Guest Interview by Jordan Mohler
Jordan Mohler recently caught up with vocalist Shawn Spann of I, The Breather. They discuss the band’s upcoming tour, favorite albums of 2011 so far, Drive Thru Records, and more!
MEB: First off, how’s the Crush Em All tour been going for you guys so far? The lineup is really stacked, sounds like it’s been really intense every night.
Shawn: We will be joining up with the tour this Thursday (Sep 29th) in Allentown, PA at Croc Rock for about two weeks. Saying I’m excited about this tour is an understatement… We have been waiting for some time now for a tour like this. All the bands on the package fit right in our style so are very excited to play in front of a group who love this genre of music.
Is there an annual tour/festival that you’ve wanted to play, but haven’t had the opportunity to yet?
We played three days of the “All Stars Tour” this summer and I loved it; a bunch of awesome people and tons of new faces to meet every day. It would be an honor to share the stage with a lot of the bands on that package for a whole tour.
What were some of your musical influences and how involved in music were you growing up?
What really got me into music was a label called Drive Thru Records. That label stole my soul at a young age with bands like Senses Fail, The Early November, FINCH, Rx Bandits, and New Found Glory. It was a brilliant idea by the label owners to make DVD compilations of band footage because back then there was no “YouTube” so seeing bands you really liked in action was something new and amazing to me. It gave me hope that one day I could be like them.
What are some goals you’ve set for yourself to accomplish in the near future?
As a musician, I really want to take this music career to the next step. I can hardly wait to record this next album and see how much I’ve matured as a vocalist. I feel like I have really stepped out of the box with the dimensions of my voice and I’m excited to see what I can do in the studio.
What’s it like being one of the few Christian bands (the other being Betraying the Martyrs) on Sumerian Records?
That’s awesome.. Well, until now, I thought we were the only “Christian” band on Sumerian haha. But it really doesn’t make a difference what “genre” you are on a label like Sumerian; it’s just a bunch of hardworking bands and label workers. I feel honored to be a part of such a huge movement in the music industry.
Who’s gonna be producing the new record?
We chose to stay in the our hometown yet again and work with one of the best out there, Paul Leavitt. The guy is a musical genius and has been recording music since I can remember. With this next album, we want to show our diversity as a band and I feel like Paul will really bring it out. He has worked on some of the most brilliant vocal driven albums such as All Time Low, Gwen Stacy, Conditions and so many more. We will be recording in November and are expecting an early 2012 release.
What are your thoughts about Georgia when you stop there?
Georgia, home of the Seven venue, BBQ, The Chariot, Norma Jean, Douglasville!! I mean, I always get excited coming to this state because of the love at the shows. A perfect example is one night I knew some of the guys were hurting for some sleep so I drove about six hours throughout the night to make it to the venue around 5 a.m. (we had a 10 a.m. load in) and when I pulled up, I was beyond blown away to see a group of kids camping out in front of the venue waiting for the show. That’s something music just doesn’t see anymore and it really put me in my place and made me appreciate my life so much more.
What’s your favorite song from the current album to play live?
“The Common Good” always hits home but honestly I STILL love playing our debut album day in and out. I think we really hit home with that album. Some of the lyrical content was thoughts I had built up for years and being able to put them on paper felt amazing. I’m also beyond excited for this next one even more. We have a song we call “No Scope” right now that if I were to say, okay this is us now, it would be this song. I can’t wait to show it to the world and perform it daily.
What are your best albums of 2011 so far?
Man… it was a big year for music this year… but here it goes:
Decoder – Decoder
Conditions – Florescent Youth
Architects – The Here and Now
Dance Gavin Dance – Downtown Battle Mountain 2
Lower Than Atlantis – World Record
Memphis May Fire – The Hollow
Stray From The Path – Rising Sun
And what is one album you think every person should own?
In Media Res by PM Today. This vocalist comes up with some unique vocal patterns and lyrics. The band is also a bunch of musical genius brothers. Sadly, they broke up but this is still by far an amazing album to check out.
Any last words for the fans?
I LOVE YOU GUYS! Come hang out with us on the Crush Em All tour!