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How do you usually write the lyrics of your songs?

I usually start off recording myself singing whatever words spontaneously come to me over chords or a riff I’ve come up with just to mostly get a feel for the melody. After that I’ll go back through the recording and write lyrics around whatever it seems like I was trying to express in that moment.

In your opinion, what is the most important thing in songwriting?

I would say it’s a tie between having a strong melody and honest/meaningful lyrics. 

Are you ever scared of revealing aspects of your personal life/experience to strangers through your music?

Never. I think music is sometimes the best and easiest way for me to express those aspects. Those personal life experiences are usually the best inspiration and motivation for a song.

What is the best lyric that you ever wrote (the most meaningful for you)?

I don’t know if I have a best lyric mostly because I think I get a little better with writing with each new song. If I had to pick, there’s a line I like in our song “Easier as it Goes” that’s about being away from family

feel it in my bones

any time youre not with me

but youre still not far from home

and thats where my heart will be

What inspired “Moonlight”, part of your latest EP? And “Cry”?

Cry is about a bad breakup – wanting someone to “cry” and feel as miserable as you do even though the hurt feelings might be entirely your own. It’s also a warning from the “dump-ee” to the “dump-er” basically not to come around anymore – basically trying to cover up being hurt with a layer of toughness.

Moonlight is about anxiety. Sometimes when I’m up at night, worries running through my mind, it almost feels like my fears are having a party in my brain and I’m the cranky, old neighbor next door yelling at them to “turn it down!”. I thought it would be interesting to actually personify those fears almost as monsters, partying in the “moonlight” ultimately its about learning that anxiety is something you have to co-exist with. If you cant stop the “party” you might as well join in kind of sentiment.

Do you remember the day you wrote “Scars”?

I do! I had come up with the riff and basic melody for the song and Natalie, who was the second vocalist for the band in its early days, came over to my college apartment and helped me plot the whole thing out. We wrote my favorite part of the lyrics together – I threw out “I’ve been slandered and libeled” and she came up with the next line “bruised by the Bible” which is one of my favorites.

What was the best moment of your career? And the most difficult one?

I’d like to think the best moments are still coming! But the very first time we got in our van and hit the road for a tour is definitely a highlight.

Worst moment is a tie between two horrible gigs – one was a pay-less gig where we essentially opened for karaoke night, to an empty bar with zero applause, just to have everyone pour in right after we finished and give roaring applause to the karaoke singers. Basically Karaoke headlined that night and crushed it.

The other was a restuarant gig where the sound guy and owner clearly hadn’t listened to us before booking us, immediately told us to turn down during soundcheck, and then basically told us not to play any of our original music and just play “blues standards.” We agreed to those terms, for whatever reason, just to have everyone in the restaurant walk out anyway.

What are your plans for 2018?

We’re releasing our second album, which is a really big thing for us – so a lot of promotion for that. We’re also definitely hoping to keep getting bigger and better gigs and hopefully get on a festival or two.

To conclude the interview a short Q/A session, please answer the first thing that comes to your mind:

  • Define in one word your self titled EP: Raw.
  • The best show you ever played: Blind Bobs in Dayton, OH.
  • The one thing that you must have in your backstage: Right now I’ll totally settle just for water and/or beer since that seems to be a rarity in and of itself.
  • The soundtrack of your childhood: The Bee Gees and the first Alvin and the Chipmunks album on cassette tape.
  • Your favorite song lyrically speaking, but not written by you: I have so many favorites! “Needle and the Damage Done” by Neil Young is definitely up there. “Dogs” by Pink Floyd too.
  • Last question is “unusual”, we want to know your best relationship advice: Find someone you can effortlessly talk to, and always be honest and open with them.
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