Your album “Nearsighted” is about to be released, can you share with us some crazy behind-the-scene?
For me, the craziest behind the scene aspect of the record was working with Aaron Marsh.
It’s no secret that I’ve been a massive Copeland fan since high school, so it was just a really special full circle moment to be making music with him.
My drummer Drew and I actually met for the first time at a Copeland show years ago. Some days we would just geek out on the couch together as we watched him work.
He really helped elevate the entire experience.
How do you usually write the lyrics of your songs?
Lyrics typically come to me in different ways for different songs.
Sometimes lyrics will stem from a phrase I hear in conversation, an idea I read in a book, etc.
Other times I’ll focus in on a moment that left a mark on me and try to recreate the story.
What was the soundtrack to your childhood?
My childhood was highlighted by a mixture of my mother’s 90’s country music, my older sister’s obsession with Mariah Carey, and my sneaking around listening to hip hop late at night.
I really did grow up being inspired by a diverse combination of music.
My parent’s wouldn’t let me listen to certain things, so I think that only pushed me to discover what was out there for myself. In hindsight, I’m pretty thankful for that.
Is music something that runs in your family, or were you the first to venture into the industry?
My mother always sang in the church choir when I was a kid, but other than that nobody else in my family really pursued music the way I did.
That’s not to say my family isn’t musical: my mom, dad and both sisters all have incredible voices.
My younger sister Brooke actually sang a bit on my first record! I had always had a huge appreciation for music growing up, but it wasn’t initially what I wanted to do with my life.
Believe it or not, I wanted to be a professional baseball player before I ever picked up a guitar.
How did you first get your foot into the industry?
Honestly there was never a moment where I knew I was “in the industry.”
It was spanned from playing local shows at coffee shops and churches and that branched off into doing some weekend touring.
The first real touring I ever did was with my old band Good Luck Varsity.
We traversed the country multiple times playing hundreds of shows. After that started fizzling out in 2013, I joined State Champs.
I joined up with Champs and released my first Speak Low record all within a month’s time. I guess the rest is history. It’s all about being diligent and working hard for what you want.
What has the journey been like up to now?
It’s been fun! I guess “fun” is the best word for it.
There’s nothing cooler than your hobby evolving into a serious passion and then making a career out of it.
I’ve been able to see a lot of the world I sincerely doubted I ever would have without music and I’ve met some of my best friends whilst touring.
There are so many magical connections to be made in the world, it’s just about tracking them down and being open to them.
Music has afforded me the chance to open those doors.
What is the best verse you ever wrote?
I think Contrasting Colors has some of my favorite lyrical content from the new record.
The moments depicted in that song were still so raw and fresh in my mind that they just kind of poured out in an ultra personal way. Very happy with those verses.
What inspired “Safety Net”?
Safety Net was inspired by a new relationship.
I had recently ended things with a girlfriend, and then I unexpectedly meet this exciting person that changes my mind about love.
I didn’t initially let myself fall, because I was convinced I didn’t want to, but I decided it wasn’t worth passing up something I knew wouldn’t come around again.
Obviously it goes a lot deeper than that, but that’s the outline.
Enough is a song about doing the bare minimum and only resurfacing when you want another “hit” of whatever that vice may be.
At the core it’s a picture of selfishness and greed.
It’s from the perspective of the almighty “I.”
What is the best show you ever played?
My favorite Speak Low show in recent memory was in Worcester, Massachusetts at The Palladium.
The crowd was rowdy and loud, but in a good way.
When you’re the chill band, a loud crowd is usually a bad sign but they were singing their heads off. It was cool to see so many people be invested in the new record when it had only been out for a week or so.