Posted: September 13, 2011
BALTIMORE (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) -- Ballyhoo!’s sound, devotion to the road and to their fans, partnered with their “life of the party” approach have pitched them into the position of America’s feel good party band. They didn’t get here by accident;
rather, they have single-handedly grown their empire through unparalleled hard work and dedication until Jan 2011, when they got a well-deserved nod, signing with the Hawaii-based indie label LAW Records. Yesod Williams of the dub rock music mega-sensation PEPPER and owner of LAW Records says of his newest addition, “Having Ballyhoo! join the LAW Records family is a perfect fit. They are an incredibly talented band with a really catchy style”. Now, with the backing of LAW, 2011 promises to be a paramount year on Ballyhoo!’s trajectory.
Ballyhoo! has toured the country with some of the biggest and most respected names in the reggae rock genre – 311, Authority Zero, Pepper, The Supervillains. “It’s always intimidating when playing for another band’s crowd, you never know how they’re gonna react,” explains front man Howi, “but then you see that they’re enjoying it and the worry goes away. You’re free to rock at that point!”. Ballyhoo! will start their tour of the southeast with fellow label mates Iration in February 2011. Their rigorous, nonstop nationwide touring schedule has certainly been the catalyst for the exponential growth in their fan base. Ballyhoo! fans are some of the most loyal and enthusiastic fans out there and their love for the band runs deep.
1 - Where did you come up with the name for your new CD, DAYDREAMS?
Howi Spangler: It came from a lyric in one of the new songs called "Sandcastles". "Just like a daydream, it feels so amazing, don't wake me up."
Basically started thinking about how music can take you away and put you in a better place. This is relatable to daydreaming at work or school, its always better in a daydream, ya know?
Then the art work came to mind. I had this vision of a moon and a sun, representing the dark times and the positive good times. The floating "yellow brick road" in the sky is a fret board which stands for music taking you to that place.
2 - What was your inspiration for the whole album?
H: We didn't really have a direction or theme for the album at first. We started out with about 21 songs and jams. As we worked through them, I started getting ideas for the lyrics and subject matter from the way the music made me feel. What we ended up with were songs about the feelings of dealing with life coming at you. Questioning love life, seeing people for who they are, good and bad. I've always been a bit of a pushover and getting older, I've learned to stand up and speak more than ever.
We took all of that and tried to make a positive, uplifting piece of music so listeners might feel like we're on their level. The last song on the album, "Ricochet", says simply "Don't look away, you're gonna make it there someday". It's straight to the point and can be related to any issue someone could be having. It’s our "coming-of-age" album. Ha ha....
3 - Are you doing anything special to celebrate the release on September 6th?
Scott Vandrey: Well I’m sure we’ll crack a bottle or two of bubbly or something to celebrate on the 6th! It will be the second day of tour with Pepper so we’ll definitely get those guys in on the celebration. As for an actual record release party, we won’t be able to do that until we’re back home, and we’re planning on tying that it with our 5th Annual Halloween Monster Bash at the end of October. It’s a big costume party / show that we’ve been doing in the Baltimore area for a while now (guess how many years!). It’s usually our biggest show of the year that we put on, so adding a record release celebration to it should make it a helluva party!
4 - What is your favorite track off the album?
H: "The Getaway" is a slammer. I love that one. It's one of those songs I always wanted to write. I had the intro riff and the basis for the chorus and we started jamming in the studio. JR came up with the Soundgarden/311 bridge line and it turned out awesome!
I love "Evil Penguin" for the same reason. Just slams all the way through.
S: My favorite has been rotating since we recorded; right now I’m really feeling ‘The Getaway.’ It starts out rocking, has a driving verse that reminds me of an old western horse chase, a huge chorus, and it finishes with an anthem-like chorus reminiscent of ‘Bro Hymn’ by Pennywise, who have been one of my favorite bands since the mid 90’s. It also has one of the most randomly awesome and awesomely random drum fills ever right in the beginning. Finally, it’s the only song where I’ve been able to fit in some cool sounds that I can say were influenced by my days of producing Drum and Bass tunes.
5 - The first single, "Say I'm Wrong", is out now and there is going to be a music video for it coming out soon...when and where will that be released and how was it shooting your first music video?
S: The video will be coming out a few days ahead of the record. Initially it will be exclusive to MusicBailout.net for a few days, but then it will be on all of the typical online hosts (YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, etc.).
I had an absolute blast shooting the video! Basically spent a perfect day in a cool beach town in Florida, riding around town on a scooter with a beautiful girl! Hard to complain about that… The ‘acting’ scenes were a little weird at first, as was the lip syncing and playing with nothing plugged in for the live shot, but we got used to it all after a couple takes. Definitely a new experience! Looking forward to the next one for sure.
6 - You are getting ready to head out on the Last Calls & Liabilities tour with The Expendables and your LAW Records label mates, Pepper...what are you looking forward to most?
S: Definitely looking forward to hanging with the Pepper guys again, have played a few shows with them in the past and had a great time both on and off stage. We’ve been playing the same circuit with The Expendables for YEARS now, but have never met the guys or played a show with them, so very stoked to finally do that. It’s also going to be a nice change to do a big national tour as an opener. I love headlining shows, but there’s certainly something to be said for getting done early and being able to crack a beer, relax, enjoy the other bands, and mingle with the crowd after our set.
7 - If you could do a national tour with any 2 bands (still together or not), which ones and why?
S: Hmmm…excellent question… SLAYER AND SLIPKNOT!!!! I think their fans would LOVE us!! And I would never get sick of watching their sets…
Realistically, I would love to do a tour with RX Bandits. Have been a big fan of their music for a few years and have seen a couple live shows, which are absolutely fantastic. Their energy level on stage is through the roof, and that’s something we strive for ourselves. It’s always easier to achieve that when you’re touring with a band whose performance pushes you to take it to the next level.
We’ve done several shows with 311 in the past, and based on those experiences, I would love to do a full national tour with them. Besides the obvious reasons (big crowds, great band, compatible music, great fans, nice guys, etc.), they’ve been doing it for so long now that they and their crew are absolute professionals at every aspect of touring and putting on shows. Every time we’ve done a show with them, we’ve learned something new about the behind-the-scenes part of doing big tours.
8 - If there was ONE thing about your band that you wanted everyone to know, what would it be?
H: We can change a tire fast as shit! We're seriously one rachet-turn from being a fucking pit crew!
S: WE AREN’T GOING AWAY!! We’ve been at this game for a long time. It’s been a crazy and often times difficult journey, but it has always been progressing onward and upward. Thanks to all our fans who’ve supported us along the way! CHEERS!
9 - Any last words?
S: Beware the Evil Penguin.
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