What was the beginning pint for your music career? How did it all start?
As far as each of us goes, we all had starts at various points in our lives (especially the “old” guys!) In regards to Hey Radio, it all started with a cold beer haha.
In all seriousness, Ian, Adam, and founding member Elton met up at a bar to discuss resurrecting Adam and Elton’s old metal band. The three of us were jamming, working on a couple of their older tunes and writing new ones, and things were going okay with just the two guitars and vocals.
One day, Ian started playing a riff that caught the guys’ attention, and he mentioned that it was from his old punk band. At that point, we decided that we’d start doing both, with the punk band being the side project to the metal band. The thought was that we’d do that almost as a Spinal Tap-type of thing, coming out as the punk band, doing the show, getting off stage, coming back as the metal band, playing that show!
The name itself came from a joke we had with some of the early songs, because the punk stuff was really catchy and radio friendly…but the lyrics definitely weren’t haha. We’d joke “Hey, radio! Play our stuff!” and the name kinda stuck.
Eventually, we were able to find a bassist and drummer as we slowly gravitated from the metal band being the primary to IT becoming the side project, because punk was definitely easier to write! After some personnel changes here and there, we landed on the lineup we have today, and we’ve definitely been gelling with our current style.
Was there any bumps on the road? What kind of challenges did you have to deal with?
With every band, there are gonna be bumps. Schedules, personalities, band direction, booking, other bands, agendas…everything can be a challenge, and we’ve experienced them all.
What was the most fulfilling and satisfying moment so far?
Probably our first festival opportunity. It was the opening night of a city-wide festival, and we were playing for a crowd that was in the thousands. We got a great response from a crowd of people who’d never heard of us, and it’s helped us become a mainstay for their festival these past few years!
How would you describe the music that you typically create?
Fun. Really fun. We like to write stuff that people can party to, skate to, chill to, just enjoy! We’re big fans of nostalgia, and a lot of what we write and play takes people back to memories of playing Tony Hawk or watching skateboard vids, as well as the punk and pop punk tunes folks would hear on those late 90s/early 2000s teen movie soundtracks!
What is your creative process like?
We usually start with a riff that someone came up with and build on it if we all vibe. Some of the riffs are ones we don’t really feel at the time, but sometimes we come back to them. Others we immediately say “Yeah, this one’s tight. Let’s make something of it!” because we just have a really strong feeling about it.
After we’ve got the initial tune ready, we build, edit, and solidify the music while Adam figures out lyrics. The results tend to be really fun!
If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
More opportunities. There are a lot of great bands out there that never get their fair shot over bands and artists that fit a certain image or style in regards to what’s popular right now, and as soon as people’s tastes change, bands get pushed away for the next big thing. It’d be great if more bands were given a fair chance to get their names out there, because there are a lot of hidden gems that deserve to be heard!
If you were asked to give a piece of advice to upcoming bands, what would that be?
Have fun, be humble, respect the craft and especially the fans. In this day and age, an artist can lose credibility in an instant, and all it takes is one bad move or attitude on your part to have a few folks sour on you. We all want to go viral in some way, but that could be the absolute worst.
Also, when it comes to writing, just remember there’s no such thing as a bad idea. What doesn’t work for now could work later, and if it doesn’t, it could work for someone else. Oh, and record everything you come up with, even if it’s just a riff. Worst thing in the world is having an idea and completely forgetting it!
Oh, and the last thing? Be nice to those who want to meet you after you play. Again with impressions, you never know who you’ll be talking to, or who they may know!
What has been the best performance of your career so far?
Oh, man. That’s hard to say, because there have been some amazing shows we’ve played. The ones that come to mind are our first release party, the first time we did a festival, our first out of town gig, and the feeling we had after the first event we truly had a hand in setting up. Just something about those shows that really stood out…the crowds, the way we played, the stage shows we gave. Just great times!
If you didn’t become a musician, what would you be doing now?
Probably the same things we’re doing now, just without the music side. Working, doing the family thing, grumbling about society. The musician side just adds some more fun to it!
What is new with the band at the moment? What are you currently working on and would like to share with the world?
Well, we’ve got a couple of albums (the “Get Loose!” EP and the “Bangers” LP, as well as a couple of standalone singles (“Everybody”, which is our BSB cover tune, and “Punk Rock Show”, which we released last year) that you can find on all the major streaming services that everyone can find and listen to, so stream to your heart’s content and give us all the pennies!
As far as right now, we’re working on a couple of EPs – the first will be all original tunes that we’re tracking, and we hope to have that out mid to late Fall. The second, well, you’ll just have to check our socials to see the announcement about that, because we don’t want to give too much away. All we can say is that it’s gonna be super fun, and to expect it sometime in 2024!