Echosmith On 'Cool Kids' Success, Pressure, Next Album [Interview]
Unless you have lived under a rock over the past two years, you have probably Echosmith's hit single "Cool Kids." The four-piece family band of Sydney, Graham, Noah and Jamie Sierota have been playing together since they were very young. However it was not until they released their debut album Talking Dreams that the industry started to notice these bright-eyed kids from Chino, California and their playful, cheery indie-pop sound that doesn't come off as cheesy, but still has a mainstream and a radio-friendly appeal.
Fast-forward to the end of 2015, several supporting and headlining tours later, including a lengthy one with Twenty One Pilots in the books only a few days ago, the group has grown into seasoned touring veterans. Heading into the winter, things will finally wind down and the four of them will start to write music for their second album, which they expect will be released next year.
We had a chance to catch up with Echosmith as part of an eight hour batch of interviews (bless their souls) to promote safe driving with State Farm. We chatted about what types of adjustments they had to make as a group trying to deal with success, early music, pressure to make that next big hit and much more.
MT: How did you get involved in this program? Is it personal?
SS: Well it is something personal for us considering we are all technically teen drivers. It's something that when State Farm reached out to partner with us on Celebrate My Drive it was a no brainer. Of course we're going to do it, it's something that involved our lives and also our fans no matter how old or young they are. It's just something that's important, our whole goal with music is to make a difference. This is just another step to doing that.
MT: When you all go home who's the person that drives?
NS: Graham doesn't have his license yet but other than that I think we all stay in our separate cars and drive off on our own. We are together a lot when we are traveling but when we get home we kind of just disburse.
MT: If you all had to be in the same car, who would take the wheel?
NS: Jamie being the oldest, he probably would. He started first.
MT: You guys started playing together several years, what were some of those earlier shows and songs like?
SS: So we started 9 years ago. Our songs back then were definitely not, I mean we never wrote about hanging out at the mall or anything. I wouldn't say they were great songs but they were good for our age. I mean a nine year old singing something they wrote, it wasn't too bad. We went through our phases. Super poppy, or real rock music. We tried just about everything and eventually found our sound when we got older and I'm happy with where we landed.
MT: Are any of those songs still around?
SS: Oh no. I don't think so. Once in while someone will dig up something but none of them will be revisited for any future albums.
MT: Success came rather quickly after "Cool Kids." What were some of the adjustments you had to make?
NS: I think one of the big ones was just getting used to traveling and touring. Before it took off we were already traveling and touring for about a year before that. It was exciting and more pressure because there was more things to do. There was a lot of things we had to learn to do. We had to learn to play for different types of crowds and learn different songs.
MT: You been on the road for two years how has that impacted what you are going to do going forward with songwriting or your live show?
NS: I think it will impact us in a lot of ways. We've learned a lot, seen the world. I think we will keep writing and see where it goes. In more aspects it will be more communal and we will try to find ways to write songs that connect our message to people. Connect who we are. I think that will be a big part of that. We get to see so many great acts and see how they play, how they connect. It is exciting. We are out taking notes and being prepared for our next album cycle.
MT: Do you feel pressured to make another big hit?
SS: There definitely is a bit of, I don't know if I'd call it pressure, but curiosity as to what the next song is going to be and if there will be another song that's as big as "Cool Kids", or bigger, or smaller. I think naturally there is that wonder but we are just excited to make new music and we are just confident in who we are.
MT: Who got in the most trouble growing up?
NS: Probably our oldest brother Jamie because everything would get blamed on him.
MT: Did you guys do that on purpose?
NS: We are the younger ones we are supposed to do that.
MT: Any good stories?
NS: When you are little the oldest kids always get blamed for things. When you are little and you break things the oldest one always gets blamed. It's what happens, its family. We're a family.
MT: Who has the best personal social media accounts?
SS: I'd say Graham.
MT: What's something people might not know about each one of you?
SS: We love food. I think it's funny that we all kind of get crazy if somebody chews with their mouth open. It's all of our pet peeves. It's also a habit we all have.
MT: What do you have coming up?
NS: Right now we finishing up this tour and then we are going to start writing for our next record. Recording that and releasing it at some point next year. Right now we are just focused on spreading the message of Celebrate My Drive with State Farm.
MT: Do you want to work with some people on that?
NS: Possibly we've talked about it. I think it would be exciting.