Sunday, December 6, 2009

Hotspur Feature on Forthesound.com



Unsigned Feature: Hotspur

They gave it away for free. And for that, 15,000 people now have music collections rich in Hotspur.
And Hotspur is rich in – Taco Bell bucks? Yes, along with 99 other national touring bands Hotspur won the coveted ‘Feed The Beat’ contest which will provide them not only with marketing support money, but also $500 worth of ‘fourth meals’. As most touring bands will tell you, that is exactly what you ask Santa for in your Christmas stockings.
The guys are big supporters of the environment via Green Means Go, a coalition of musicians and bands who have committed to using green practices when possible and promoting eco-awareness among their audience. Participating bands use their public presence to help solve the problem of global warming and to create a connection between the music community and the conservation community. www.hotspurmusic.com/green.
For the Sound talked with Hotspur about their name, the Mtv.U ‘Chandelier’ video, and playing with Metro Station.
Hotspur (n.) – an impetuous or reckless person; a hothead. Does this describe the band or does the band name have a different origin?

The name actually comes from a character in Shakespeare’s Henry IV – but the character is based on Henry “Hotspur” Percy, a charismatic rebel renowned for his hot temper and recklessness on the battlefield – thus the dictionary definition. We sort of see him as the rockstar of his day, and the word carried a certain excitement and energy that seemed to fit.

15,000 downloads in one day. That’s a really impressive number. How did you promote this and where is the download available?

Yeah we made our whole catalog (2 Full-length albums, 1 Acoustic album, 2 holiday songs and our music video) available for free on halloween. We were really glad that people took advantage of it–on the one hand of course we want to make money off of our music, but we’re still at the point where we want our music to reach as many new listeners as possible. And hopefully the people that downloaded stuff for free will come out and see us on tour and get the full Hotspur experience! Although the full-catalog download was only available for one day, there are still a bunch of freebies available at www.hotspurmusic.com/free.
You guys won MtvU’s The Freshman in October for the video, “Chandelier”. What was this experience like and how do you think it will impact the future of the band?
Winning mtvU’s “The Freshmen” definitely took Hotspur to the next level. For one, there was a huge outpouring of support from our fans and friends to win the contest, and the response to the video from new fans has been awesome.
While we’re on the subject of the “Chandelier” video, did you guys film and produce it yourselves or did you have some help?
The video for “Chandelier” was shot by Brad Minsley, who did an amazing job. It’s the first music video he ever shot, and it was definitely a collaborative effort. We shot the whole video at our drummer Scott’s grandma’s house–which is a gigantic sprawling 70’s mansion, and the band did most of the writing and editing of the video.
Hotspur put on a big show at Six Flags in Chicago with Metro Station. What was it like to have 4000 people watching you perform and did you get ride any of the coasters?
Playing at Six Flags was an amazing experience for us. The fans were out of control! We tried to do a meet ‘n greet with the fans after our set, and security had to shut down our signing line and escort us backstage because we were causing a “mob scene.” Unfortunately that meant we weren’t able to ride any rides either, but a few of us snuck on to some rides with fans!
WTF? I see you guys played with Jimmy Buffet. How cool was that?
Playing at Nissan Pavilion was pretty crazy–i’ve been to tons of shows there so it was really neat to be on the other side of the stage. The Jimmy Buffet crowd was not exactly our usual demographic, but that tour is basically one big party so everyone was pretty into it.
You played several stops on the Vans Warped Tour, does anyone in the band participate in any extreme sports? If so, Which?
Scott does some snowboarding still and worked at a skate park for a few years, and Evan and Coop used to skate too, but our attraction to Warped is definitely rooted more in music than extreme sports. We are into other extreme things, like extreme eating, extreme driving, extreme partying, etc!
Your second CD, “You Should Know Better By Now”, was released in June and has received some great reviews. Was recording your sophomore effort any different than recording your debut album “Beta”?
Writing and recording the new album was VERY different than making “Beta” On our first album we were still experimenting and figuring out our sound and we produced half of the songs ourselves. For this album we brought in producer Bryan Russell (Straylight Run, Envy On The Coast, Coldplay), who did an amazing job sculpting the sound of the record. It took us almost two years to write the album–and in those two years the band went through a lot–relationships, touring, even just growing up, and all those experiences are captured on the record. I think there’s more depth to this record, both musically and lyrically.
What does the future hold for Hotspur?
What does the future hold for Hotspur? Touring. As I mentioned before we’re at the point in our band where our main goal is to get our music out to as many people as possible–and the best way to do that is to hit the road! Right now we’re on the road with a band called Sequoyah Prep School, then in December we’re touring with a new band on RCA called 2AM Club. You can find all the dates for those two tours on our myspace. We’re also looking to shoot another video soon, and are excited to start working on new music!

Lastly, are there any shameless plugs that you would like to promote?

Any shameless plugs to promote? Go watch our video on mtvU, and tell them you want to see more Hotspur! Also we just entered into a contest with Rockstar Games/PSP for a new game made by Timbaland called “Beaterator.” We were asked to make a remix of one of our songs using the game, and it’s up on their site at beaterator.ign.com – go listen!
FYI: The guys will be kicking off the New Year at Big Night Baltimore with the ever popular Jimmie’s Chicken Shack. The event sells out every year, so if you want to try to sneak New Years kisses with Hotspur: www.bignightbaltimore.com/tickets.php
~Alexis Paige~
Original article: HERE

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