sorts of bands 10 questions that are relevant to all musicians of any
genre. Whether you think a band is lame or amazing, not in your genre
or right up your alley, we ask questions that will be relevant to any
band reading this blog. If you like what they have to say check out
their music and see if you all like that.
Can You Keep A Secret is one of New Jersey’s hardest working bands. An unsigned band who is always on tour, and has hit the top of many websites/webstores unsigned charts with their latest release Return To Rescue. These pop-punkers were kind enough to do a quick 10 question interview with us this morning. Check out some of the awesome things they have to say after the jump.
1. What is the biggest mistake your band ever made?
Oh man…we’ve made a lot of mistakes in our short time! haha. But if I could pick one major one then that has to do with our old songwriting habits and style. We used to only write enough songs for our upcoming record. So if we were planning on releasing a 7 song EP, then we’d only write 7 songs and usually only months before hand. This was terrible! We never wrote in between record cycles. That definitely burned us in the long run. So our biggest mistake was not writing new material year round – day in and day out.
2. What is the smartest thing your band has ever done?
I think the smartest thing we have done and that we still do is talk to each other. I know it sounds simple – but it goes such a long way. Whether we talk to each other about a song we are working on or talk about issues we have with each other at a certain time – it always works out for the better. I’ve seen tons of bands let so much crap slide which ends up piling up and tearing the band apart. Even if it’s simple stuff like messing up at practice – it really does add up. I think we’ve been able to stay together and stay strong because we always talk and do not hold anything back from each other.
3. What advice can you give for a band looking to improve their live show?
Practice, practice, practice, and when you are at home deciding whether you should play that hot new video game – or practice – go with practice. And when you practice – whether alone or with the band – practice hard. Don’t overlook details that you think other people won’t notice, cause they will. I like the quote….Perfect practice makes perfect.
4. What advice can you give for a band to build up a buzz?
There are tons of ways to do this. One that has worked for us is to play shows with national acts, even if it requires you to sell an absurd amount of tickets. This works out because you get exposed to a lot of people and the show is usually covered by some media AND you get to network which is extremely valuable. You will also meet people who will talk about you and perpetuate your buzz. If none of that works – try releasing a sex tape. That seems to be the golden ticket.
5. What is the coolest piece of gear you have come across recently?
I really think my favorite piece of gear is the very simple Sans Amp Bass Driver….that thing will make any bass rig kick so much more ass with one kick of the pedal.
6. What is something you should bring on tour that most people may not think of?
We have these plastic shelves that we put in between our driver and passenger seat. Go to wal-mart, it’s like 15 bucks. It’s just 3 plastic shelves stacked onto each other and you can put sooo much stuff in there which keeps the van so organized and less stinky. So instead of hunting for the GPS for an hour underneath 7-11 bags and coffee cups and a load of other garbage – you just open that top drawer and there is everything you need. It’s such a huge help. I’d also recommend buying a solar shower from wal-mart. Only 15 bucks I think – and you fill it up with water, hang it from your trailer and shower like a real man.
7. Tell us a cool story from the recording studio?
The recording studio is always an amazing experience. Honestly my favorite thing is just seeing these songs come together and take on a real life of it’s own – living on it’s own and coming through the speakers. Other than that our stories usually involve penis jokes, vomit-inducing Internet videos, male nudity, and making phone calls to our engineer’s secret lovers (we’re looking at you Susie). Often all at the same time.
8. Tell us a cool story from the road?
We could write a book of cool and inappropriate road stories. But I’ll give you a recent one from our U.S. tour. We were in the middle of Texas and we were warned that on our way to California – DO NOT stop in El Paso or anywhere along the border. Tons of drug lords, guns, sex rings and all that. So we were on our way and we passed El Paso but still driving along the border in Arizona. I had been driving for about 4 hours and I wanted to quickly stop and stretch my legs. So we see this little shoulder where all these truckers had parked and decided that would be a good spot. Keep in mind – we are in the middle of a desert – we do not see any civilization anywhere! Every direction we look we are surrounded by hot desert and mountains. Anyway, we are pulling into this shoulder – slowly and cautiously. And just as we are about to stop we see this man – covered in dirt and wearing old raggedy clothes. He is ravenously and viciously digging through a garbage can. We are all staring in him – then he turns his head towards us and to our horror his face is covered in black dirt – his eyes look demonic and he was surely foaming at the mouth slightly. We all let out girly screams and sped away! Do not ever go to that truck stop. He will forever be known as the Arizona Zombie.
9. What is the dumbest thing you see other bands do?
The absolute DUMBEST thing I see bands do is arrive to the show – sit in their van until their set – play there 6 mediocre songs – then leave. This is the worst cause it makes every band not want to watch or talk to you and it makes every potential fan not give a shit about you. I do not think there is a single worse thing you can do for your band than this. And I see it all the time.
10. What have you learned songwriting wise recently?
We recently learned that song writing is a 24/7 job and we’ve also learned not to care so much about what we are writing in the sense of “who cares what this SHOULD sound like.” We just write all the time and try to write something that’s genuine to us. If it sounds like something else – that’s ok. If it sounds like nothing else ever heard before – that’s ok. As long as it’s genuine and a representation of us at the moment – then we are cool with it. We don’t confine ourselves anymore, we liberate ourselves. That’s the beauty of music right?