Jared: I'm great. I'm in El Paso. Well just outside El Paso at a big residential studio. It's actually where we did our first record Burn In The Spotlight too, so it's kinda cool to come back and do some songwriting and stuff like that.
MPR: Nice, does that mean you guys are working on new Surrender The Fall material?
Jared: Well I'm out here doing some writing for some other artists and doing some writing for Surrender The Fall as well. The rest of the guys are in Memphis. We head out on tour this weekend so were just trying to multitask as much as possible. Once we get done with this tour I think I we're gonna put out record number two, make some more music.
MPR: I hate to make you answer this for probably the thousandth time, but can you tell me a little bit about the meaning behind the name Surrender The Fall?
Jared: I'd like to say that in the beginning it was benevolent, you know it didn't have anything behind it at first. It kind of ended up having meaning for us though. Basically Surrender The Fall means giving up the option to fail. And you may think that if you don't fail in life, if there's no failure option, then the only thing left to do is succeed. Success isn't measured by the things you achieve but, you know, how dilligently you work to succeed at something. Not quitting, not giving up. That's what it means.
MPR: What do you think you'd be doing right now if you had quit, if you weren't in a band?
Jared: Oh god that's a hard question. I'd probably still be doing something in music. Writing songs with other artists, maybe production, I've done a little bit of that. Basically music's been my whole life since I can remember. I've had every odd end job you could possibly think of from retail stores to construction, to everything else, and music's always been a constant for me. So I'd probably be staying with music somehow.
MPR: It's been almost a year since your first label released album Burn In the Spotlight came out. What has the experience been like being signed to a label after years of doing things independently?
Jared: Well there's obviously a little more money involved. Not necessarily for us, but in the things that we're trying to do. When you have a label backing you there's help that you don't really get when you're broke and starving and poor, you know, doing it DIY. They've done a lot for us as far as helping us get a real product with the record Burn In The Spotlight.
We've done music videos, we get tour support from the label in order to advertise our singles and stuff like that, so it's definitely helped with that. And they have a team built in that put you online. There's so much work involved with taking a band and getting them out to as many people as possible. You have the capability when you're independent for sure cause of the Internet, but I think with the label it's put us on sort of a different playing field to do the things that we've always wanted to do. To go on tour for 9 weeks at a time or something like that. So it's definitely changed in that way.
Other than that things really haven't changed. We still give 110% every show, we still get off stage and hang out with the fans, run our social media sites. Things like that will never change. We love the connection with the people that care about this band. That won't change, we'll always be behind a computer somewhere answering messages or emails or anything like that. The label just allows us to do more than we could with the DIY attitude.
MPR: That's one thing that really caught my attention with you guys initially. At your shows and online I see so much interaction with fans. It's really great to see that there are still bands like that.
Jared: I totally agree. People that don't spend the face time with people that spend their money to come see them should not even be allowed to be on stage in my opinion. You know there's some days where you feel sick. I think one time on tour I got really sick and I had to play a show and leave immediately after. Because A, I felt miserable, and B, I didn't wanna get anybody else sick. I didn't know what was going on but my throat was raw and I was sweating when I wasn't even on stage, so that was different. But if you don't ever talk to people, yeah. It's what we love to do. It's not really a job for us. We get off stage and cool off for 10 minutes cause were sweating like crazy but then we go back in and it's party time with everybody.
MPR: Whenever the song "Bleed" from the album plays on my iPod when I'm walking to work I just can't help but rock out and look like an idiot dancing down the street. What songs have you been listening to lately that get you amped up?
Jared: Oh man I like this question. i have been listening to an album called House of Gold and Bones by a band called Stone Sour. I love that record, it's two parts and it's incredible. We got a chance to play with them at 98 Rock Fest in Tampa and Charleston, and they're hands down baddest band ever, those guys kill it every night. I've been listening to a lot of that, "Gone Sovereign," "Absolute Zero," those are the singles off of that but the whole record's incredible.
What else? Eye Empire, they're amazing, we toured with those guys too. Nonpoint's new record is incredible. They just went through a member change up and added a new member, and I think a lot of people were kind of speculating if it was gonna be the Nonpoint that they knew and loved. They really stepped it up ten fold. We're about to go back out on the road with them so we're really stoked about that.
