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I met the guys in The Head just a little over a year ago when my good friend, Patrick Keenan of The Winter Sounds sent them my way. Since then it’s been my pleasure to get to know the trio which includes twin brothers Jack and Mike Shaw and guitarist Jacob Morrell. They’ve been steadily gigging all over the SouthEast and just released their new music video, “Tony” which is embedded below. Tonight we’ll see them return to Greenville again with our good friends Italo and the Passions. The show is in the bar area of The Handlebar and starts at 8PM, admission is $5.
Wes Gilliam: Ok we’ll go ahead and get the age stuff out of the way first! You guys have all been playing together since high-school and are all still relatively young as far as being out on the road etc. Was there ever an intimidation factor when you first started or even now?
Jack Shaw: There has never really been any intimidation. Since day one, we have just been so excited and focused on making music together that we tend to overlook anything that might intimidate us.
WG: Just looking on your webpage I see some press from some very reputable sources as Spin Magazine, if you had to pick one press blurb or compliment someone’s given you as a personal favorite, what would it be?
JS: That’s a hard one, especially since we appreciate and are thrilled to receive any press. If we had to pick a favorite, however, it would probably be a feature Jeff Clark (Stomp and Stammer Magazine) wrote on us back in 2011. He has a really particular taste in music, so we were beyond excited when he wrote about us.
WG: I know you guys definitely have a strong Beatles influence, but you all also cite REM as a big personal influence as well as acts like Big Star and Pavement. How did you guys get turned onto some of this stuff so early? This isn’t exactly top your current top 40 stuff by any stretch of the imagination.
JS: Our parents turned us on to all those bands when we were younger. My dad would always play REM, the Stone Roses, Big Star, and many others through the car’s radio whenever we went on road trips. All that music has stuck with us ever since.
WG: You just released your new video for “Tony” yesterday (this will go out tomorrow haha), I’m just curious how the director pitched you, since it’s a pretty straight ahead performance video. Was he like “OK” we’re gonna film a live video and then throw crazy color effects on it? Or was it added in post? I just like hearing the creative process.
JS: Greg Cuson (the director) knew we all wanted the video to focus solely on the music, so that’s why he filmed us performing the song live. We also wanted the video to be simple, yet evocative– so that’s why Greg threw in the color effects during the editing process. We had a blast working with Greg. He also did the video for our song “Stockwood” last year.
WG: Another thing I’ve noticed about the band is you’ve been giving away your CD’s and T-shirts for free and just asking donations. What inspired that? Would you encourage other acts to try this model?
JS:Radiohead’s “give what you will” campaign for their In Rainbows album in 2008 definitely inspired us. We also played with this awesome band in Chicago last year called The Banana Convention that gave all their merch away for free, giving people the option to add donations. We love nothing more than meeting new fans, so we decided that the best way to reach new fans is to make our music and other merch readily available to them.
WG: You’ve told me you’re trying to stick with playing Greenville about once a month for the forseeable future, which is a pretty strong work ethic for someone in another state. What inspired this?
JS: Aside from Greenville being one of our favorite places to play, we realized that we need to continue hitting the same cities over and over again if we want to maintain and expand our support system beyond Atlanta. We always meet great people and great bands when we’re on the road, so we don’t mind the road trips at all. They’re fun.
WG: Ok let’s go out on a fun question: In light of the recent “zombie” attacks all over the news, what would be in The Head’s zombie survival kit and why?
JS: Lube and a box of Cheerios. No explanation needed.
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