We got the chance to talk to Ballyhoo!’s lead singer/guitarist Howi Spangler. Ballyhoo! is an up and coming reggae band that brings “beach music” to a whole new level by adding pop-punk. They are currently on the Vans Warped Tour 2012.
Read what Howi had to say below:
For anyone who has not listened to Ballyhoo! before, how would you describe your sound?
It's pop-punk reggae. Energetic and still melodic and groovy. Good beach music.
What makes your band different than all the rest?
We have a festive sound. Even our songs with deeper subject matter come off sounding positive. I think we have a sound that motivates people to have fun.
Where does the name Ballyhoo! come from?
We were only 12 and 14 when we started the band. Needed a cool name and a friend of ours pitched it to us. It means "loud noise" or "crazy event". It stuck in my mind when I heard it. One word, iconic. Big and colorful. I thought it would look good on flyers.
What started your love for music and wanting to be in a band?
My dad was in bands all his life. He still had one when I was a 4 or 5 and I remember going to some of his band practices. I was mesmerized. I wanted a double bass drum kit so bad like the hair metal guys in on MTV. He took my brother and I to see Ratt, Poison, Tesla, and Def Leppard. Just when those bands hit their prime. It made me want to do this.
In May, you guys released a music video for your song “Last Night”. What is the song about?
It's about a single guy who's tired of living the night life, drinking all the time and wants companionship. Not another chick from the bar. And just as he gets fed up, he meets the one....at a bar. But this one's a keeper.
Right now, you guys are on the Vans Warped Tour. The tour ends in just a couple days. What would you say was your favorite memory from it?
Just doing the grind everyday. We're doing what most of the other bands are doing. Waking up early to get our posters up and promoting our set time. It's a lot of work, but it feels like we're earning our keep. It's definitely a "right of passage" in some way.
What was your favorite show on this years Warped Tour?
Favorite show was the Maryland play. We're from there. It just felt great to be home and have a packed stage. Seeing all those faces out there, almost like they were proud of us. We were bringing home the title.
How many years has Ballyhoo! played the Vans Warped Tour? (if more than one year) What was your favorite year and why?
This is our first year but we'd be open to doing it again. I heard last year was awesome. There were a lot of our friends on it like Pepper, Passafire, and The Expendables. I don't know if we would've survived that one. :)
For any bands that want to play on Warped Tour, what is your advice to them on how to be able to perform on it?
Put out a good product. Make sure your live show is on point. Find someone that knows Kevin Lyman, ha ha.
It's really all about making your own noise. Kevin will find you if you're doing it right. I've seen him pick up bands for next year already because he saw them play once.
In September you guys are opening for Weezer at the Charm City Music Festival in Baltimore. How does it feel to be opening for such a big name?
We're excited for that one. Weezer is a great band and it'll be rad to play with them. It feels like another thing we've earned through hard work. It will be a pleasure to play that show in general.
What are your plans for after Warped Tour?
We are shooting the video for our next single "Walk Away" and then heading back to California to join Tribal Seeds for the Night and Day Tour. It goes all through September. We don't ever stop.
Are you planning to record another album anytime soon?
Not any time soon. For now I'm just writing and trying step outside the box a little bit. I want to have a ton of material for the next one.
Thank you for your time! Is there anything else that you would like to add?
We want to thank everyone who has bought our music or told their friends about us. It really is the reason we're still able to tour. Thank you!