Straight out of Daytona Beach, Florida, the next big American rock band comes with a sound that delivers straight to your ears. Like a lightning storm in a bottle about to break, here comes “Orange Avenue.”
SE: How did you guys meet up?
Derek Anderson (Vocals): Our families all moved here [Daytona Beach, Florida] eventually and we’ve been living here for several years. Through mutual acquaintances and musicians we got together two years back and started writing some music.
SE: What kind of music inspires what you play now?
Sean Sedita (Drums): We are into a lot of the newer bands; The Killers, The Rejects, Kings Of Leon, Silversun Pickups, groups like that. We are also into a lot of older bands; Pink Floyd, Depeche Mode, stuff like that. We kind of each have our own influences.
SE: You are based in Daytona Beach but do you have any major tours planned soon?
Derek: We are doing some east coast stuff. We tend to come home and play some shows around the neighborhood and then we plan on some short tours up the east coast and currently we are going everywhere from Georgia up to New York. Every time we go on tour we add a new show, a new venue and they like us so we keep on coming back. We are kind of building up an east coast following. It’s pretty fun.
SE: Talk about your album. When did it come out? How well has it been received?
Sean: Actually we are really excited about it. It came out late, end of the year last year. It’s got pretty good momentum going, we were fortunate enough to have one of our singles “Just Refrain” featured on the Winter Olympics. It will also be featured on the 2010 Men’s and Women’s NCAA Final Four Basketball Tournament. Rock Band picked it up. To be honest with you it’s just like little grassroots stuff that has been catching on and we’ve been fortunate enough to get on MLB Network, TNA Wrestling, Bubble Clothing Stores they have it going on in there. We also have the video from “Just Refrain” playing on different Jumbotrons throughout the US right now.
SE: What’s it like to play your own song on Rock Band?
Derek: Actually we haven’t played it. We’ve seen it done in expert mode. If you go to Google right now and search “Just Refrain” and “Rock Band” there’s a preview where you can see it played in expert mode. We haven’t played it but we are going to have a Rock Band party and invite all our friends over and play it.
SE: Where do you want to take your music? With the way pop music is nowadays where do you see your music in five years or just a year?
Derek: We definitely want to stay relevant and be out there in the mainstream marketplace. There are not many bands on Billboard or the Hot 100 compared to just straight up pop acts. We just want to continue to make music we believe in and feel is relevant and making some noise pretty much.
Sean: Also I think we’ve kind of lucked out in a sense that the music that we write is enjoyed by such a wide range of fans. We’ve just lucked out that the five of us get to play artistically, the music that we want to do and people like it. It fits and hopefully we get to keep doing it that way. We can keep our integrity as musicians but at the same time play stuff that people want to hear.
SE: What do you think people want to hear? In your opinion, what’s good in pop/rock music right now?
Sean: To be honest with you I think it’s in a really tough state but it’s in a good state as well. You look at some of these bands and with the radio and all the pop stuff that is happening right now, I think there’s more of a calling for bands but not to be so much on that bubble gum pop type stuff. I think you’re looking at bands like Linkin Park, Muse, Kings of Leon, Silversun Pickups and there’s other bands out there but I’m talking about bands in the mainstream light. I think the future is within those types of bands. I think it’s a good time for a new sound to take shape like a new era in rock music. You can hear it on the radio and see what bands are doing and you know, it’s time.
SE: So you’re saying there is a renewed demand for rock on the pop charts?
Derek: For sure, there’s hardly anybody even on the charts. For the last year as far as rock bands go.
Sean: There’s some bands that choose their sound to fit a pop genre. Everything from taking out the grungey guitar sounds and adding synth or adding a lot of trigger drums. I don’t think it’s a trend, it’s more of a way the people have figured out a unique sound but at the same time there are bands that are sticking to their guns. In the end I think that rock sound is going to come back in a new way by allowing that sound to come out.
SE: What is an Orange Avenue show like? Please share a wild story from the road.
Derek: There was one show. What was it St. Paddy’s Day?
Sean: Yeah, it was St. Patrick’s Day.
Derek: Okay. St. Paddy’s Day, Spring Break down here [Daytona Beach] and it got pretty crazy. People were getting pushed up on to the stage. The radio DJ had to double as a bouncer that night.
Sean: Somebody literally fell up from the crowd onto the stage. It was a block party and I think it got a lot bigger than people that had the event had imagined. We did what we do best and handled the crowd pretty well. By the end of the day it was all good, nothing had happened. Nothing bad had happened. I think there is some video of that show on youtube or something.
Derek: We had a banner on the front of the stage and by the end of the night that f*cker was gone.
Sean: [Laughs] Our shows can get pretty intense. We still play smaller shows at times like a bar or something. The shows on a larger stage we get really intense and have a good time. It’s a mind-blowing experience when you’ve got a whole crowd going and especially when they are singing the lyrics it’s really fun. Our show caters to the size of the crowd.
SE: Any idea when you will have enough material to release a new album?
Sean: Actually we are currently writing for the new record now; we are hoping to start recording it in December with a release of early next year.
Derek: One of the things we are doing this time around, we are actually documenting everything we are doing with the recording process. Fans can go to our website and follow us through our entire writing process. It will include everything from your typical blog to full-length segments of us in the studio and writing. Probably of us arguing, who knows what we are going to put up there? But we are going to put up the whole documentation process for our new album.
SE: Anything else you guys want to add?
Sean: If you join our website, we are going to be releasing content to fans only. You will be able to get pieces of demos and cool stuff like that if you join it, it’s just like one guy that is sending you the stuff. There are no third parties or anything like that. So if you join our site you won’t get spammed or anything you will just be able to access parts of the site you wouldn’t normally be able to access. We will have a lot of different songs. We might even release a B-side or something like that.
SE: Super cool. I’ll be checking it to see when you will be on the west coast.
Derek: Actually we might be doing that pretty soon.
Sean: I think we have some end of October dates.
SE: We’ll see ya there.