Fewer and fewer people are buying CDs anymore. Whether it’s because they’re illegally downloading songs, paying for them through iTunes or just listening through a free Pandora station, people like to listen to music selectively.
They don’t want an artist’s whole CD because they might only like a few of the songs. But how about compilations, when every song is by a different artist? And no, I’m not talking about those “Now” CDs. What are they on, 40 by now?
Albums like Rockin’ Romance 2, a follow-up to the original Rockin’ Romance released in 2009, was released June 15, and each featured artist has their own story.
“People compare us a lot to like Third Eye Blind and kind of a late 90s kind of thing.” – Andy Albert
Andy Albert, lead vocalist for Holiday Parade, loves the song his band got to cover for the album: “Slide,” by the Goo Goo Dolls.
“It’s been one of my favorite songs since like 7th grade,” Albert said. “I always thought this song would be a great fit for our sound and our style and we went with it and it turned out great.”
Holiday Parade, like many bands, started in Albert’s college dorm room.
“I had been writing songs forever, high school, middle school,” Albert said. “I wrote this collection of songs that I felt really strong about. So I called one of my old friends who had a studio and recorded a 10-song full-length.”
After that, Albert said the band posted it on MySpace and gained ground there, specifically through a promotion from Verizon Wireless. Their songs began to play on local radio stations not long after.
“One thing led to another and we started playing shows as a band together and kept making records,” Albert said.
One of Albert’s most recent memories was the band’s two-week trip to Japan in the spring.
“It’s very different,” Albert said. “Their customs and cultures are super different over there. Everyone is incredibly respectful and it’s crazy. It was very eye-opening going over there and seeing how they do shows.”
As for what’s next, Albert said new music is in the works. There isn’t a plan for it, but he said recording and touring afterwards, this fall or so, would be ideal.
“It’s super corny and super cheesy and not that great, I guess.” – Grant Harris
That was Grant Harris’ contribution to the new Rockin’ Romance album. One might call Harris the brains of Breathe Electric, who covered “Never Gonna Give You Up” originally by Rick Astley.
“I’ve always kind of weirdly liked that song a lot,” Harris said. “Rockin’ Romance, when they asked me to do a song on it, it kind of gave me that excuse to kind of go all out and have fun with it.”
That’s not all he’s done. Breathe Electric is the only unsigned band to have played all of the 2010 Vans Warped Tour.
“It’s incredible,” Harris said. “We’re so thankful to be given the opportunity to do all of Warped. We played two shows (at Warped) last year and we never dreamed we would have been able to get on the entire tour this summer unsigned.”
Breathe Electric’s most recent album, Lovestruck, was also released June 15. Harris said the album was recorded at two different times, half about seven months ago and the other half only a couple of months ago.
“On my last album it was kind of I didn’t know which way to go,” Harris said. “Half the songs are real electronic and the other are more organic, full band. For this album, I think I kind of found the middle ground, the real Breathe Electric sound, if you could call it that.”
This fall, Breathe Electric will be touring across the country again, hitting the Attic in Dayton with Jonny Craig Sept. 8.
“We realized that we didn’t know anything about band or orchestra instruments whatsoever.” – Rachel Taylor
Rachel Taylor didn’t think she’d end up starting a band when she began a job at an instrument rental shop for young kids. Then she met Trevor Kelly, and the two instantly bonded over their taste in music.
“We kind of confided in one another and we started talking about music and we both liked really hardcore bands and metal stuff,” Taylor said. “We started talking about that and then we talked about how funny it would be if we started a band, some kind of cool acoustic project or whatever.”
Taylor said the two started writing and were shocked at how well their chemistry worked. They began recording and before they knew it, He Is We had become a full touring band.
He Is We covered Iyaz’s “Replay,” a song Taylor said the band uses to warm up. She said the band had envisioned a more acoustic song to be featured on Rockin’ Romance, something more like He Is We’s sound, and they were surprised to hear the other tracking added to the album during production.
So what are you waiting for? Go listen.