Hedley guitarist, Dave Rosin, spoke to me by phone about the band’s newest release, The Show Must Go. Hedley were then putting the finishing touches on an extremely productive and busy year. They played their last show of the year on December 18th and then headed home to Canada for some well-needed and well-deserved rest and relaxation. Here is how the conversation went.
Hey Dave how are you doing today?
Dave: I am doing great. Is your day going okay?
Yeah man. You guys are in San Francisco today, right?
Dave: We are in San Francisco today yes. Yesterday was a travel day and the record came out on the 7th, we were in New York for that. I literally spent the first few days of this trip in my long johns and wool socks. When we hit the West coast yesterday it was definitely nice to be able to shed a layer of clothing.
So how is the tour going so far?
Dave: The tour is going pretty good man. It is funny this tour is more kind of like radio shows. We are doing a kind of acoustic duo sort of thing because of entertainment and the recession you know. But tonight the other guys are flying in and we are playing a show with The Goo Goo Dolls. Then we are home on the 18th and we will actually be home for Christmas this year so that will be nice. The band just recently toured as a whole unit in October and it has been really cool. We haven’t really toured down here in the last 4 years so it is great to be back and nice to see fans at shows that have seen us before and that have come from a couple of counties over to come see us again. Or even people that have not seen us… it is great.
Now that you new CD, The Show Must Go is complete, how do you feel about it and are you satisfied with the outcome?
Dave: Yeah absolutely man, it is funny, when we were recording the CD, we did not realize it was going to be released in the U.S. We were making a record just for ourselves and trying to make the best record that we could. I would say The Show Must Go is like an exercise in pop. As a band we always try to flavor our songs differently and anybody that has seen a show or heard a record knows that we try to jump around a little bit style wise. This is because I don’t think we will ever be a band that does the same old thing over and over again in the same tempo and the same key. We try to spice things up. We are big reggae fans and we always have some reggae tinges on all of our records.
You have got to kind of remember that as you are working on a record it kind of feels like a secret, you know, nobody knows else knows about it and you are really into the songs. Then when the record is out, it is no longer ours because it becomes the fans. They can listen to it and decide what songs they would like to hear. At a show we are only four dudes on stage with a couple hundred or a thousand people in the audience. Those are the people that went out and bought the record, then said hey these guys are playing tonight and organized friends to go with and show up at the show with another thousand people and sing along. We are such a small part of what is going on there.
With the success of your previous records did you find any pressure when you were recording this one?
Dave: I think we always try to just do something different and something better if you ever make a record and say, “hey that was perfect,” then I think you should stop making records because nobody is perfect. Half of the fun is trying to do something different and better than you did the last time. On our last record we got to take a lot of chances with some of the songs. Some of the more quirky points on the record are some of the things that people kind of gravitate towards and latched on to. So I think, if anything, we felt more able to kind of try something different again and not feel like we were alienating people. Like I said it is an exercise in pop and pop is a vast genre. At the end of the day you have to start with a good song. You have to be honest and have a good song and the rest is like coloring within the lines; it doesn’t matter what color crayon you are using.
Are there any tracks that are personal favorites or that have good stories behind them?
Dave: There is a song called “Friends” which really means a lot to me. It is a really cool, melancholy song about people you meet in your life. Also there is a song called “Colors” which is a lot of fun to play. It has a lot of really cool guitar parts and I am a total guitar geek.
Are you planning on hitting the road again in support of the record?
Dave: Yeah we are going to do something in the New Year. We are probably not going to be on the road in January. We have had a really busy year and we need some time at home for all of our sanity. It is a great job that we do, but Jacob and I have definitely been away from our families a lot this year, so we need a bit of a break to clear our heads. We will probably be touring hopefully in February or March. We have a couple of things on the back burner that we are kind of waiting to see if they pan out and we are probably going to do some writing. We are always trying to stay on our toes and keep the ideas stockpiled.
So you are already looking towards the next record?
Dave: Oh absolutely, it is funny as soon as the last one was finished we started talking about the next one. Like I said, when we put out a record and it is no longer ours and we have to move on. Now touring the record and playing those songs is different. But as far as creating something new we are moving on right away.
What artist would fans be surprised to find on your iPod?
Dave: PM Dawn.
Tell me about a book you have read that you think others should read?
Dave: “Life Of PI” It is a story about how things are not always what they seem.
If you had not become a musician, what other career path would you have liked to attempt?
Dave: You know if I wasn’t playing music I would probably want to be a welder or an electrician or something like that; doing something with my hands, some kind of trade.
What 3 words best describe Hedley?
Dave: Out Of Order.
If you were a superhero who would it be and why?
Dave: I would be The Green Lantern, because who wouldn’t want to make things giant with the ring on your finger.
Any closing words?
Dave: If anybody has not seen us yet, come check out a show and hang out with us sometime. We will tell you dirty jokes and have some beers. [ END ]