SXSW Interview: Vintage Trouble
Explosive rock & soul band wants to get to know you
By Jim Caligiuri,
11:00AM, Tue. Mar. 11, 2014
Ever done a three-way... interview? I did, with a trio of the foursome known as Vintage Trouble. It’s unusual to do a phone interview with an entire band, so I was wary beforehand, but they were well-spoken. As a matter of fact, in the end it was one of the most intense and satisfying interviews I’ve ever conducted.
Buzz on the Hollywood-based rock & soul band grows daily. Founded in 2010, the quartet began garnering an international fan base dubbed Troublemakers two years later with the release of The Bomb Shelter Sessions. In the past year alone, Vintage Trouble appeared four times on The Tonight Show, including Jay Leno’s second to last show, and found placement in a TV commercial for Honda.
I spoke with singer Ty Taylor, guitarist Nalle Colt, and drummer Richard Danielson.
Geezerville: I know you’ve been to Austin before. You played at the Austin City Limits Music Festival last year and South by Southwest a couple of times. It seems like you fit right into what happens here musically.
Ty Taylor: The first time we got to Austin and South by Southwest we thought it was the most amazing thing we’d ever been a part of. Austin is just so laid back compared to some of the other legendary music cities we’ve been too. There’s a just a hunger for music and there’s this old school rock & roll thing where everybody lacks pretension. When we played Austin City Limits last year, we met Carolyn Wonderland one weekend and Patrice Pike the next. So not only did we get to hang out in this great city, but we got to play with some of its royalty.
Nalle Colt: We rented a house during ACL. It was just incredible. There’s no other place like it. I wish I could live there. I tried it during the summer, but it’s way too hot there.
G: The Honda commercial expanded your audience. How do you react to people that call that selling out?
NC: We’re still a band trying to put our footprint on America. It’s been helping us a lot. We’re a band that runs our own label. We do our own thing. We’re okay working with corporations and doing something where we can get something out of it as well as they do. They asked us to do something because they like what we do and we take that as an honor. So we made a whole bunch more Troublemakers.
Richard Danielson: It brought us a lot more fans, but it also brought us the type of fan that might not be a Vintage Trouble fan. It’s not like we sold out and played a song that didn’t speak to us. It was something that we were able to take under our wing and make it our own.
TT: A friend said to me the other day, “As an artist you can be kind of great or you can be really great.” For us, working with a corporation is huge. You don’t have to preach to the choir usually. So as good as it feels to play to our fans in a juke joint, those people already get what we’re about. If you can get into the lives of Americans that will not come and see a soul band, that’s helping us and that’s the part of the world we want to know about us. It’s fine for people to be into pop, or heavy metal, or punk, but those are very specific and they’re not going to reach everyone. Soul music, classic rock & roll music, everyone feels as a kindred spirit when they hear it and that’s the kind of stuff we need to get to the forefront.
G: What’s the word on a new album? Any idea when we’ll see a follow up to The Bomb Shelter Sessions. 2012 seems like a long time ago.
NC: We’re working on something. It will be similar, recorded live. We’re looking into a deal with a label, so no release date yet. But we definitely have all the songs and we’re ready to go.
Official SXSW Showcases
Tuesday, March 12, Empire Garage, 9:30pm
Thursday, March 13, Butler Park Stage, 7pm