Parachute Talk "The Way It Was," Civil War, Tweeting Twizzlers and More
Tue, 25 Jan 2011 08:48:17
Parachute are about to land with their second album The Way It Was, which is erected upon one very important musical construct: melody. The Virginia band is known for mixing rock with a smattering of blue-eyed soul, vintage R&B and power pop with their full on respect for melody and the result is unforgettable songs that turn heads and embed themselves into your brain. Two songs from their debut album Losing Sleep were used in Nivea skincare commercials and lead to a New Year's Eve play in Times Square in 2008. Therefore, Parachute have set themselves up nicely for their future, and their promising future is now.
ARTISTdirect.com news editor Amy Sciarretto spoke with vocalist/guitarist Will Anderson about the importance of melody, being a Civil War history buff, Twizzler Tweets and his favorite '80s memories/influences.
What's the Twitter-sized bio of Parachute - everything I need to know?
We're five best friends who started a band in high school, continued through college and we get to do it for a living.
How are you navigating doing a job many fail at for a living? Is it as much of a struggle as we might think?
In terms of getting to do what we want with our music and literally and generally speaking, it is easier now than when we were in college, since we have been out of school a few years now. We can concentrate on playing, writing and recording music and now it's easier than juggling that and school. It is beneficial and great to concentrate on this.
Is there any pressure since this is how you make a living and is your financial means?
We can care less about money. We've been doing it since we were 15. We are not doing it to get famous but because we love playing music with each other as best friends. It has always been a general feeling of making music together with 5 people. It doesn't feel like a job. It's the best opportunity in the world to hang and play music.
You have said that with Parachute, melody is king and I am not disputing that it is, but why is it royal in your mind?
I think great bands that make great music and albums and songs that hold up need to play them with acoustic guitar and the voice. If you cannot sing it to someone and have them know it's great, then it's not a great song. I am not harping on any artist in particular, but songs on the radio have the benefit of great production, but if you strip it down to the melody and they stand in front of you and sing it, it won't hold up unless it has a melody. You can build it up with bigger production but you don't always need to when you have a good melody. I know that sounds cocky, but a lot bands make a quick buck through catchy songs, but not because of a great melody. Our goal has been to find melodies that last and hold out when the songs are stripped down.
When is the album coming out?
Later this Spring and the first single goes to radio in February. It's the best album we've ever made, hands down, quite honestly. If you don't like the music or even the style, you can at least respect it, because we're writing our own music and our own songs. It's good and that's my opinion. But it could be biased. [Laughs]
What else are you into besides music?
I love history books. That's all I read. That's my jam. I am a Civil War guy. Our guitarist is a World War II buff. That is the extent of our intellectual conversation between us.
Why are you into the Civil War?
It's an interesting period in our country's history, with Americans siding against each other and America splitting into two different countries.
Where do you pick up history books? Do you think fans will start bringing you books once they read this?
I have a stack of eight books at end of my bed, since I've been home. I would love if they would bring me books. They bring me Twizzlers.
I Tweeted about Twizzlers once randomly. I Tweeted a picture of them and from there on out, at every show, everyone brings me Twizzlers. It's a never-ending supply. My dentist hates me.
What's your most necessary road item? Besides history books?
I have to take our video camera on the road. That's one thing I never go without. I document everything on the road.
Have you heard Parachute yet?