Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Mar 11th 2010 10:37AM by Jason MacNeil
How did the band form?
We've been friends with each other for a while. Ryan [Hahn] and Taylor [Rice] have known each other since middle school growing up together in Southern Orange County. Then Kelcey [Ayer] came on and started playing in a high school band with them and just playing different styles of music. About three years ago, I came on and Matt [Frazier] our drummer came on, and then about a year-and-a-half ago is when we actually became Local Natives. I guess you could say it's been a 12-year process, a year and a half of which has been Local Natives and the other has just been five guys hanging out and learning how to play music with each other.
How did you decide on the band name?
That was around the time we were writing the new stuff. It's probably what most bands do. We all went in our separate corners and kept coming up with horrible name after horrible name and everybody would put their two cents in. I thought of the name Local Natives a week into it. I just liked that sort of quirkiness or the redundancy about it but I also liked it felt like it fit musically with what we were doing at the time. All of us write in the group and it's a very communal thing and it's very group-oriented. I thought that fit really well as far as when you hear the music.
How would you describe your sound?
That is the question of questions! I don't like to describe it because it was nothing forced on us, it was just the songs and going through trial and error and just feeling each other out. The feedback we get from people outside the band that hear us for the first time is they hear the vocals because four of us sing -- three of us are lead singers -- and so they grasp onto that. And we play around a lot with the drums and the bass or rhythm side of it. They seem to be the two things that jump out when people first hear us.
Who would you say are some of the band's musical influences?
That's across the board because everybody has different things. If you went through our iPod play lists individually, you would be pretty surprised really how varied it is. I'm trying to remember what I was listening to the past few days, bands like Television or the Growlers to Black Flag, and Crosby, Stills and Nash. I think that's another reason why it took us so long as far as the writing process goes because we all come from different musical backgrounds and it's finding that happy medium. But I also think that's the beautiful part of it, that all of us just have a genuine love for music and for good songs, good albums and good artists in general.
What would you have in your festival survival kit?
In the US it's just cash. It seems like in the US every time you go to a festival it's, "You can wear shoes and your shirt and that's all you can bring in." So it seems like I bring in a lot of cash and spend it all on booze, water and sunscreen. For the few festivals we've played in the UK ... we played at Latitude and we walked into the general admission area on the days we weren't playing. You could bring in a backpack with a bottle of wine, a jug of water, a pillow and a blanket to crash out for a couple of hours if you got tired during the day. It was a different feeling for that particular festival which I thought was really, really cool.
What's been the craziest thing you've experienced on the road?
It seems like every night is the craziest night. It just feels really lucky to talk to you on the phone now in Brighton and even doing this phone call -- that in itself is crazy to me. We've been just going and going and each day something new happens. It's like, "What? We got asked to do what?" It just seems everything has been going in a positive direction. I just try not to get too far ahead of myself and not too far behind, just take it as it comes.
What is your musical guilty pleasure?
I have a lot of them. I still listen to a good amount of old hardcore punk and old death metal. When I was really young -- from sixth grade through to ninth grade -- I was a huge metal head and loved that style. Actually our sound guy for this tour is a singer in a heavy metal band, so he's the first death metal friend that I've had in years. I love being able to go through my iTunes that I used to worship when I was 13, and he's like, "Yeah! I love that song." I don't know if that's a guilty pleasure because it still holds such a place in my heart. But if you met me you wouldn't guess that.
What is your biggest vice?
I can be a stubborn a--hole sometimes because I believe in sticking up for something if you truly believe in it. But in the music industry we're learning that stubbornness isn't always the best thing when you're dealing on the business side of things.
The Beatles or the Rolling Stones?
The Beatles. I mean I just listen to the Beatles more, that's what it comes down to. If I was to calculate how much I've listened to both bands -- and I do love both bands -- I would just think the Beatles' roster would come up much higher than the Rolling Stones.