We spoke to Small Talk. a trio from San Diego! Their members consist of;
- Nestle Noah Frederick – Vocals
- Vic Andrade – Guitar
- Elliot Cole – Drums
1. Hey guys, thanks for chatting! So Hawthorne has been out just over a month now, how has the reception been? I see it has smashed all your previous tracks on Spotify by streams! That must feel amazing.
Vic: The reception has been amazing! It definitely has the most streams and it feels great! I also hope the attention the song has received does bring people to our older songs as well because I’m proud of all the music we’ve put out.
Ness: It’s been an actual crazy feeling seeing that we have had that many streams on the song. When we first started the band I remember we had 12 monthly listeners and I was just super excited because I didn’t even know that many people in real life! It’s really heart warming to feel so much love and support and I’ll never take that for granted.
Elliot: It’s awesome! I can’t believe how many streams we’ve gotten in such a short time span and I’m so happy that people like it enough to keep listening.
2. What was it like working with the legend himself, Jaime Preciado?
Vic: We’ve worked with Jaime before and he’s a really cool guy. He’s helped us a lot with making sure our songs sound as good as possible once they hit streaming platforms!
Elliot: It was cool to work with someone who’s band I grew up listening to! I’m super happy with how everything he mastered for us turned out!
3. What was the writing and recording process like for Hawthorne? You guys look like you have so much fun and click so easy. Does this make the whole process so much easier?
Vic: Hawthorne started off as a guitar instrumental that I recorded on a voice memo. I sent it over to ness and he was able to put lyrics and a melody together pretty quickly. I think we knew immediately that this was a special song and that it did represent the direction we wanted to go in. Recording it was different since we were living in this current pandemic. So we weren’t able to be together while recording it. I’m happy the song came out the way it did but I wouldn’t want to record that way again. I enjoy being able to be with my band mates during that process. In regards to us clicking, it definitely makes everything easier when you’re comfortable with the people around you! I know I can rely on them to let me know if something sounds off or not!
Ness: It was really weird to record a song during COVID. We all had to go in individually and do our part alone so that in itself was very intimidating, but we got it done, we all nailed it separately and it just came out so solid. This is by far my most favourite song we have ever done and it’s very memorable to have recorded it with face masks and during this weird time. I feel safe with my band and I think that translates to the music.
4. What inspired the lyrics to Hawthorne?
Ness: For me, this song is about losing myself with PTSD. I feel like a lot of people don’t understand it and expect me to always be this happy person and treat me differently whenever I have depressive episodes or attacks. “I miss the ghost of who you used to be”, I feel like people miss the “old me” at times. By that, I mean the old me with no visible trauma. It’s just an overall sad song but mental health is very important and even if you’re sad every second of the day you are valid.
5. You’re clearly very integrated with your fans, which the fanbase has grown a lot since the release! What’s it like not being able to play a show to support the release?
Vic: I love our fans! And I’m so happy to see that growth with people finding us! We are very aware that nothing would be possible without them so we’re thankful all the time. Not being able to play shows sucks. Like I miss being able to be in rooms playing music for people and just having fun. I can’t wait for live music to return. Until then we’ll continue finding new ways to interact with our fans and just focus on even more new tunes to share too!
Ness: I love interacting with fans and just joking around with people. It’s so hard to not play shows, we miss it so much. We played shows often and after we’d always go get Mexican food with bands and friends and it was always such a blast. Every person who takes the time to listen to our music has a place in my heart. When I say it means the world, I’m not exaggerating that.
6. We’ve seen many posts about more music to come, do we have a date of a new music release?
Vic: Oh yes! Right now fall 2020 is the release window. The specific date will come soon. But I promise what we’re releasing is very special and we did this entirely for the people who support us (our fans, friends, family)!
Ness: All I can say is, get your pumpkins ready and all fall vibes. Something new and unique is coming, something we have never done before.
7. What was it like recording the video to accompany the track?
Vic: It was so fun! It was our first time filming an official music video so there were definitely nerves involved. But luckily we did this with our good friend Chris from another local SD band called Lost Dakota(& if only.), so he was able to really make the environment comfortable. I’m happy with the end result and it just makes me so excited to film future music videos. We learned a lot from this first one and we’ll just continue to get better and more comfortable in front of a camera.
Ness: We have never done a music video before so honestly I was scared. But, we recorded with Chris and he made it so fun and easy. We rented a house for the day and filmed it there. Fun fact, this video was going to be outside but someone pulled a knife out on us and we got scared. I didn’t think I would ever even walk outside again. So we rented a house and did it all in a day. It was super comfortable and surreal to hear our song playing and doing the video for it. It was fun to have a storyline go with the video and do something we wanted to do. I’m ready for the next one! Hopefully no one pulls out a knife though haha!
Elliot: It was my first time ever doing a music video for something so it was a super cool new experience! I’ve always wanted to put out a music video with a band and I’m really glad I finally can check that off my list of things to do. We filmed with our friend Chris and he did such an amazing job and was just overall so great to work with.
8. What do you think of the whole ‘Don’t wear merch of the headlining band to their show’ saying?
Vic: I used to believe it. I started off wearing shirts of the bands to their shows but once everyone kept saying that I got in my own head for a bit. But luckily that only lasted for a couple years. Because I think you should wear whatever you want and feel comfortable with. If it’s the headlining band then that’s cool! It just shows how big of a fan you are of that band!
Ness: I oppose this so hard. I geek out over my own band all the time. Be proud of your music, wear your merch, and be genuine. We have some new merch coming out and you’ll definitely catch me wearing it all the time because I want to support the artists who made it and my band mates. Consider it a proud dad moment lol.
Elliot: Nah I think that if you wanna show your support when you go and see a band live that’s totally cool! I know it’s awesome to see people wearing our shirts at our shows so I don’t see why you shouldn’t do that other than people being judgmental for no reason.
9. What was the original blueprint for small talk. and how has it changed due to this awful 2020?
Vic: Just to continue playing shows, go on tour, and release more music. We were growing and gaining a lot of momentum and then the cancelations started coming. We’ve still continued on the releasing music front but definitely playing shows and going on tour changed due to the year. As much as I miss that side of things, I just want this pandemic to get under control and for safety measures to stay in place. The safety of everyone is the main priority. Wear your mask everyone and practice social distancing! Live music will come back eventually and we’ll be ready to hit the ground running when that time comes!
Ness: We were actually going to go on a west coast tour in Summer 2020 and we were going to begin recording a full length record. We are very sad by all the lives tragically lost by this disease, but we all can work together to make this world a better place. As bad as I want to tour, I want to make sure the world is in a better place politically, environmentally, and just safe for us. When that time comes, we are never stopping.
10. Leave a message for the readers!
Vic: Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. Thanks Mike and everyone at punk, rocks! for giving us this platform. And just stay tuned for everything we have coming up especially this fall! Follow us on all our social media accounts to be in the loop! We love you all! Take care and stay safe/healthy! Oh and lastly – black lives matter, defund the police, and remember to vote!
Ness: Thanks so much for listening to our song and just for checking us out. I’m sending the biggest virtual hug right now to all of you. Please be kind to yourself and others and wear a mask. If you can’t do it for yourself, do it for someone in your life that you love. We can make this world a better place if we work together and treat others with kindness. Keep your eyes peeled for small talk., FALL 2020.
Elliot: Everyone stay safe! (Don’t be an idiot and make sure to wear a mask) Thanks for the continued support, we can’t wait to show everyone what we’ve got in store. As Vic said, BLM, defund the police.