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We caught up with Pat and Kennedy from the band last night hours before they took the stage for one of the small club shows they’re doing on their current Free For All tour where they play all of American Candy. As well, they play a ton of older tracks and fan favorites from their past releases! These small club shows are a unique experience during their current tour where the majority of the shows are completely free for fans in spaces that aren’t typically used for shows including a performance they’ll be doing tonight right outside Gillette Stadium! In my new sit down, Pat and Kennedy chat with me about how the tour has been going including the high points and challenges. We also talked the songs they think are going over well on American Candy and even some new songs your eardrums may get to hear as early as early next year. Read on for our new one and catch them on the rest of their current tour!
You’re on the Free for All tour. Maybe how long has this tour been an idea for you? You’re playing these small club shows but you’re playing outside Gillette tomorrow.
Pat: Five years or so, we’ve had the idea. Yeah we thought of it back then and couldn’t really make it happen. We tried to do it but we were trying to get people to pay for it. All that stuff. We couldn’t make that happen so we just kind of put the idea on ice for a while. I think now we’re finally in a position where our fans are getting older. They have connections at venues. There’s just all these like random things that kind of came together to make it possible. We’ve made relationships with people at venues over the years and all this stuff. So now it’s like finally actually able to happen.
And you’ve obviously had some unique experiences on this tour. I know you were just at Gillette kind of like playing around on the field.
Kennedy: Yeah that was wild.
Maybe what’s been like the best part of this experience for you? I know you’re playing a few of these unique American Candy shows I think it’s about seven shows within the Free For All tour and maybe the biggest challenge?
Kennedy: I mean one of the cool parts about it is the amount of people that are showing up that are new faces. I’ve seen full families, grandparents as well as just people that are bringing their best friends out to the show that maybe wouldn’t have gone to a show prior and I think that is really cool. For us to be able to do this band while also giving thanks to people that already are supporting us.
Pat: I think the biggest challenge is just like we’re playing these environments that aren’t necessarily made to have concerts. That’s been a little interesting. It almost doesn’t feel like a tour because every day is completely different. Like generally on tour, we just get into this like routine.
Kennedy: We’re at venues every day.
Pat: We’ve like broken that completely because it’s like one day you’re in a mall parking lot. One day, you’re at a venue. The next day you’re playing a hotel thing at like a radio station.
Kennedy: Then we’re breaking it up with these American Candy shows.
Pat: Which are completely different set lists and stuff. So you don’t really ever quite get in like the routine of it. Which is kind of nice. It almost feels like we’re just playing a bunch of like random shows. Which is cool. It’s very different and it keeps it interesting. I mean we’re out there carrying all the gear every day and building the stage and stuff. When we do it at like a mall, we’re doing it at these places where they’re not used to running shows. So they can’t really help out.
Kennedy: We kind of have to take the lead.
Pat: So like all of us go out there and do it and stuff so it’s been really, really cool.
Perfect, and then is it still how it was originally going to be for these shows. Where you play American Candy front to back and then you come back out?
Pat: Yeah we don’t ever leave.
Kennedy: Yeah we don’t actually leave the stage.
Pat: We do play the record then we just keep playing a bunch of old stuff afterwards.
Is it songs that you haven’t played before?
Kennedy: Some of them, yeah! I think we kind of try to pick at least ones that haven’t been super consistent in the past year or two.
Pat: Then there’s songs from American Candy that we’re playing on these shows. There are three that are only being played at these shows. We’re not playing them on the other tour and they haven’t ever been played before. So it’s kind of weird because we go like a week without playing them and then we do it again. So it’s been very interesting. It keeps it fun. It keeps it exciting. It’s so easy to get caught in like a routine. It’s like we’re going to go on tour and we’re going to bring out four bands that are doing really good right now. Like put together this tour and it’s so easy to get caught in that. I’ve just seen that so many times but for us, we like to have fun so the more things we can do to keep it interesting and keep it not what we just did, the better. Even if it ends up being a really bad idea, I would rather like fail doing something different then like succeed just being boring.
You guys always tend to mix it up anyways. Like the acoustic tour, obviously these American Candy shows and Forever Halloween shows and that kind of thing. I wanted to ask you, when we talked the album was brand new. I think it was maybe only a month in but it’s had time to grow. For a lot of fans, I’m sure it seems like a little bit of a departure. You’ve been playing these front to back shows. How do you think it’s been going over? Maybe is there a song that sticks out to you besides like a single that is really catching on with the kids?
Pat: Man, I mean the reaction to this record. Like the first thing I can say off the bat is people are reacting to it a lot faster than any other record before. Pioneer now like anything off that record that we play goes over really well but it took like two years for that to happen and this is kind of happening pretty instantly.
Kennedy: Yeah most of the set when we play the new American Candy songs, it feels really energetic throughout the whole thing. Obviously I think English Girls kind of has a bit of energy to it.
Pat: It’s been out the longest.
Kennedy: Yeah because it’s been out the longest.
Pat: I would say Diet Soda Society is one that we’re only playing on these shows, I’ve been surprised by that one every time that we’ve done it. Just by people and their reaction to it because that one to me kind of feels like an outlier on the album a little bit. People have been really digging that one. It makes it cool because now we know we can play all these songs because we booked these shows so we have to figure out how to play the whole thing. Which we don’t do with every single album. Which I think we should do because then we have to learn them. It makes it cool because now we know how things go over. So I think in the future, we’re going to on tours in the rest of this album cycle, we’re really going to be able to mix up the record. I want to keep all these songs in rotation as much as possible.
Perfect, then like I said, you guys are always touring and this is a pretty unique tour. You’re playing free shows, playing across most of the states. I think you’ve been on this tour for at least two weeks or so. Think you started right at the end of August. Maybe what’s kind of coming up considering the record is still so new? I know it’s something you really only did finish like a year ago.
Pat: Recording it? Yeah, it hasn’t even been that long.
Kennedy: November, from when we started it, it will be a year. From when we started recording it.
Pat: Yeah! We’re going to tour. We’re going to the UK after this. I mean obviously we’re going to continue doing the rest of this tour which is kind of the big push right now. Us doing the free tour. Then we’re going to record some stuff. We already recorded a couple things and I would think probably by like early next year, we’re going to release something. It’s not going to be a record or EP or anything but we’re going to put out some songs.
Pat: Songs. That’s all I’m going to say is that there are songs.
Kennedy: Some songs.
Pat: Some songs.
Kennedy: Some things.
Pat: It’s not like time yet to make a record.
Pat: We need to grow on this one so we don’t make the same album again. We’re kind of at that point now where we’re like not even beginning to talk about anything.
Kennedy: There’s just still a lot to push for on this record.
Pat: We’ve found that like if we give it some time, then we gain like brand new experiences and things to draw from. So we just need some more of that time of just being alive. Like before we go back into that but yeah, there’s going to be songs and we’re going to continue to tour. We’re going to be all over the place.
Kennedy: We’re going to be doing a bunch of touring.
Pat: Think we’re going to try to do something where we play a lot of the places that we haven’t played in a while. We’ve been kind of playing the same markets over and over. So I think the next tour that will be the goal. Is to go to the places that we don’t really get to go too often.