BearlySinister: Can you start by introducing yourselves and your role in the band?
Stephen Salisbury: My name’s Stephen and I play guitar and sing in GROVES.
Reid Guidry: This is Reid, I play bass.
Will Smith: I’m Will and I play drums.
Stephen: That’s it… there’s only 3 of us. *laughs*
Late last year, you wrapped up a tour with the legendary Culture Club and Boy George. How was GROVES added to this tour and how did it go?
Stephen: You know, it’s funny how it all worked out. It all happened really quickly. We were actually getting off of another tour that was self-booked and then we played with some other friends in bands. We were kind of finishing up that tour and as soon as we got back to LA, we started hearing through the grapevine that we might be going on another tour. Basically, our managers have mutual friends with another manager and through them, they knew some people who worked with Boy George, obviously. I think it was just one of those things where they were touring overseas and they came to the states and needed an opener. They were doing a bunch of shows with Cyndi Lauper overseas and so, when they came to the states they didn’t have an opener anymore. Our managers played their team one of their music videos and they kinda liked it. Really, as far as I know, I think that’s just how the cookie crumbled is they needed an opener for the states and then, at the perfect time, they heard our band and they thought it would be a fun thing. Pretty much within a day, we figured out that we were going to be doing like seven and a half weeks with Culture Club and we had to take off to Chicago, basically the next day.
BearlySinister: Back in July, you returned to Beaumont to play at The Gig. How was it performing in Southeast Texas again after being gone so long?
Stephen: Y’know… it’s always really awesome going back to our hometown, it’s something that we always look forward to. So, that Summer, we wanted to go through and give people a taste of all these songs we’ve been working on. So going there and haven’t having played in quite awhile and playing all these songs for the people who, obviously, had never heard any of the music because at the time I think we only had one song out, which was just “Ender” so… I don’t think it could have gone any better than what it did. Just people coming and trying to catch a glimpse of our past friends who just wanted to see what we’ve been up to in the studio, these songs we’ve been working on. We just wanted an opportunity to play new songs for a lot of family and friends. We all had an awesome time, it’s always awesome and special going back to our hometown.
BearlySinister: Speaking of the new songs, what can we expect out of the sound on those?
Reid: I think it’s gonna be a little bit of a surprise, based on the two songs that you’ve been able to hear. I feel like all the songs on the EP that’s comin’, all have their own thing about them. I’m really looking forward to people hearing the track that’s gonna come out as the first single. I think it’s gonna throw people for a loop. I just think that the sound of it is another layer of the GROVES sound that no one’s experienced yet so, I think all of the songs that are gonna be on the EP are gonna surprise people a little bit based off of the listeners that are listening to “Ender” and “Swim” now.
BearlySinister: Speaking of “Ender” and “Swim” both videos have a very interesting visual element to them and there seems to be some connection. Are you trying to do that with ALL of your videos or is there some kind of hidden meaning behind them?
Will: I guess we’re gonna do three videos in the same vein of those two, where we kind of have a live show and then other elements to go along with it. We also intend on doing some lyric videos and maybe one day a video collage, like a live video, where you get to see the band perform in more of a natural element. By the end of the year, we’ll probably make a visual for every video
Reid: Every song…
Will: Yeah, for every song but there’s 3 videos that are structured and visually similar to “Swim” and “Ender.”
Reid: So, what Will’s trying to say is that the “Swim” and “Ender” video… there’s gonna be one more video that will make those a trio. So, yes… there will be another video coming out that will have that cinematic approach that those two had. We’re also gonna do a few more videos that are a lot different from those.
BearlySinister: How’s your experience been since moving to LA versus TX?
Stephen: Aww, man… it’s like another universe! It’s like another planet! We all decided to move here several years ago because of the opportunity. It’s something that you can’t help… every time you come to this city, you can’t help but see what’s happening here and it really is the mecca of most things in the entertainment industry. We all dreamed of coming here and meeting people and finding people who could just help us realize our dream. I think after a few years, we’re starting to tap into that source and we met Benji and Joel Madden since and they’ve let us record an album’s worth of material in their studio and we’re finally getting to the point where we’re finally gonna get start showing that music to people. We’re really excited basically… all the reasons that we moved to LA, we’re gonna be putting that out for the first time. So… we’re definitely excited to show people what we’ve been working on.
BearlySinister: If you were to pick one band from the Southeast Texas area, one band from LA and any other undiscovered band in the US to tour with, who would it be and why?
Reid: For our hometown, for Southeast Texas… that would be tough because I think we all have 2 bands in mind and that would be Hello Chief and Purple. Both of those bands are really close to us and we just have nothing but love for those guys, we think both of those bands are so talented… so that would be pick to choose just one. So I would say we would have to bring both of ’em.
Will: Yeah, we’d get Purple and Hello Chief back together and then all three of us would tour the world!
Stephen: As far as LA goes, I mean… there’s just so many.
Reid: Gotta pick one, Steve-O!
Stephen: Yeah, I would probably say… I…. I don’t know, man, that’s rough. It would just be fun to do something with… I was gonna say like Red Hot Chili Peppers or something.
Will: *laughs* Yeah, we’ll say Red Hot Chili Peppers, Purple and Groves and Hello Chief.
Reid: Does that answer the question? What was the other part?
Stephen: I think there was a national?
BearlySinister: Not really a national but any band in the US that you would want to be discovered with you.
Will: I love the band Broncho. They’re in the middle of becoming successful and I think they’d be a band that would be really fun to tour with.
Stephen: Yeah, Broncho’s dope.
BearlySinister: Other than the music, music videos and (most likely) tours you’re working on… what else can we expect from the GROVES camp this year?
*talks briefly with management about details that can be discussed regarding the upcoming EP*
Reid: We’re actually getting ready to announce that we have an EP coming out called Not For Nothing and it will be coming February 17th, it has 6 songs on it. That’s the biggest thing we know is coming right now. We’re planning to announce some dates around the release of that which are gonna take us to Texas and it’s gonna kinda route around South By Southwest. That’s the biggest thing we’ve got going right now and that we’re looking forward to. For the rest of the year, I think we’ll be supporting the EP and touring and putting out some videos and probably, towards the end of the year, working on some more music.
BearlySinister: That’s about all I’ve got for you guys. Thank you for doing this, it has been an honor. Is there anything else you’d like to say before we go?
Will: Give us a chance, take a listen. Our EP’s gonna be called Not For Nothing, it’s gonna be on Spotify and you can find it anywhere on the internet. Just give it a listen and I think that if you enjoy one, you’ll enjoy them all.
Pre-Order Not for Nothing here
Stephen Salisbury – Vocals/Guitar
Reid Guidry – Bass
Will Smith – Drums
*special thanks to Press Here Publicity, MDDN Management and the guys in GROVES for allowing us to do this interview!*