These Kids Wear Crowns are a Canadian pop / power pop band from BC who made it big REALLY fast! After the band got together in 2009, they were discovered on MuchMusic's "disBand" and in 2010 were signed to Capitol Records / EMI. This year, in March 2011, they put out their first full-lenght album, Jumpstart. When asked about the song, "Jumpstart", and why they chose to make it an uplifting song even though it's about feeling down, they told us, "If you dwell on the negatives in life, you won’t ever change them. We think it’s important to keep the best thoughts in your head. Don’t let your mind run wild. Not saying you should hide from your emotions - if you’re angry be angry and if you’re sad be sad - but there are times where we can make something that seems terrible something that we either learn from or actually turn around and turn into something uplifting." Read our interview to learn more about this cool band and what message they hope their music sends to fans that might be going through a hard time.
First of all, can you explain to our mindyourmind readers what the These Kids Wear Crowns hand signal is all about? How did it start, and who came up with it?
It’s a crown with a heart. We all have one. It’s about living life like you love it. It’s about partying responsibly. It’s about being positive. Positivity breeds positivity. We came up with the symbol one day on stage while sound checking. That’s actually where a lot of decisions or ideas are made or created. On stage, while we sound check.
What made you guys want to be in a band? Which musicians or bands inspired you to have a career in music?
We all come from different paths. But we all have a love for music and entertaining people. Hopefully we are able to do that. We grew up listening to The Used, Taking Back Sunday, Brand New, Green Day, Jay Z, Kanye West, MXPX, Dogwood, Thrice, Blink 182, Rufus Wainwright, Fall Out Boy, Underoath, NAUTICAL, BwB, The Doors, and on and on. There are six of us so we have a wide variety of what we play when we are travelling. Some influence our sound and some inspired us to pick up an instrument and learn how to play it or to just become interested in the beautiful thing music is.
A lot of bands tend to struggle during their journey towards making it big, how were you guys able to stay motivated and strong as a band?
How ARE we able to! We are enjoying every tiny bit of success we might have to the fullest. It’s a fast industry. Especially today – but we really have nothing to compare to. We had our first show in Sept 2009, were signed to EMI in August of 2010 and had our first album – Jumpstart – released in March of this year (2011). We would have loved to have been in a band back in the 50’s when the competition wasn’t so strong and people were just discovering rock and roll. And we mean friendly competition, of course. We think it’s a great thing for music – especially in Canada. We’ve travelled back and forth across this country over ten times now. Today there are so many bands in so many towns it’s hard to stay defined and on people's mind. We were lucky enough to have the opportunity to be on disBAND and MuchMusic was really supportive after the show so that helped us with promoting our band nationwide. The hard part is trying to maintain that progress or that hype. Like we said, it’s a fast industry. We hate to sound cliché, but you don’t want to be left behind.
A musician’s life can be pretty hectic and stressful, how do you all find balance in your lives?
We keep each other grounded. We are really good friends, which is lucky. It’s rare to find a group of people in any kind of situation in life that get along. Especially when you have to live with each other for 200 or more days out of the year. Most times in a 15 passenger van. We enjoy it though. Everyone has their ups and downs but we wouldn’t be continuing if we didn’t enjoy it as much as we do. We were able to surround ourselves with a great team who is super supportive and ambitious and that keeps us focused and driven.
Do any of you get nervous on stage? Any techniques you do to make you feel pumped up to perform live?
We get anxious. We do a cheer before we go out on stage. We grew up playing and loving sports, and still to this day treat every show like its game day. We get our game faces on. It’s great to play in an arena because the green room is a hockey dressing room, so it brings back memories. Some of glorious championships, others of pitiful defeat. But memories none the less.
You guys have been touring a lot lately due to your rising popularity, how do you guys manage to stay humble?
We aren’t trying to put on an act for anyone or impress anyone with something we really aren’t. We are who we are. We respect any attention anyone gives us and want to make sure that people feel that. We are thankful that people want to spend time with us, and we want to party with them.
Some artists find simple things, and others find dark moments that inspire them to write music. What inspires you to write your songs?
Life. Not even necessarily ours. Sometimes it’s relationships or people we see around us that spark the idea for a song. Every bit of what we write about comes from something we’ve seen or created from something subconscious. We try to keep a positive message because that’s how we feel when we are around one another. We just want to have fun. And we hope our music inspires that in the people who enjoy it.
In your song “Jumpstart”, even though the first line is bleak, you twist the song around by making it uplifting instead. Especially at times like these where a lot of people are going through a time of distress, what made you guys want to sing about a song that makes light out of a tough situation?
If you dwell on the negatives in life, you won’t ever change them. We think it’s important to keep the best thoughts in your head. Don’t let your mind run wild. Not saying you should hide from your emotions - if you’re angry be angry and if you’re sad be sad - but there are times where we can make something that seems terrible something that we either learn from or actually turn around and turn into something uplifting. It’s important to stay around people who support you and who you support – honestly and unconditionally.
Kind of connecting with the uplifting song theme, what message do you hope your music can give to your fans that are going through a rough time?
Have fun. Live life like you love it. Stay true. Party responsibly. Enjoy all your moments with all your friends. You will want to collect as many as you can. We can’t all be together all the time. Make the best of the little time we get to share. Don’t be afraid to let it get weird. Don’t be afraid to dance anywhere. Inspire others to inspire you.
Do you guys have any words of wisdom for any aspiring musicians out there?
Know what you want to do. Have a common direction. Share the music you play openly. Treat your band like a business, but keep it fun. Keep it positive internally – your music should be whatever you want it to be, but be supportive of each other. Stay hungry. Don’t wait for something to happen, make it happen. Become involved in your music scene. Heavily. No one will make it alone. When you start to spend time with each other, you will start to learn more about everyone. Don’t judge each other. Remember the reason you started playing and don’t forget where you came from.