Man I can name some old stuff like Elvis, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Prince too. I think that gets into the what are your influences question. Just anything that's real, not fabricated. That's what we love.
MPR: Are there any guilty pleasure songs on your iPod that people wouldn't expect you to listen to?
Jared: That's a good question too, I haven't been asked that one yet. Let me think. There's a really cool cover, this is the first one that popped into my head. My guitar player Anthony showed it to me not too long ago. There's a band called Issues that do a metal cover of a Justin Bieber song. It's pretty freaking cool, I'm not gonna lie. I've gotta say I'm not the biggest Justin Bieber fan out there, I mean he's successful at what he does, but that cover is pretty cool.
MPR: I'll have to check that out, sounds interesting.
Jared: Yeah it's cool, and there's a mash up of Slipknot and Justin Bieber too that's actually pretty cool. I think it's "Psychosocial" and "Baby."
MPR: You're about to hit the road for some more intimate club shows with Nonpoint, but your summer schedule has a few festival dates too. What's your favorite thing about each type of show?
Jared: The venue shows to me are really cool cause it's intimate, the barricade isn't super far from the stage so people are reachable. That's what I love about those shows, the connection with the crowd. Being in somebody's face. A lot of times for us, and for me especially, i'll be on stage and looking out making eye contact with everybody, and i'll come across someone that knows every word to the song that I'm singing. And that's where I get my energy from. It's hard sometimes to play a live show when no one's into it. But it's that one person that's belting out the words and probably singing it better than you are that you connect with, you lock in and once your eyes meet their eyes it's on.
The outdoor fests I love as well, you get to see what youre really made of. This is the first year that we've done a lot of those, we just did Rockapalooza, Rock Fest, Dysfunctional Family BBQ in New York, things like that. But as far as outdoor, it's the coming together of everybody that's cool cause you get there early, you get your drink on, do your thing or whatever. But you're there for all the bands. Everybody is hanging out watching all the bands. It's more family oriented, like everyone's family and friends, than it is at a venue where you can stand at the back like your too cool for school. Which is fine but it doesn't normally happen that way at a festival. You can mosh and crowd surf and people can smoke their cigarettes outside so they're not freaking out and going outside every five minutes to go have a smoke.
So there are pluses to both. Anything live, we love to do. We'll play in your backyard, well play in your bathroom. It doesn't matter.
MPR: I think the bathroom would be a little weird.
Jared: Why not?
MPR: Alright, I'm booking you guys to play my bathroom. I'm gonna hold you to that.
Jared: Alright let's go! We played a really small place a while ago and we didn't know where to go. I was like, i'll stand in the doorway of the bathroom if I have to and do the show if you want, I don't care. A lot of bands would kinda get upside down about it and be like 'Oh, we gotta be on stage and we gotta have this and this and this,' but we're not Ike that at all. If you could fit a drum kit in a tree my drummer would play up there.
MPR: I'd love to see that.
Jared: So would I.
MPR: Do you guys ever get nervous, seeing as you're stil a bit newer to the bigger festival shows?
Jared: You know I've been asked that a few times. I don't think it's nerves. It's more like adrenaline. We feed off of the stuff, we're all adrenaline junkies. Anything that gives us a rush and gets our heart racing is a positive for us. We've been playing these songs for a long time, especially with the material were playing now. If we can't play it then we shouldn't be on stage. That part is fine.
Sometimes if it's a big show and a technical thing happens, that makes me a bit nervous, but everyone's already having a good time. If the only thing they're disappointed about is the fact that they've gotta wait two minutes before we can keep going, it's fine. It might happen one day if we play some kinda Motley Crue crowd in front of 50,000 people. I'll probably be a little nervous with that.
MPR: I don't wanna take up too much of your time so I just have to ask you one more thing: If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
Jared: I'd like to teleport. It's probably a cliche, but I'd like to be able to snap my fingers and say California and go there. Or be in two places at once. I'm sure that's two different superpowers. But yeah actually let me switch that. I mean I wanna be in Vegas and Memphis at the same time. I gotta write a song about that now, thank you.
MPR: Next single, Vegas and Memphis at the same time?
Jared: I'd have to make headlines in both cities though, do something crazy In each city. Then headlines will say this is impossible it's an impostor.
MPR: I'll be looking out for that in the news.
Jared: You're gonna be like 'I knew it, I knew he was gonna do it.'