Archives For Walk The Moon

For Walk The Moon lead singer Nick Petricca, the band’s new album and current tour have provided him with a New Year’s Resolution for 2018: letting go of fear.

“I feel like when I see my favorite artists on stage, I’m just like, ‘Wow, they just go out there and are hiding nothing,’” he explained to me over the weekend. “They seem fearless. And it’s interesting, ‘One Foot’ in front of the other has become this song that we’ve been kind of like forced to practice what we preach.

“You can’t really think twice,” Petricca continued. “You can’t be up (on stage) judging yourself the whole time or else the thing kind of crumbles.”

The aforementioned “One Foot” is a perfect example of this new era within’ the Cincinnati-based quartet: a catchy, infectious up-tempo sing-a-long that still contains some gravitas and vulnerability. Walk The Moon’s third LP, “What If Nothing,” is the group’s most vulnerable to date: so much so that another benefit arose as the band created the “Press Restart Tour.”

“We can put a little more of an emotional curve in to the set,” guitarist Eli Maiman noted. “I think prior to now, we had a disproportionate amount of songs that were kind of, ‘up.’ The set at this point is very contoured in terms of its emotional impact.”

A quick look back to Walk The Moon’s recent history reveals how this happened: following the worldwide hit “Shut Up And Dance” and the subsequent trek supporting the album “Talking Is Hard,” the band took a break… almost, for good. That changed at bassist Kevin Ray’s wedding; the first time since the hiatus that all four members were together. Shortly thereafter, the group re-entered the studio and began working on what would eventually be “What If Nothing.”

Petricca believes the band is hungrier than ever, and part of that may be attributed to what they learned about each other during their time off.

“We all are respecting our own humanity on a different level,” the front man admitted. “I think we’re seeing the ways that it serves the music as well; not just burning all of the candles at all of the ends and playing as many shows as possible but also just making sure that we are 100% for the listeners and for our fans.”

I caught up with three-fourths of Walk The Moon before soundcheck at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut on Saturday; drummer Sean Waugaman was napping and understandably so. The guys just landed that morning from a red-eye flight after performing a radio show in Los Angeles the night prior. A full schedule of promo followed soundcheck; the band then took the stage around 9:10 pm.

And yet despite all of that, the quartet sounded fantastic Saturday night. It was if once on stage, they were fearless.

I recently bore witness to a rather unique interaction: one of my favorite bands, Walk The Moon chatting and exchanging numbers with Diane Warren, who is a legendary songwriter. The guys from WTM were leaving my broadcast booth and thankfully, Warren was on her way in. I immediately wanted to know what they all chatted about.

“They were in the audience at the ASCAP Awards; I got a big award that night,” Warren recalled, later revealing that she might collaborate with the band. “Snoop gave (the award) to me, and I had worked with Snoop the year before. We were just joking that he had this giant blunt in his hand and I’m like, ‘Who has a match?’”

There is little if nothing that Warren, whose discography of penned tracks dates back to 1979, hasn’t seen or experienced. But if there has been one constant throughout her storied career, it is her approach to songwriting.

“I always went with my heart,” Warren insisted while noting that this very mindset led her to write “Stand Up For Something,” a song that Andra Day and Common performed for the movie, “Marshall.” She is proud of the final product and rightfully so; the track is up for Best Song Written For Visual Media at this year’s GRAMMYs. It is the eleventh time Warren has received a nomination in this category; she won the GRAMMY for it in 1997 thanks to Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me” from the 1996 film, “Up Close & Personal.”

A number of familiar faces stopped by day one of our backstage broadcast from the American Music Awards in downtown Los Angeles. We caught up with Kelly Clarkson, Julia Michaels, Walk The Moon and many more artists – watch and listen below.




It was a nice welcome to our Westwood One Backstage broadcast for the 2015 American Music Awards: my first interview of the day was the venerable Pete Wentz, bassist for one of my favorite bands Fall Out Boy. Another favorite of mine, alt-pop outfit Walk The Moon stopped by as well. Also swinging through our area: Pentatonix, Lindsey Stirling and R5.




It may simply be a reflection of the times in the music industry more than anything else: a MTV Video Music Award nominee told by the network that he would have to buy his own ticket to the award show.

Actually at first, nominated director Josh Forbes couldn’t even get MTV on the line. When he did connect, the outlet informed him that directors have to buy their own ticket. The cost would range from $450 to $800, depending on where he wanted to sit.

“That doesn’t make any sense. If the director is nominated for a VMA shouldn’t he get a ticket to the VMAs?” Forbes asked on a GoFundMe page he started. “Yes he should. But he doesn’t.”

It’s a little ridiculous: MTV, which barely even plays videos, still holds this annual event to celebrate the videos they don’t play and they can’t even comp the directors that create the art in the first place.

As Forbes also writes on his GoFundMe page though, the idea that directors have to pay their way in is probably more of a nod to the way things used to be than the big giant trying to screw the little guy. Record labels typically cover the costs like this, but naturally those budgets have also shifted with the times.

The Colorado-based director has made music videos for the past decade and also counts Sara Bareilles’ “Love Song” in his credits. His heartfelt explanation and plea via GoFundMe yielded big dividends, to the tune of $2,500. By doubling his goal, Forbes now plans to bring his wife along to the VMAs, along with calling an Uber to get to-and-from the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles.

“Artists and filmmakers get taken advantage of because we’re sensitive people,” Forbes explained in a follow-up post, thanking donors for their generosity.” “We’re not always that great at getting our needs met and valuing our work properly because we’d be doing this for fun anyway. The truth is, the world needs us. And our work is extremely valuable. And I feel this value right now in every donation.”

