An Interview With The Rock Radio Hitmakers, Flyleaf!
Posted On 07 Aug 2014
Tag: '68, #Rock, #setmeonfire, again, All Around Me, Arc Waves, Between The Stars, Deftones, Evanescance, Flyleaf, Fully Alive, House of Blues, I'm So Sick, James Culpepper, Jared Hartmann, Korn\, Kristen May, Loud & Proud Records, Memento Mori, Missing, New Horizons, P.O.D., Passion Pit, Pat Seals, Phantogram, Sameer Bhattacharya, Set Me On Fire, Something Better, Sonny Sandoval, Stone Sour, Thom Yorke, Who We Are
The rock band, Flyleaf has consistently dominated the Active, Alternative and Mainstream Rock radio charts throughout their career. They released their self-titled debut album in 2005 which was RIAA-certified Platinum and spawned the singles “I’m So Sick,” “Fully Alive,” and the smash “All Around Me,” which sold over one million digital downloads, was a Top 20 hit at CHR/Top 40 radio and won the BMI Pop Award.
Flyleaf then went on to release Memento Mori in 2009, which debuted at #8 on the Billboard Album charts, featuring the singles “Again” and “Missing.” Their third album, New Horizons, was released in late 2012.
After months of touring the world with the new line-up addition of Kristen May on vocals, the band released a new EP, Who We Are, in 2013 which featured the song “Something Better” with P.O.D.’s Sonny Sandoval on guest vocals.
Their newest album, Between The Stars, is their debut for Loud & Proud Records and it will be released on September 16th. The lead single currently out now from the album is “Set Me On Fire”.
Flyleaf band members include:
Sameer Bhattacharya – Guitar
James Culpepper – Drums
Jared Hartmann – Guitar
Kristen May – Vocals
Pat Seals – Bass
Check out this interview I did with Sameer a few weeks ago:
How did you all meet one another and how did you decide to start a band?
The boys met each other in Central Texas where we were all in the bands around town. All of our previous bands had ended or were ending, but we knew we wanted to write inspiring music. We were blessed that we and Kristen found each other in just the right time and share that same vision.
How did your band’s name come about?
Flyleaf had another name before but was forced to change it for legal reasons. We literally pulled the name Flyleaf out of a hat, and since then, that name has had great significance to each of us.
How have you grown as a band since you started?
We grew out of adolescence into adulthood in Flyleaf. As many ups and downs, trials, failures and victories that come from years 17 to 30 have been experienced.
How was the transition when you changed lead singers? How has the group dynamics changed since Kristen May was brought on board?
The transition of singers felt seamless. We clicked right away. There were many changes during that time that affected Flyleaf’s dynamic. Beautiful things like babies being born and marriages. Kristen has a carefree spirit and embraces life to the fullest. She stepped right in and the rest is history.
More times than not, influences tend to bleed through. What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making? What are some new rock bands that you guys are liking right now?
I’ve been listening to Phantogram, Passion Pit and ’68. There is a new band call Arc Waves from Brooklyn that I really dig.
What’s been a favorite venue to perform at and why?
I love the House Of Blues because they are reliably great sounding rooms where everyone has a good seat. It’s big enough to get everyone in and small enough for everyone to feel engaged. But I also love festivals because it’s a toss up whether or not anything is gonna work and you get to play in front of an audience who might not have heard of you or thought to see you live. We are a band you wanna see live!
Tell me about the #Setmeonfire campaign you have going on your Facebook page now? The response has been massive!
Flyleaf has very creative and expressive fans. We love to engage with them and remind them that they are a part of the Flyleaf Family. We wouldn’t exist if it they didn’t exist. We’re in this together.
What would you say the band has already accomplished and what do you have your eyes set on next?
From the inception of Flyleaf, our goal has been to write music that shares a message of hope and love and to inspire people to love each other and live life to the fullest. We all have gone through and are going through tough things that we can’t always explain, but there is always hope. There is always a silver lining. We’ve seen the tip of the iceberg but have a long way to go.
Thus far, what’s a favorite memory or something funny that’s taken place with the band (in-studio, onstage, or elsewhere)?
My favorite Flyleaf memory was in Australia on tour with Deftones. It was on the last day in Australia, on our way to the airport. We all stripped down to our underwear and jumped off a pier into a crystal clear ocean. It was incredible!
What’s been the craziest fan interaction that you guys have had?
If you could work with any artist, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Thom Yorke, because Thom Yorke.
What do you guys like to do for fun when you aren’t performing or writing new material?
Reading books that broaden my perspective, cooking really delicious food, and hiking in beautiful places.
Is there anything in particular that you’d like people to take away from listening to your upcoming/new fourth album, Between The Stars?
Listen to Between the Stars with an open heart and mind. Don’t be afraid to read between the lines. We hope that it inspires you and helps you to know that hope and love are real.