INTERVIEW: 3OH!3

WDAC’s Chloe caught up with 3OH!3. This two man band recently played at Leeds and Reading Festival. And have toured with the likes of Katy Perry. Which they released a song together called ‘Starstrukk’, with their second album proving popular that was released earlier last year. And their top single ‘Don’t Trust Me’ which was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America in March, Platinum in April 2009, and 2x Platinum in July 2009.

Hey, could you please introduce yourselves?
Nate: Hey, I’m Nate, and he’s Sean.

How does only having two people in the band affect your music and playing?
Sean: I think it’s a good thing because we’ve learned how to play shows with just the two of us and have that much energy and at the same time, have bands that are larger. Like we played reading and Leeds with our friends that were playing bass and drums and we add a guitar sometimes. It’s really dynamic; we can go all the way down to two people. We’ve actually done shows where there’s only been one person, because the one time I tore my vocal cords so he did the show. Another time, along time ago, I did a show too, by myself. So it’s really dynamic, like we know how to play shows on our own, as well as 6 people, so it’s cool.

How do you think the British have responded to your new music style?
Nate: It’s amazing I mean, the reading and Leeds we just played, a few days ago, was amazing. It was crazy. It was our second time out here and the tents we were playing in were completely packed out, brimming. The shows were out of control. So the future bodes very well.

Do you think your music will affect the youth of today, as some of your lyrics could be deemed controversial?
Nate: I wouldn’t give ourselves that much credit. [Laughs] I don’t think the youth is gonna be either corrupted or bettered by our music, really.

How does it feel to have sold more singles than Radiohead, and more MySpace plays than Kings of Leon and Arctic Monkeys?

Sean: It obviously means we have much better music than them! [Laughs] no I mean, that’s never gonna scale to, I think to anything is measured on. As Radiohead had a very creative way of releasing their album, giving away for free instead of paying the price and they bettered themselves for it. I don’t know, the music industry is always changing and different and i don’t think it’s a scale to measure music on for sure.

How was Reading/Leeds fest?
Sean: it was amazing, packed tent, there were people standing outside and stuff like that. It was good to see things we’d never been able to see before, like Radiohead; it was cool to be able to see them. Just an awesome, awesome experience. It’s a cool festival, unlike anything else.

Who had the best crowd?
Sean: The best crowd? Uhh, I don’t know, probably Radiohead. It was pretty epic…
Nate: Ours was big, I’ll say. Our crowd was pretty big and energetic, but definitely small compared to Radiohead. It was huge, huge, huge… like fifty, sixty thousand people!

How do you feel about your first headlining show in London selling out?
Sean: Yeah it’s cool, yeah, i mean its flattering for any band, but its definitely something that’s amazing for us, and its not like we’re gonna take it any easier. We’re gonna put on a great show and have fun either way. It’s just good that people came out, y’know?

Any plans for a full length UK tour soon?
Nate: We’re doing 5 dates in November, i think? Yeah, the beginning of November, we’re doing mainland Europe first, then all the other places. Then we’ll see, come next year…

How was touring with Katy Perry earlier this year?
Nate: It was fun, it was great yeah. It was our first time touring out here, in Europe and so, all the shows were sold out, so it was amazing for us; first time exposure to all these places. And it was fun, too. We’re good friends with Katy, from touring with her last year on warped tour last summer.

How did you guys meet up and do you have a good relationship when touring together?
Sean: We met up in school and we met up in college in our university of Colorado, Boulder and we started playing music together. When was that? 5 years ago?
Nate: Yeah, maybe six?
Sean: Yeah, six years ago. I mean, yeah, we’ve kinda built our relationship up around touring and being together and being able to cater for each other; and like I don’t know, we get space when needed, it’s all good.

Have you ever fallen out while on tour?
Sean: Not really, no, i mean, we don’t have like massive fights, just like, little tiffs.
Nate: Uh-huh
Sean: I mean honestly, we’re no Oasis [laughs].

If you could listen to one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Nate: It would be… Miley Cyrus – See You Again.
Sean: Mine would be Seal – Kiss from a Rose.

Do you think the internet has a huge role in promoting your band?
Sean: I think so because we started our band when MySpace was just starting up too, like just becoming a huge phenomenon. That was our forum rather than burning cds, we’d just put them up on MySpace. So that’s how we generally got our start. I think it’s a great springboard for new bands to try out their stuff.

Do you have particular song which is your favourite to play live?
Sean: Not really, parts of different songs are great… like don’t trust me is great, obviously, because most people know the lyrics, so like, I don’t even have to sing anymore, I can just lie the mike on the floor and leave it. It’s pretty over whelming. It’s really cool to hear.

What would you be doing now if you weren’t in 3OH!3?
Nate: I’d be in medical school, doing medicine.
Sean: I’d probably be working in a restaurant in New York or something.

What’s your inspiration for your songs?
Nate: Ouija boards, refrigerator magnets… chicks. [Laughs]

What genre of music do you consider your work to be? 
Nate: electronic, I don’t know farm party music mixed with pop, rock?
Farm party music?
Nate: Yeah! [laughs]

Who are your major influences?
Nate: Seal, definitely. Yani… there are loads, but like, y’know you forget the names because there’s so many.
Sean: Santana [laughs].

What are your rehearsals generally like? 
Nate: [laughs] We don’t even rehearse. Like, ever, do we?
Sean: There are only two of us so it’s not like we have to get bands out…
Nate: All we do is karaoke… so it’s just like; don’t forget the words of the songs. But if we have a band we generally go over the stuff. But we kinda lose our intentions when we’re out, so yeah.

What has been your biggest challenge as a band?
Nate: Probably tours and labels and stuff. Like the more your band gains success, things start to get intense and you maybe can’t control and it’s just real important to continue.
Sean: Yeah, we mostly like playing our music, y’know, writing and having fun. But there’s so much politics involved, that it’s kinda hard sometimes.

What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?
Nate: My advice is just have fun, make sure that the music you’re doing is what you want to do. The main part is just have fun. You’re making it for yourself, making things that are exciting for you, and not necessarily thinking about making it big or whatever. Just make it so you enjoy it.

What do you think of bands such as Millionaires and Brokencyde?
Sean: I don’t know, I mean they’re kind of on the same page as being a MySpace band, but they’re an entirely different band. I don’t know… they played warped tour, like, it’s not something I listen to; in fact I probably couldn’t even name one of their songs…
Nate: If they’re making it, and working hard, then it’s up to them.

What would your dream line up of artists be to play in a band be?

Nate: Justin Timberlake, singing and dancing… John Mayer would be playing guitar [laughs]. Hmm, who else? Oh the bass player from Death From Above
Sean: Yeah, totally and the drummer from Bloc Party

You did a remix of ‘Get Your Back off the Wall’ By Family Force 5, how did this come about?
Sean: we toured with them on the AP tour and they are and the singer is, a good friend of ours, so he asked if we’d do a remix and we said sure, so we just did it.

Finally, you guys are relatively new to the music scene. What do you think the future will have in store for you guys?
Sean: Hopefully more of the same, we’ve had a lot of success we’ve definitely been working for it, we’ve been on the road for over a year now, straight, touring. We’re just looking forward to writing and working with new producers and a lot of new artists. So yeah, it’s pretty exciting.

Chloe Chaplin
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