Hey guys, it’s Katy with Topper Radio and I’m here with Jared, Ben and Jon from FOXTRAX. Where did you guys all get your start?
Ben: Jon and Jared are bros by blood, but also for fun. Jon and I went to high school together and we became a band in a very unorthodox way, we just went to a cabin in the woods of North Carolina for fun, we were terrible. When we left there we were slightly less terrible, but still mostly pretty bad. We somehow stuck with it for a couple months after that and people started to respond immediately to a lot of the songs we were writing and the energy we were bringing on stage and that was cool. We also kind of knew we had something good going. It’s been great.
Where are you guys originally from?
Ben: Oceanside, Long Island, New York.
What is your inspiration for your sound and how would you describe it?
Ben: I mean I would say that we’re an amalgamation of the rock and roll triage, but also a lot of soul, funk and blues. Jeff Buckley is a singer I love singing to. Have you ever seen The Last Waltz? It’s a movie about a band; Martin Scorsese directs it. There’s a weird scene in the movie where they ask, “Oh what do you guys play?” and he’s like “Oh a little bit of Blue Grass, a little bit of folk, little bit of funk, this, that, and the other.” The other guy replies “so what is that?” to which they reply “Rock & Roll,” and I agree with that.
How is the tour going so far?
Jon: It’s been amazing. Every city we’ve gone to the response has been really good. It’s amazing to be on tour with someone like Barns Courtney as well, another young artist I think we relate to each other a lot. We learn a lot from each other. It’s really great to see him as he is developing in his career as well. He’s been around more than us, he’s opened up for Ed Sheeran, he knows the ins and outs of touring, it’s great being with them because we’re able to learn a lot from them.
Ben: It’s so wild because we’re just starting, everything is kind of happening so quickly now. There was a period in our band’s career where everything happened really slowly. We would play a show and a couple people would talk about it, and maybe a month later we would play another with a little bit more people. Once you start touring, you see much bigger crowds. Things are starting to happen very fast, it’s very gratifying to play music and lay the groundwork and then actually start to see the fruits of your labor.
Jon: People in Dallas starting cheering for one of our songs, they heard us on Good Morning Dallas and that night people were chanting for “Underwater” which is a really cool experience because they know one of your songs and they’re all singing back the lyrics and it’s really cool going to a place you’ve never been and seeing something like that.
What’s your favorite and least favorite things about being on the road?
Ben: I think my favorite thing is Whole Foods Juices, they got a lot of nutrients which I dig about them. Whenever we’re going from one city to the next we’ll plug in along the route a Whole Foods and that’s how we get our nutrients throughout the day.
So I saw that you guys had a run in with a Bison, tell us about that experience.
Ben: Well we went to this preserve in Salt Lake City, and we saw a lone bison. So we pull over the car and go over, we walk up pretty slowly and it seems pretty chill at first, but these things are humongous, they’re giants. Jared the whole time was like “guys this thing feels threatened by us” but the rest of us were like, “No, it’s fine, Jared doesn’t know what he’s talking about!” Sam was doing social media stuff for us out in front with his Polaroid, ready to go and it just turns and looks at us and then it just starts sprinting at us. After it was over and I was no longer afraid for my life it turned out to be pretty hilarious.
What have you guys been doing in Texas so far and how do you like it?
Ben: It’s been a pretty amazing experience, it’s so different. We’re from the East Coast originally and now we live in LA. Both of those cities for how different they are on the whole pretty similar, the way people think, their mentality. People in Texas are almost from a different country, for us. Just the way they go about life is a slower pace, more laid back, everyone is really nice and considerate and it’s kinda nice.
Jared: I love Texas, there’s a different energy here and everyone is so hospitable. That’s one way to describe our experience so far: just how nice people have been to us and how welcoming and they’re just doing anything they can for us to have a good time and that means the world to us. You don’t get that in New York, you get something else, something that’s beautiful but you don’t get that Southern comfort.
Which place has been your favorite on tour so far?
Ben: Austin, *chuckles*. We’ve been to Austin before, we played SXSW so I have a special place in my heart for Austin. I’ve had some great experiences here, but if you exclude Austin, I would say that I loved Seattle. I’ve never been to the Pacific Northwest before this tour so it was kind of a cool experience. It’s always so sunny in LA and I don’t know if I would love to live in the gloom all the time but it was a nice change of pace to see the rain, clouds, and trees.
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Jon: We actually gather around and have you ever seen “Rocket Power”? You know how they used to do the “woogitys”? We do our woogitys before every show.
Ben: We huddle up, say some inspirational words and then we just woogity it up and we’re out.
Do you guys have anything else you would want to say or for people to know?
Ben: We’re honored that Barns (Courtney) has asked us to come on the rest of the tour. We’ll do a little headline up to New York, record a new EP which we’re super excited about and then after that, we have about 10-15 dates with Barns around the rest of the country. It has been a crazy last minute, moving around, shifting of things but we’re excited, there’s good stuff to come.
Jon: We just released our really fun cover video. We are actually big fans of Harry Styles’ release ‘Sign of the Times’ but we wanted to take that and put our own FOXTRAX spin on it. We just released the Youtube video for “Sign of the Times” and we’re really proud of it, so if anyone out there wants to see a nice cover of that song, check it out.
This has been FOXTRAX, check them out and thanks for reading and be sure to listen to Topper Radio!