Regardless of if Walk The Moon’s “Shut Up And Dance” wins the Moonman for “Best Rock Video,” its director scored the top prize.

This week, I chat with one of my favorite bands, Walk The Moon. You’ll hear Nick, Sean, Eli and Kevin talk about everything from life after a mega-hit to opening for The Rolling Stones. The guys also talk about the next single from Talking Is Hard, “Different Colors,” – and you’ll get to hear that as well.
Hey, Really Excited
Plus – I’m headed back to Niagara Falls this weekend. I explain why and what I’m looking forward to while I spend some time back home with friends and family.

Don’t forget – next weekend I’m participating in Urban Mudder, and all of the money I raise is going to Make-A-Wish. Find out more by clicking here.

The conversation has been ongoing. Third Eye Blind’s Steven Jenkins talked about it in his 1998 hit, “Jumper.” The inspiration for the song was a friend of Jenkins’ who committed suicide by jumping off of a bridge. He was gay and a victim of bullying.

“The song is kind of a noir, because it’s really talking to somebody who is already dead,” the lead singer explained. “So this is kind of what you would say (to him).

“When I wrote it, there was this kind of darkness to it. But now when I sing it, it feels exalted, and you see the audience… they sing most of it, I kind of let them sing it… and you can see this release. So I find a lot of joy in that song now. Maybe that’s bouncing back and reflecting the times.”

Perhaps it is – fast forward to 2015 and indie-rock outfit Walk The Moon is releasing, “Different Colors,” a song about acceptance and unity, to radio.

“It feels really relevant to be playing it right now, and really cool,” guitarist Eli Maiman.

“It’s incredible,” lead singer Nick Petricca added. “We’re just all on the same team out here and it’s cool to feel a part of a movement.”

Maiman noted that the song started as a “rallying cry,” but feels more like a “victory march” when it’s played these days. Again, it’s a reflection of the times – the fact that the movement is deemed “cool” is a step in itself. When you add in the Supreme Court ruling and the light that Caitlyn Jenner is shining on the LGBT community, specifically for Trans people, it is easy to see why the momentum behind equality is stronger than ever.

But as Jenner reminded us Wednesday night at The ESPY Awards, there is plenty of work to still be done. She mentioned Sam Taub, a 15 year-old Transgender boy from Bloomfield, Mich. who committed suicide in April.

“Sam’s story haunts me in particular because his death came just a few days before ABC aired my interview with Diane Sawyer,” Jenner said to the audience. The former Olympian was honored by ESPN with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. “Every time something like this happens, people wonder, ‘Could it have been different, if spotlighting this issue with more attention could have changed the way things happen?’ We’ll never know.”

Jenner admitted that she contemplated taking her own life as well. Now she’s hoping that her actions can help others, if by nothing else, keeping the conversation alive.

Photo: instagram.com/espn

Photo: instagram.com/espn

The buzz continues to build, the schedule continues to fill up and the guys that comprise Walk The Moon continue to find themselves in an album cycle that admittedly they want to see stretch out for as long as possible. When you look at what has happened in 2015 to the group, you really can’t blame them.

“Shut Up and Dance” is in serious contention for “Song of the Summer.” The band’s next single from its sophomore album Talking Is Hard will be “Different Colors,” an anthem of different gravitas but near-equal jubilation. And the Cincinnati-quartet is playing all types of stages: as headliners, as supporters for The Rolling Stones and as performers on “Good Morning America” and at MLB’s Home Run Derby in their home city. At this point (or at least the day after their date in Detroit with Mick, Keith and the boys), lead singer Nick Petricca credited “caffeine and adrenaline” with fueling the band, but downplayed any changes of seismic proportions in the group.

“We’ve always kept ourselves working around the clock, so in a way not much has changed,” he told me on “Ralphie Tonight.” “I think we’re going to see the results (of the single’s success) the next time we tour.”

Walk The Moon has already noticed a change in the crowd at shows, especially when those opening notes of “Shut Up” hit the speakers. But their last headlining tour sold out before the song became inescapable.

That’s not to say the single’s success hasn’t brought about other change.
WTM
“I get a whole lot more texts now saying, ‘Hey, I heard “Shut Up and Dance” in X-Y-Z bizarre situation,” noted guitarist Eli Maiman. “So like – ‘I heard it at Cardinals Stadium in St. Louis, or I heard it in Victoria’s Secret this morning.’

“And I’m like, ‘Mom, why are you telling me this?’”

When the laughter subsided, WTM told me that they also want to collaborate with other artists they enjoy; Petricca said the band hasn’t “sold a song” to anyone yet but they have written with other musicians, and Maiman teased a possible Walk The Moon-feature for another singer could be released soon.

The lead singer also mentioned that there’s a chance fans could hear some new material from the group later this year. At the moment the focus is on “Different Colors,” a song that started as a rallying cry but with recent news events such as the Supreme Court’s lifting of same-sex marriage bans, has turned in to more of a “victory march.” The single celebrates diversity and aims to unite.

“It feels really relevant to be playing it right now, and really cool,” said Maiman.

“It’s incredible,” Petricca added. “We’re just all on the same team out here and it’s cool to feel a part of a movement.”

That idea of community is something that the band can easily be reminded of every night, as they perform in front of thousands of face-painted fans whose sole objective is to have fun. No wonder they don’t want this to end.

Walk The Moon talked touring, music tempo and more when they joined “Ralphie Tonight” recently.