It’s an undisputable fact that being a musician is a way of life, not just a talent. Writing and creativity come from deep places and strong emotions but you can’t just write music. You have to live it and believe it. This brings me to a point: If one has to live their strong emotions..something entertaining is about to happen. Rock music, in particular, has always made the best headlines, covering things like Axl Rose’s temper tantrums, sex, drugs & alcohol, pushing boundaries, and careless attitudes. In the recent years, the Rock scene calmed down and Hip Hop has taken over the “bad boy” route. PoundSalt is bringing Rock back on its feet.
The first time I saw them was when I was judging the Orlando’s Next Big Thing series. Undoubtedly, they’re extremely talented (which one can tell by the spotless set they played), but there’s something other than their music that caught my attention: their attitude. The things said between their songs and the lyrical content, combined with the way they beat their instruments demanded respect. Turns out that’s what they’re after. I got a chance to have a talk with this three-piece, Funk/Rock band that will make your ears very happy if you’re ready for the modern version of Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Casey (Jones- Bass/vox) and Brett (Shock- guitar) have been friends since high school, in Ohio, playing in different versions of poundSalt. Their path to finding a dedicated drummer took them from Ohio to Florida, where after short periods with other drummers they finally found the missing piece in James (Van Bremen- drums/vox)
Sanja: Why are you playing music? What does it mean to you?
poundSalt: Obviously it means different things to us individually and to answer that question like that would take forever. As a whole, it’s everything! Not one of us (or any musician maybe) hasn’t sacrificed a lot to continue this band. Better paying jobs, family time and of course money. As a band that struggles for every bit of merch and recording we do, it can be hard to see bands that do have financial backing, however they achieve it. It’s literally “pay bills or buy strings” with us and we all play broke down gear. But stopping isn’t an option. Period. That’s how much it means. We’ll play on shit if you’ll listen!
Sanja: Who writes your lyrics? When did you start writing? What do you usually write about?
James: Casey primarily writes the tunes and lyrics, but we all throw in our two cents now and then. I actually do a bit of songwriting myself and we are little by little working in a more collaborative way. ‘Window’ was the first song we ever collaborated on and it came out great.
Casey: I began writing poetry around 16 and then turning them into songs around 18. I don’t really have a formula for writing songs, I just write as the mood strikes and it varies a lot. Some are 1st person, some 3rd, and some are about nothing whatsoever.
Sanja: Do you have any recent, major events worth mentioning?
poundSalt: We are really excited to have new recordings out and we get regular play at Vradio in Vegas. We can’t wait to see how well that stuff does.
Sanja: What are your aspirations?
poundSalt: Does word “domination” sound cliché? Seriously, we want to be able to get rid of the 9-5 stuff and pay the bills making music… but all we really want is respect. We hold our own with any other band out there and we want our dues. If you have to struggle and be at it for a long time to get it, then we got it. Our live show is a high octane, head-noddin’, crowd-involved, dance party! Our originals take it anywhere from hip-hop and funk, to some heavy rock tunes for the moshers. If nothing else comes from poundSalt, we truly believe we’ll get the chance to prove ourselves in front of fans and our peers. We, no doubt will rise to the occasion, like we always do. If you find yourself sharing the stage with us one night, it means you better step it up a notch. Cause’ if you don’t, nobody will know you were there.
Sanja: Do you have a plan B?
poundSalt: NO. Next question.
Sanja: Do you ever get hate mail?
James: Never actually. We got props from everyone we’ve ever played with. Not a show goes by we don’t make a new fan. Usually the other bands. Perhaps the only good thing about being on our level (the bottom) is that no one cares enough to hate on you. You gotta really suck to bring out the haters. People are more interested in how we do it.
Casey: One night in Ohio, a man said I was a shitty bass player and James (our former guitarist) knocked the guy out. No more problems after that.
Sanja: What do you like the most about being a musician?
poundSalt: The answer to that has the potential to go really deep and be really long. So in short, trying to prove yourself. It’s what keeps us on stage instead of just jamming in the garage.
Sanja: What is the most difficult thing about being a musician?
James: Trying to prove yourself.
Sanja: Anything you’d like to add?
poundSalt: Eat more Cheese-its.
To see their music video “Window” go to www.poundSalt.com