Hello there people of the world. It feels so good to be back & posting again after WordPress 3.6 sent the Skope site into a tailspin. Before we begin today I just want to speak on fame. Fame is something that so many people would kill for but what are we asking for exactly?! You can use fame for good or for evil. When I saw Miley Cyrus jerk off Robin Thicke on the VMAs it kind of made me think. Here is a young woman who has been so blessed but instead of inspiring young girls for good she is pushing them towards drug abuse & sex. If that is fame, then leave me out. I do not have to worry about my guests today acting like Miley but I can expext some kick ass music. Please get to know Stonethrow from Atlanta, GA. These three musicians have created a 4 song EP ‘The Spark and The Flame’ and with songs like “Legal Enough” and “Lesson 2” I am a new fan. Join me today as we talk about the history of the band, staying motivated in music, downloads vs streaming, and so much more!
Stoli: Where are we talking from today and how has your summer been so far?
Hi! First off, we would like to say thanks to Skope Magazine for having us! We are joining you today from our home studio just north of Atlanta, GA. It’s been a record breaking wet and stormy summer down this way for us, but I guess its better than the 100 degree days we’re used to this time of year.
Stoli: What is summer like in Atlanta, and what do you enjoy doing in town during time off?
Typically you’ll have very hot muggy summers with plenty of lake activity, but this year it’s been more like Seattle climate. hard to plan anything outdoors with the heavy rains. We stay pretty busy with side projects and studio work, so our ‘time off’ is really just time spent playing more music.
Stoli: Give us a brief history on how you three came together and how did you come up with the name STONETHROW?
STONETHROW was originally a 4-piece comprised of two of us (Alex and Jonathan) from here in GA, alongside our original drummer and 2nd guitarist who were from Lexington, Kentucky. We were paired together at the outset of the project by the independent label we were originally signed to that was based there in Kentucky. When the label dissolved, we decided to centralize our efforts back to one area and after several rounds of trial and error, finally landed Thomas on drums. The name was kind of a play on the distance between our 2 bases of operation (a stone’s throw apart) as well as a reference to some of the backlash that Jonathan took from leaving the band he was with to launch this project (having stones thrown at him). The phrase kept popping up, so we figured it represented us pretty well.
Stoli: I am really loving your debut EP, ‘The Spark and the Flame.’ How long did you work on that and where did you record the music?
Thanks! ‘The Spark and The Flame’ EP was recorded in Lexington, KY in October of 2010 over the course of 8 days. 8 18+ hour days. We tracked 7 songs in total, 5 of which made the record. We later finished off an acoustic version of one of the songs ‘The Real You’ and made it available with the digital download purchases.
Stoli: Your group is a trio with Jonathan, Alex, & Thomas. Explain what each member brings to Stonethrow and are you friends beyond the band as well?
Yes, we have great friendships outside of STONETHROW. Jonathan and Alex have known each other for years. Thomas fit right in when he came on board. Collectively we have lots of middle ground on our musical influences, which allows our collaborative songwriting to thrive. While Jonathan writes the majority of the foundation and arrangement of the music, the initial idea is often time sparked by some riff or piece that Alex or Thomas will come up with and it takes off from there. We have interesting blends of external influences though. Jonathan is heavily rooted in country influences, while Alex is into lots of the 90’s grunge era, and then you have Thomas bringing in a blend of vintage rock/funk and even some of the modern electronic type stuff. So there are a lot of different directions we can go once we take off on an idea.
Stoli: Your stats on your fact sheet are so impressive. The music biz is not easy but you guys are thriving. Explain your work effort and the fire that you have to succeed and stay motivated?
Its a difficult industry, but its a changing industry. There really is no blueprint for success anymore with the explosion of digital media outlets and exposure opportunities. It seems like that gives bands the advantage. The endless possibilities and avenues that are present today make it easy to stay motivated. You are always one licensing opp or youtube video away from huge traffic boosts.
Stoli: You guys have supported major label acts like Fuel, Candlebox, Saliva and many more. What group would you say was really cool with you & you were able to learn from?
We always try to really focus learn from the national acts that have been doing this full-time for many years. If bands’ music can influence yours, why shouldn’t their live shows do the same? Candlebox really stood out to us though. Their whole band was out in the audience during our set, and their frontman Kevin Martin made it a point to talk to each of us individually afterwards with some really encouraging things to say. He even wanted to buy a copy of the CD. We gave him 2. With several of the National acts, you don’t see that degree of interaction with the other bands or sometimes even with the fans, so that night really stood out to us.
‘The Long Kiss Goodnight’ Official Music Video:
Stoli: I love the song “Shades Of You.” Who wrote that single and what is it about?
Jonathan wrote that one. Actually the idea came about when he was playing in an acoustic duo side project with a female vocalist. They wanted to have a duet where they both sang and harmonized but they split before the song was completed, so it was sent in on the pre-production for the STONETHROW EP and it took off. We left it in the key written for the female vocal which gives it it’s unique vocal range.
‘The Spark and The Flame’ EP:
Stoli: Music is in such a great place with no boundaries. What two other bands are you guys really enjoying these days?
There is so much good music out there on Internet/satellite radio and at the local level that you have never heard of if you are only dialed into mainstream FM. That’s a tough assignment to narrow down to 2! Of the more popular acts, Imagine Dragons has really found a great combo of electronic elements and well crafted rock songs. Alice in Chains continues to amaze with their new work, its so rare to see a band excel despite the loss of a key member. Hard to leave off The Parlor Mob or Bobaflex though…
Stoli: How much time do you spend on the band per week and do you also have family/work/school?
We all work in music related jobs even away from the band, so its a full-time affair, just different stuff.
Stoli: The music industry has set the digital tone with downloads and streaming. Is this where movies & TV are headed as well and how do you consume digital media?
In time, I could definitely see a continued shift in all types of media becoming more and more ‘on-demand’ and instant streaming, though Its hard to imagine tv/movies going to the extreme that music has. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Netflix!
Stoli: What is one thing that being in Stonethrow offers your life like nothing else?
Its hard to find anything that gives you the rush and satisfaction of writing music you can really stand behind alongside musicians who really believe in the same idea. So much music today is vanilla and written to catch the wave of the hot sound. Its mostly that we can really stand behind our product with STONETHROW.
Stoli: What is coming up for Stonethrow and where are you and the EP @ online?
We are about to begin tracking for our next EP. If all goes accordingly, it should be out in early fall. As our debut record ‘The Spark and The Flame’ was, the new one will be available through all major digital distributors (itunes/amazon/etc) as well as through our official site www.stonethrowonline.com. You can also find us all over social media – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, ReverbNation and such. Again, Thanks for having us be a part of Skope Magazine! Here are the links to our social media sites, we look forward to working with you soon and getting this new record out to you all!
Twitter: www.twitter.com/stonethrowatl Handle: @stonethrowatl