1.Individually, who were some of your biggest inspirations? Collectively, who can you all agree on that influences your sound? Individually, our influences are all across the board -- there's definitely some crossover and I think that's why, collectively, our sound is such a mix of genres. It's really pulled from everything we've been influenced by throughout the years. I love Beatles, Rolling Stones, Bruno Mars
Edison -Red Hot Chili Peppers/Flea, Feeder, Frank Turner.
Rob our drummer is all about Taylor Hawkins, Josh Freese, Dallas Green/City and Colour.
Michael O'Grady - Angus Young, Dave Grohl, Slash.
Nolan - Billy Joel, Kendrick Lamar and his dad. We all love Nolan's dad.
2. What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned working with industry veteran Randy Jackson? Randy has always told me everything amazing always takes time. Rome was not built in a day. It is really important to remember that we're so blessed to be in the position we are in now and have this opportunity - even though, at times, it can be really difficult. We've become so much tighter as a band and excited for everything to come.
3. What do you want to do differently compared to other bands out there at the moment? I respect every band and artist for what they are doing. As a band, we're trying to really create our own path, to make the best music possible. Our music comes from our own life experiences and a lot of people already are relating to our lyrics - that's really the goal, to connect with people and maybe our music helps you through a tough day or makes an awesome day even better. Music is fun. It's art. It's creative. It makes us happy and our fans happy!
4. What has been the defining moment of your career so far? The band is really fresh so every moment is a defining moment for us and we take every opportunity we get - the whole process has been awesome. Recording the EP, rehearsals, traveling around the U.S., performing at SXSW, morning shows, radio interviews... We are stoked for all the stuff we have done and we can't wait to see where we are in the next few months now that our debut single "Can It Be You?" is out.
5. Who would be your dream collaboration? I think it would be cool to add a hip hop element. Someone like Kendrick Lamar. At the same time, right now us 5 are really trying to define our own sound and continue to grow our fanbase.
6. “We Ride” is very different in comparison to some of your other songs, is there a story behind this song? “We Ride” was actually the transition from me (Jackson) as a solo artist to the band. It's a really honest song. It is a moment, I feel a lot of people go through, where people feel down and out about the current situation you are in or the current feeling. And while the sound is a bit different from our EP, it's all about experiences and emotions. North of Nine’s music is really a fusion of genres and I appreciate that, too. When you listen to the "Alive" EP, and “We Ride” - it is all just very honest.
7. As up and coming artists, what’s one piece of advice you would pass on to other musicians looking to make it? Throughout my career, I've had ups and downs and I definitely have learned that in the industry you can always feel things are going great – and then something takes a turn for either the better or worse. You really have to roll with the punches because nothing is set in stone and you are only as good as the way you handle the struggle. So, all I would say to them is never give up on what you are doing. Never let anyone say you cannot do something. And on the other end, never settle for what may seem like the best. Stay humble and keep going because there is always more out there. At the end of the day, your music is going to find the right fan base, so keep doing what you are doing and love what you do as well.
8. “North of Nine” is an interesting name. Where did it come from? I think in life it is really important to find your true north. The one thing you are constantly striving for that gets you out of bed everyday. We are five young guys, who found each other and now play music together and we have really found that this is what we want to do and we wanna be on this road together. We think it is really amazing, we all created this and we are excited for the future.
9. Since being in this group, what have you learned from each other? Patience is key, understanding is one of the most important things. When people are in such close quarters and you are always around each other, you are going to sometimes hit rough spots. That is the same with any relationship/friendship. We have been learning so much from each other and getting tighter as a band. We are all constantly growing.
By: Jackson Guthy