Echosmith spent the entire summer of 2013 traveling all across the country on the Vans Warped Tour, gaining a good amount of fans along the way. Since doing time on Warped, their debut CD entitled Talking Dreams was issued via Warner Brothers Records, featuring standout tracks such as Cool Kids and Come Together. The Toluca Lake, CA based band is back on the road again, as part of The Other Side Tour with Tonight Alive, The Downtown Fiction, and For The Foxes. Highwire Daze trekked it over to The Roxy Theatre on the world famous Sunset Strip to talk with lead vocalist Sydney about the current tour, all things Warped, metal and screamo bands, the special relationship Echosmith shares with their fans, and other topics. And now backstage from The Roxy, a report from The Other Side Tour with Sydney Sierota…
How has this current tour with Tonight Alive been going and what have been some of the highlights for you?
It’s been so fun, it’s so cool, because we’re friends with all the bands. We didn’t even know The Downtown Fiction before this, but we’re all really close now, so it’s fun to tour with friends. So that’s been a really cool part about it. But also the fan interaction has been awesome. It’s just been awesome to see fans come out and see us, and singing along to all the songs. It blows my mind every time – every night – even though it happens more and more now – it’s still so unreal. Some of my favorite things about this tour – when we have signings after every show – you have conversations that you never would have been able to have if I wasn’t doing this. Some people, for some reason, feel more open with a band member rather than even their parents or their friends. It’s very interesting seeing that, and seeing how broken most of these kids are and how they’re going through depression or stuff like that. And it’s just crazy to hear kids tell me that and ask me for advice – or saying that our song helped them through that. So that’s been my favorite part of this tour – getting to talk to kids about that. If I was just some random person not in a band, I would never have that conversation and have that opportunity to tell someone that they are loved – even by me. Even though I just met them – you have a certain amount of compassion for people. And it’s just been a really cool experience and cool to see people really care – and to become friends with these kids. I mean, they’re mostly my age, so it’s fun for me. We got to go to places we’ve never even been before, and still see a lot of support there, which has been really cool.
How does a tour like this compare to a summer on Warped Tour?
It’s very different. Indoors is one difference. The weather of course affects you a little bit. It’s really cold now – and then it’s so hot in the summer. They both were great tours, and both a lot of fun in their own ways. Warped Tour is a lot about discovery mostly, for us – and this tour has been a lot of fans that we already had coming back. So it’s been a really cool process.
Now that you’re veterans of Warped Tour, what advice would you give a new band about to do it for the first time next year?
I would say work hard, because it really does pay off – it really does! That’s one tour that you can say that, for sure. And also get over the fact that most people don’t know you – really – there’s so many kids at Warped Tour, that there’s bound to be a very big group that has no idea who you are. So you kind of have to get over that idea, and go out there and introduce yourself to other fans. You know what we did every day at Warped? We walked the lines and go up to kids – every single one that we could until doors – and say “Hey, I am Sydney and I am in a band called Echosmith. You should come check us out at this stage at this time.” And some people are like “Cool!” and some people are like “No thanks!” and I’m like “Cool!” You can’t get everyone! And then there’s some people – we would go out and pass out pins, or hair ties or CD’s. You have to really work hard if you want people to show up and if you want people to care. And even people who didn’t even see our set – they got a CD or they got a pin that we handed out – in the beginning of the day, they had no idea who we are and now we’re supposedly their favorite band. It’s crazy how it works! You have to work hard – and be original too! And you want to stand out and you want people to stop and be like, “Oh, this is different – this is cool!” So that’s kind of what we did this summer, and it worked really well for us.
What did you think about all the screamo and metal bands who were on the tour?
It’s funny – what I think about them is that they’re some of the nicest people on the entire tour. It’s the weirdest thing! For some reason, something about screamo music – maybe they’re angry because their SCREAMING! But some of my favorite people on the tour were in screamo bands like The Chariot – they’re the nicest guys in the world and they were so great to us! They took us under their wing a little bit. We made friends with a lot of the bands – but some of our good friends were from screamo bands. Of course, I’m not always listening to screamo – but Warped Tour, I heard it a lot – which is fun and it’s cool! Good music is good music – it doesn’t matter what it’s like.
How easy or difficult was it to be on a tour which was pretty much 90 percent guys.
That’s a good question! I grew up with three boys being my brothers and I’m used to being around guys all the time. Of course, it’s nice to be around girls every once in a while. You kind of like miss it a little bit – like “I wish I could go and do my nails with someone” or something – you know, little things. But it’s fine – whatever, there’s worse problems to have in the world. Even our fans – we have a lot of girl fans – even guy fans – it’s kind of equal, which is cool. Even the girls that I meet every night – I end up in these conversations with them that I would talk to my best friends about. Like “Oh, you’re dressed so cute, where did you get that?” And we end up becoming friends – and it’s kind of cool for both sides. I get out my girlie side with these girl fans and then they feel more special because we had a real conversation – not just “Hey, I’ll sign this, let’s take a picture.” I also try to go out of my way to do that too, because I know it’s a fun moment for everyone. Even if I don’t remember that specific time meeting them, they might remember it forever. So it’s a cool way that it works and it works for me. I’m obviously used to being with guys, but it is nice every once in a while – I mean, I’m touring with Jenna from Tonight Alive. It is fun, but I’m used to it, and I accepted the fact that there’s not a million girls in this industry.
Is there any story or concept behind the CD title Talking Dreams?
We picked that title – obviously it’s one of the songs on the record. That was the last song we wrote for the record. That song was really naturally for us – for some reason – I mean, all these songs were natural for us style wise – some songs took longer than others. This one we wrote in maybe an hour or two. For some reason it just came so naturally. Graham played the right drum part the first time – like the perfect thing and he played it great and recorded it in one take too for the real record! And Noah picked the right bass part – it was really natural for us and it felt really good as a band. It was a good last song to have. And also, it’s our perspective on life right now, and I think it’s a good thing for a band to be honest with how they feel about life for what they’re writing about in general. It doesn’t have to be dark all of the time. You hear people say like, “Oh, it’s so honest because it’s so depressing.” I mean, yeah, there’s that, but there’s also the other side of being excited about life. And if you are, then write about it – I mean, you don’t have to make it more dramatic than it is honestly. But that’s what this record is – we’re excited for life and we’re happy about it and thankful for where we’re at – and I think you can see it in our songs and you can really see our perspective right now.
What’s up next for Echosmith in the New Year?
Lots of touring. We haven’t announced anything yet for next year, but we have a lot of really fun things coming up, so stay tuned. We’re really excited for next year! And I’m excited to promote this album even more…
(Interview by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)
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