"We're like your Craigslist success," says Jerry Hoffman of finding the members of his group, Fried Egg Nebula through the site. "Chris (Soderman) and I knew each other but we found Dave (Grummon) on Craigslist, and before the band started Alan (Gulick) found me on Craigslist when I looking to play with some people. We really rolled the dice and got lucky," he says.
Since their formal founding just over two years ago, Fried Egg Nebula has built up their name by playing their special blend of rock music at festivals and venues all over the Midwest.
Based in the Lansing area, the group is comprised of guitarist Alan Gulick, bass player David Grummon, and drummer Chris Soderman. Hoffman sings and plays lead guitar.
But their name is more than just a play on words, says Grummon.
"The name comes from an astronomical object in the Milky Way that was found by Eric Lagadec at Cornell University - he named it the Fried Egg Nebula, and he's one of the first guys in our fan club," he says. "We sent him a t-shirt."
Under Jerry's leadership, they began playing together to develop their jam band-rock sound.
They started booking shows around the area, and took the time to concentrate on building up their onstage mix of original songs and covers. They released their album "Conduit" last Labor Day weekend.
They've played everywhere from Charlotte to Chicago - but there's one place on their band map that got a universal thumbs-up: Kalamazoo.
"We probably own a lot of our success to Kalamazoo and people in the scene," echo the group members. "If it wasn’t for the music scene in Kalamazoo I don't think we'd be playing as much as we are."
They all have separate careers and primarily play on weekends, but they love how their schedules work. Grummon, a soon-to-be retired engineering professor at Michigan State, bought an RV for the band to use on future tours.
"I'm the oldest one in this band by a fair bit, but I consider myself to be the student. I think I've learned the most in the last few years being with these guys who are consummate musicians and have been so for a long time," he says. "I've had to pull myself up more recently to be able to keep up with these guys, but it's been very good for me."
For right now, they're continuing to build up their Midwestern fan base, but Tennessee or Colorado, where Hoffman lived for six years before coming back to Michigan, could also pop up in the future. No matter what, the band agrees that it's all about the music.
"We want to just go out and just go blow people away every time we play. We want to just play the absolute best we can, and that's really what our primary focus is," says Hoffman.
Fried Egg Nebula will perform at Shakespeare's Lower Level on Friday and again at Bell's Brewery on April 10.