In your opinion, what is the most important thing in songwriting?
Communication. Definitely. This whole relationship between the artist and the audience is based on what you have to say to them and the way in which you say it. It doesn’t matter what anybody’s backgrounds are, or how how many years you studied jazz. or whatever. Songwriting is the great equalizer. If you can strum it on a guitar and your audience feels something or can relate or identify with you, you have succeeded. Nothing else truly matters.
Are you ever scared of revealing aspects of your personal life/experience to strangers through your music?
I definitely used to be but now I’m afraid of being too self aware and staying true to my emotional impulses. There are definitely times, like, right before I go onstage that I think about how insane what I’m doing is, but I feel very privileged that people care about what I’m doing. However, that oversharing does bleed into my every day life a little bit now… Constantly in fear that I’ll reveal too much to a bank teller or something, but I can live with that.
What is the best lyric that you ever wrote (the most meaningful for you)?
There’s a line in Love Interest that goes… “and maybe ‘finally’ will be someday soon.” That’s always been an important lyric to me. We all fantasize about the moment in our lives when we finally catch the rabbit, whatever it is. But more important than catching it, is the hope of catching it and feeding that hope with action. Chase vs. catch // hope vs. none. There’s also a lyric in “Semester” that goes; “I’ve been so down while feeling fine…” I had been searching for a way to say that forever and I think a lot of people know what that’s about.
What inspired “Semester”, part of “The Strawberry EP”?
Lyrically, ‘Semester’ is all about surrendering to someone or something. Most of us have whole periods of our lives that are defined by one person… And when that person leaves, returning to your normal life feels strange. Almost as if the world moved on behind your back. Musically, it came together the way the best things do; in 20 minutes, while we were working on something else.
What inspired “Limelight”?
‘Limelight’ was originally supposed to be a ballad. I had written it on an acoustic and recorded a rough version of it in my shower. The song’s about imperfect love and the nobility in fighting for it. It wasn’t until we were in the rehearsal room and playing it all together, that I finally understood what I was trying to really say with the lyrics. That’s what great bands do. They tell you what you mean. It’s just so funny that something I had intended to be the most gentle song the band would ever do, became one of the wildest instead… But that’s the magic of this whole damn thing and I’m so happy with how it came out.
Is there a link/a common theme among the songs of the new EP?
The further rejections of an optimist.
What is the best suggestion your producer gave you?
This EP was actually completely produced by the band, so there were no parents present during this recording. I am happy to include a detailed account of our many creative arguments if you’d like 🙂
What are your plans for 2019?
We’re going to usher The Strawberry EP into the world… SXSW, East Coast and we’re headlining The Teragram Ballroom in LA on March 8th. But after all of that, we’re going to immediately go into the studio to make the first full length Dear Boy record. We’ve already written it and so we’re super super anxious to get started.
To conclude the interview a short Q/A session, please answer the first thing that comes to your mind:
• Define “The Strawberry EP” in one word: Ripe.
• The best show you ever played: Our headlining show at The Troubadour last year celebrating Love Interest… I’ll never forget it.
• The one thing that you must have backstage: A quiet corner.
• The soundtrack of your childhood: The Beatles // Punk (1st & 2nd wave & all the embarrassing stuff too)
• Your favorite song lyrically speaking, but not written by you: This week it’s “Inside Susan” by Pulp & “Cornerstone” by Arctic Monkeys
• Last question is “unusual,” we want to know your best relationship advice: Find somebody who likes to spend the same amount of time in a museum as you.