Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Monday, May 27, 2024 — Houston, TX

Tribute band ‘Suede Hedgehog’ talks inspirations, legacies

Riya Misra / Thresher

By Sarah Motteler     4/16/24 11:07pm

Last Thursday, the halls of the RMC were graced with smooth melodies and funky grooves courtesy of “Suede Hedgehog,” Rice’s very own tribute band to “Silk Sonic,” a musical duo made up of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak. Although the tiny desk concert only lasted about 20 minutes the atmosphere was electric, and Coffeehouse — their venue — was packed with listeners.

“The night was so much fun for me, full of love and camaraderie from everyone, and it was such a dream to see my vision and long-time love for performance actualized,” Gina Matos, the ‘Bruno Mars’ singer of the band, said. 

Matos, a Lovett College senior originally came up with the idea for the band: the other members joined after she reached out to the Rice Music Collective at the end of last semester to see if anyone else was interested in the idea.

Molly Kyles, the ‘Anderson .Paak’ singer for “Suede Hedgehog”, expressed a similar feeling about their performance.

“[The] camaraderie is one of the most valuable things I will take from this experience. I hope that this show inspires people to bring people together and make their creative visions a reality,” Kyles, a Lovett College senior said. 

Although Kyles said that performing live for dozens of Rice students was beyond her comfort zone,  she said that singing in “Suede Hedgehog” is very rewarding.

 “[It’s] one of the most meaningful things I’ve] had the chance to participate in during my time at Rice,” Kyles said.

Through their practices, the band members grew more talented and confident to step into the shoes of Mars and .Paak, Ethan Perryman ’23 said. 

“[Silk Sonic’s] songs may be lyrically lighthearted and simple, but they are musically quite complex. It definitely challenged all of our vocalists and instrumentalists to learn the songs,” Perryman said.

The band also became tightly knit over the months of rehearsal, according to Carmen Lizarraga, a Martel College sophomore, another musician in the band. She said that working with all of the members has been an honor. 

Many of the musicians are graduating this semester, making this both their first and last time performing for the Rice community. While “Suede Hedgehog” may not play again, its musicians hope that other students will be inspired by its example and bring their musical passions to life. 

“I hope that [Silk Sonic] can help encourage more students to perform live music around campus,” Miles Gantcher, a Martel sophomore, said. 

“It’s infectious to watch people perform something that they have a passion for or love so much,” Matos said. “There’s a lot of ‘secret’ artists at Rice, people who have randomly been playing an instrument or dancing or singing since they were little. All in all, I hope we’ve contributed to carving out the art scene at Rice just a little more, because I know there’s insane potential.”

More from The Rice Thresher

NEWS 5/24/24 11:48am
Rice Mutual Aid partners with student organizations to fundraise for Gaza

Rice Mutual Aid launched a fundraising campaign for Gaza on May 13 in partnership with 15 other student organizations at Rice, including Rice Students for Justice in Palestine, Rice Pride, the Hispanic Association for Cultural Enrichment at Rice and the Rice Muslim Student Association. RMA will direct donations towards American Near East Refugee Aid, a non-governmental organization that provides humanitarian aid and emergency relief in Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan. A day after its launch, the campaign raised over $2,000 according to RMA’s Instagram.

NEWS 5/19/24 8:57pm
Jones School breaks ground on new expansion, final project to wrap up spring 2026

The Jones Graduate School of Business will expand its building, constructing an additional 95,000 square feet around McNair Hall. Rice Business announced blueprint plans for the new $54.5 million building at its groundbreaking May 9. The new building will include multiple large classrooms, lecture halls, dining facilities, event spaces and communal areas, designed to “blend seamlessly with the campus and its surroundings.”

NEWS 5/19/24 8:45pm
Audrey’s closes in advance of Jones School expansion

After four years of operation in McNair Hall, Audrey’s closed May 10 prior to the Jones Graduate School of Business expansion. The original Audrey’s space will be cleaved by a wall during construction, Niken Prabanto, co-owner of Greenway Coffee Company, which oversees Audrey’s, said. 


Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.