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Nash Overstreet called in to the show from Los Angeles to chat about his new solo EP, ‘U Don’t Get 2 Do That.’ The Hot Chelle Rae guitarist also talked about keeping in touch with his bandmates, Mike Posner inspiring him and working with other artists like Britney Spears and Rachel Platten on different projects.


After spending her 2016 battling cancer and completing the New York City Marathon, American Idol alum Jax kicked off the new year with some new tunes.

The New Jersey native, nee Jaclyn Miskanic, released an EP on January 27 called “Funny.” Yes, she’s pretty lighthearted in person, but at times perhaps all she could was laugh when she dealt with both personal and professional highs and lows.

“It’s kind of just about a toxic relationship that you can’t get enough of,” she explained when I asked the inspiration behind “LSD” – a song which plays off of the Beatles’ classic “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” and one that we world-premiered on the radio show last week. “I think everyone has been there in their own way.”

The first time Jax joined my show was about a year ago; she had just released “La La Land” and stopped by to promote it. The next time I interviewed her was over the summer, after she revealed the thyroid cancer diagnosis and her plans to not only defeat it but then conquer the NYC Marathon.

“I feel great. I ran a freakin’ marathon!” Jax insisted when I inquired last week how she was feeling. “Everything’s good.”

Jax was happy to complete the 26.2 mile trek through New York City’s five boroughs, an experience she simply described as “awesome.” Will she run it this year as well?

“I think I will… don’t quote me!” she responded. “I have to start running again. I just got an Apple Watch. I think that was like my mother’s way of telling me you need to start working out again!”

The annual marathon doesn’t take place until later in the year, giving Jax plenty of time to not only train but also promote and perform her new EP… or at least devise a plan to do so.

“I think we’re kind of winging it,” she revealed. “We’re just putting out the material and hoping that everyone kind of connects with it. We have some shows and ideas coming up so we’ll keep everybody posted but I’m just really nervous for the release.”

Also out January 27, a new EP from Hot Chelle Rae guitarist and long-time friend-of-the-show Nash Overstreet, who coincidentally co-wrote and produced a song on Jax’s project. The “Idol” runner-up recalled meeting Overstreet a few years ago during her run on the TV show but he actually remembered a chance-encounter with the singer at a talent show in New Jersey a few years prior to that. Regardless, the two linked up via social media and eventually hit the studio together to collaborate on “Stars.”

The track is one of six on the new EP; Jax recorded a number of other songs as well that she hopes to release in the not-so-distant future.

A new single and a new look mark 2014 thus far for the pop-rock outfit Hot Chelle Rae. The band believes “Don’t Say Goodnight” will be the single that buoys its third studio LP. Meanwhile that album will be recorded without bassist Ian Keaggy, who left the band on amicable terms.

“I don’t think he was cut out for the road,” lead singer Ryan Follese told “The Ralphie Show.” “He loves playing music and he’s very passionate about art but I mean, we’ve been touring for two-and-a-half, three years.”

People change with the times. For Keaggy, that meant buying a house and settling down with a steady girlfriend.

“We’re ready to amp it up, where as he was ready to kind of tone it down,” Follese continued. “It all ended on good terms.”

Guitarist Nash Overstreet chimed in that the guys are all still close. It was simply just a matter of some people adjust better to life on the road than others. For HCR, most of their summer in 2013 was spent traveling with Justin Bieber’s “Believe Tour.”

“He was actually really, really nice to us,” Follese said. “He watched our show a couple times from side stage, which we thought was really cool. He even said songs that he liked in our set, which was really cool. It meant he actually did watch it.”

Overstreet went as far as to defend the beleaguered pop star.

“I went out to enough clubs during that tour to give eyewitness to the fact that like, ‘Oh, that club where he spit on the guy? That never happened!’” the guitarist said. “I was right there.”

With Follese’s brother Jamie still in the mix, HCR plans to stay a trio for now. The lead singer says the band has friends who can step in on bass once a tour pops up. No such plans were in place prior to the release of the new single.

“It’s got kind of, more of a classic like, soaring melody in the chorus, which is kind of a new thing for us,” described Follese of “Don’t Say Goodnight.” The song’s hook does sound like it could be related to something performed by the band fun. “But it’s got like this harder, almost rap-y verses which are really, really fun.”

Follese said the song’s inspiration came from bars closing too early out west. If “Don’t Say Goodnight” can be as big as Hot Chelle Rae’s “Tonight Tonight,” then the party won’t be ending any time soon.

John Oates of Hall and Oates fame is working on a solo album. His first single features the band Hot Chelle Rae.

Here, this should answer all of your questions.

The track is available on iTunes now.

In December, Ryan Follese and Nash Overstreet of Hot Chelle Rae paid “The Ralphie Show a visit to catch up and play a few new tunes from the band’s forthcoming third studio album. The two tracks previewed were to be the first and second singles off the aforementioned LP.

Neither were selected after the Nashville quartet returned to the studio and cut yet another song – “Hung Up.”

I didn’t even know my friends from Hot Chelle Rae recorded this until the band’s fans started frantically tweeting at me about it. As soon as I heard it, I knew immediately we had to play it on the show. Definitely will have this one on repeat during the holiday season.

