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They Were Roommates: Meet The Band Writing Songs From Its Quarantined Apartment

Roommates Klaus Stroink, Guillem Boltó and Rai Benet are writing and recording a new song from their Barcelona apartment every day while the city is under coronavirus quarantine.
Courtesy of the artist
Roommates Klaus Stroink, Guillem Boltó and Rai Benet are writing and recording a new song from their Barcelona apartment every day while the city is under coronavirus quarantine.

In Spain, just like the rest of the world, citizens are being asked to stay indoors. It's a tough time for musicians worldwide, but one group of roommates in Barcelona has turned their lock down into a jam session.

The group is called Stay Homas, and its members are Klaus Stroink, Guillem Boltó and Rai Benet, three professional musicians who live together in an apartment in Barcelona. They plan to release a new quarantine song every day they remain in self-isolation — which has been nearly three weeks.

They've enjoyed playing around with different genres while confined to their apartment.

"First it's a bossa nova; then it's reggae; then it's Spanish rumba; then it's Irish folk," Stroink says, "and trap."

Stroink, Boltó and Benet compose their songs in the morning and then record them on their apartment balcony in the evening. Occasionally, musician friends outside of the trio join in through pre-recorded videos. Since they've been producing new music, the Stay Homas YouTube channel has reached tens of thousands of people.

Of the comment section, Boltó says, it's largely positive with "a lot of messages that say 'I have a friend or people sick and you made me smile.' Simply a message that [we're] making someone smile? It's crazy."

Stroink, Boltó and Benet say they never expected to hear from other people; they're just happy to be surrounded by friends and making music they love, and enjoying the uniquely in-the-moment songwriting that is possible when you're stuck in an apartment with your creative partners.

"I really like the sixth one, which is like a '60s soul [song]," Stroink says. "That lyric came with the melody — that was Boltó, who was in the shower alone with his thoughts, and then he came [out] singing 'I wanna see my friends.' "

"I came out from the shower and I went — with my towel still wet — and, [said] 'Guys, guys! I have the lyrics. Listen to this!' " Boltó explains.

With Spain under quarantine for the foreseeable future, expect the steady stream of new daily music from the Stay Homas YouTube channel to continue.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Bo Hamby (he/him) is a producer and director at Morning Edition. His career in journalism started at KCRW in Los Angeles, where he spent a couple years reporting on local news before heading to the Columbia Journalism School. In 2018, he joined the Morning Edition staff. Since then, he's produced over a hundred Up First episodes, traveled to El Paso and Juarez to cover immigration and interviewed celebrities for a series of stories on their favorite artwork of the decade. He was born and raised in Singapore.

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