tour?
I get really into the idea of simple, vegetable based meals with as few ingredients as possible, like some nice stir fry or soups. I never eat enough of those though; I’m either at home and way too busy, or on tour. It’s easy in a lot of cases to grab some frozen veggie burgers or what fast food I can eat (sup Taco Bell), but I know that shit is hard on your body. It’s a good look to seek out the local food co-ops in a given area. They always have good, nutritious, tour-friendly food.
3. Of all the major animal rights issues are there any issues particularly close to your heart?
If I can get hyper specific: living in an area with a heavy student population, it’s upsetting to see pets being treated irresponsibly by their college age owners. Every animal needs a safe and loving home, not a shit-hole knee-deep with beer cans and dirty dishes.
4. If a fan were to approach you with questions about how to get involved with animal rights, what advice would you give him or her?
I would say to do your research. Animal rights issues extend to nearly every facet of our society, not just the obvious food industries. Abuse exists in laboratory research, entertainment, the fashion industry, hunting, pet breeding and ownership, nature conservation. The scope is vast, but there is an incredible community there to be a part of and participate in. Have fun. Hug a dog. Ask the owner first.
5. What does Aficionado have coming up that we can be looking forward to?
Thanks Chris! Aficionado’s self-titled release is available now, and you can read up on the band in this month’s Alternative Press.