Ryan, Nash, Ian, and Jamie of Hot Chelle Rae took over “The Ralphie Radio Show” on Monday night. The Nashville quartet mixed stories from behind the scenes with pop culture knowledge and an occasional tongue-in-cheek joke as they hosted four hours on-air. Check out a compilation of the band’s best moments below.

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I’m co-hosted WBRE-TV’s “PA Live!” all week with Monica Madeja. On Thursday’s show, I filed my Ralphie Report, interviewed local artist Dani-elle Kleha, and ate some excellent BBQ from Gerrity’s. Tough life, someone had to lead it.


Hot Chelle Rae seems pleasantly surprised at how well the band’s career continues to progress.

“It’s everything that we thought it would be, but it’s also surprising at the same time,” lead singer Ryan Follese told me backstage over the weekend. Hot Chelle Rae was on one of its many sold out stops for the “Beautiful Freaks” tour. “To be able to have this job and have it take us to the places we’re going, it’s incredible.”

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Case in point: the band recently wrapped a tour through Australia and New Zealand supporting fellow Nashville musician Taylor Swift. Follese said the band and Swift simply had one of “those moments.”

“We were on this boat with Taylor, and we were all just sitting there, trolling about in Sydney Harbor,” the front man recalled. “I was actually standing next to Taylor, and I was like, ‘This job is amazing.’”

Swift concurred.

“As big as she is, she knows too,” Follese said. “The fans are unreal. This whole thing is just incredible.”

Guitarist Nash Overstreet used similar adjectives to describe the tour itself.

“They’re very, very polite and welcoming,” Overstreet noted of the band’s New Zealand fans. “They’re stoked that you’re in their country, they’re stoked that you’re playing.”

But the fans overseas didn’t just make HCR feel welcome by acting as tour guides during the day, or using “please” and “thank you” when asking for photos.

“They knew every word to every song, not just the singles,” Overstreet said. “It gives us a validation of songs we wrote that haven’t been on the radio yet, and to see them fall in love with those is really cool.”

Hot Chelle Rae has charted two tracks from Whatever on pop radio, and a third could be on the way with “Honestly,” a break-up anthem with a music video that features “Pretty Little Liars” star Ashley Benson.

“I think somebody from a show like that is always a really cool edge to add to the video,” Follese said of Benson’s role as his eventual ex-girlfriend. “We reached out to her and she was down to do it.”

Of course, it wasn’t that simple. The actress was getting ready to shoot a movie, and HCR was on tour. All parties involved found one 24 hour window to film. The final piece took 17 hours. Benson left after for her movie; Hot Chelle Rae flew to Australia the next day.

In the end, the guys found a way to make it work. You can’t be surprised at that.

I honestly don’t know what is more compelling: the stories Cady Groves tells, or the manner in which she tells them. Regardless, the 22 year-old is quite the character.

Here’s one example: the Oklahoma-bred singer is currently supporting Hot Chelle Rae’s headlining tour. Groves and HCR guitarist Nash Overstreet are tight – and when I called Nash during my interview with Cady, I found out exactly how tight.

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“Nash and I, we like to play this thumping game, where we thump each other’s genitalia,” Groves revealed in studio, thankfully with the delay button working. “I thump his peen, and he thumps my V.”

You can’t make these quotes up. But back to the original point, it isn’t just the stories that make you laugh, cringe, or in some cases both – but the fact that Groves will rattle this stuff off to semi-strangers the way you talk about walking your dog or shopping for groceries.

“We like to play games where [Nash] is hungover on his bus, and I go and talk to him,” Groves continued. “And he pretends it’s food poisoning.”

“She got the band member wrong,” Overstreet shot back – eliciting “oohs” and laughter from the studio. The guitarist had just returned with his group from Australia and New Zealand, opening up for Taylor Swift.

Now HCR will tour the States with Groves and her stories in tow. She has plenty of tales, and not all of them are about anal sex (“I talk about that all the time”) or her bra size (“I’ll end tweets with, ‘#BCup’). No, some are actually quite serious. Like the one when she fell in love with a producer, only to find out that he was living a double life.

“I told my label (RCA) like, ‘I wanna make my whole album with this guy,’” Groves recalled of the 35 year-old producer. The singer linked up with him when she was 21. “We started looking at apartments together, and I literally thought I was going to spend the rest of my life with him.”

Everything unraveled when the producer uncharacteristically showed up late to a recording session one day. While Groves was actually making apologies for the guy, the engineer unknowingly dropped a bomb on the singer, revealing that the producer lived out in Santa Monica… with his wife.

“My life literally came crumbling down,” she said. “He got there that day, I called his wife, she ended up being like 40 [years-old].”

The producer and artist parted ways, and Groves retreated in to a deep depression. Then, RCA Records came calling, wondering what was happening to their once promising pop starlet.

“My label was like, ‘Dude, get out of bed. Write an album about this guy,’” Groves said. “Everything kind of stemmed from that.”

That album is an EP – This Little Girl – and is available on iTunes now.