Elder Grown is all about original, organic and funkalicious grooves. The band from Durango, Colorado just released their self-titled album, so I took advantage of the occasion to interview them about this new record. Discover what these creative artists have to say below.
1 – First off, congratulations on the release of this project. Why is your self-titled album labeled as genre-bending?
In this album, you will hear clear voicings of classic rock, reggae, hip-hop, heavy metal, folk, and a variety of alternative styles.
2 – Do you think this is a trendy concept among musicians?
We think it is part trendy, part exploration, but also that there is a uniqueness to it with Elder Grown. Because three brothers with very different tastes and influences are in the band, the family plus influence difference creates a very unique musical exploration and experience.
3 – If you could choose a different title for this album, what would it be?
Dreaming, because this word captures the feeling that Elder Grown embodied in the evolution of this album, as we are on a beautiful journey of testing the limits of our influences and seeing what we can bring together in a single song and then album. Dreaming is the state of mind and attitude where we find our yummiest creative inspiration and greatest freedom to be ourselves, not be afraid to sound weird, and eventually find a lucid state of authenticity.
4 – What was the first song that you recorded together for this album? Is it also the first single?
“Animal” was the first song we started recording, and it is actually not the first single.
The similarities are that a variety of genres are blended, the differences are that in the time between the recording of the two albums we became literally and figuratively a very different band.
6 – What made you all want to get back and record another album?
We are family and love to play music together, it is a way of life for us and the way we explore our creative nature as human beings. Recording comes naturally to us, and recording this album is only the beginning. Many of the songs are our older songs from up to 6 years back, and recording this record set the momentum for the new process to begin. We already have songs for the next album finalized, and we can now move forward into recording it, hoping to release it in the fall of 2087…I mean 2018
“Rolling Thunder” was the most complex song to produce because every member of the band is playing at least one instrument, singing lead or harmony, and soloing.
8 – What kind of vibes are you hoping the listeners are getting from the album?
We hope that they are getting to explore different vibes: relaxing, fun, celebratory, sad, humorous, and love. The variety of our songs are intended to create a liberating experience for the listener, much like a radio station would, that allows the listener to relax into a shifting and evolving experience. Many albums can end up sounding like the same song over and over again, but this is not Elder Grown’s intention or Elder Grown’s way of doing things.
9 – What roles did each of you play in the band while producing this masterpiece?
Well, Josh Hoffman who’s the oldest of the three brothers in the band was who initially got the process going for recording this album. He bought pretty much everything you would need for a home studio and was the one who pushed us to start recording all of these tunes.
John Hoffman, as well as being one of the main songwriters, helped with scheduling and finding times that worked for the whole group to make these recording/ writing sessions happen.
Paul Hoffman was also one of the main songwriters on the album, helped arrange most of the tunes, but was the much needed comic relief at times when things got a little frustrating.
Brandon Clark helped fill in all the gaps. If we needed harmonies over a vocal line, he’s the guy. Some funky piano riffs, he’s the guy. You need a bass player because John (our main bass player) is the one singing and playing guitar on a tune, he’s your guy!
Sam Kelly was the one who finally cracked the whip though. The album had been taking longer than expected to record, and it was starting to wear on everyone, so he reached out to a professional recording engineer friend of his in town, Scott “Scooter” Smith, and they devised a plan to get the album done in a timely, orderly manner so the band would have some fresh material to tour with over the summer. He kind of manages the group from the business end of things. He books all of our shows, and does all of our social media and marketing and helps put a professional shine over everything we do.
We plan to play a variety of strong festivals and shows throughout the southwest while touring our album, and are planning to release our next album at the end of the year. So look for Elder Grown in your area Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona, and keep an ear out for the evolution that is Elder Grown. We are proud of our ability to evolve and grow as musicians while producing variety and freedom in our music. This pushes us to bring positive music into peoples lives that inspires them to be free with their hearts, explore their variety of interest, play many different instruments, and remember that Elder Grown is here to support all of our human journeys towards rich lives and holistic evolution.