An Interview with an Unknown Name in Mainstream Rock: THE HUSH

the_hush

(Photo from The Hush’s Facebook Page)

The Hush is a Los Angeles based band with a modern rock edge backed by killer vocals and a big dose of drama.  They boast an accessible, upbeat sound along the lines of Queen that is the inspiration behind many an “I-whip-my-hair-back-and-forth” dance party.  The band has all the makings of a glam-rock super-group: a well-spread mixture of experienced musicians completed by a sexy and vivacious frontwoman with a powerhouse voice. I got to see them blow the roof off of the tiny Troubadour a little while ago (read about that here), and then sat down to ask them about their music:

Claire Gallagher: Alrighty, who’s who? What are your names and what  instruments do you play?

Jazmine Giovanni: vocals

Lee Landrum: lead guitar

Andrew James: bass

Blake Paulson: drums

Greg Pajer: guitar

 

CG: Where are you from?  How did the band come together?

JG: [I was] born in Honolulu, but I grew up as a kind of gypsy

LL: Grew up in Yuba City, California, but left at 17 for LA.

AJ: Studio City is my home

BP: Edina, Minnesota

GP: Sacramento

The Hush: As a band, we’ve been together almost two years.  Blake and Jazmine have known each other since their Berklee [College of Music] days. We (the guys) all met while working on another project ’07 through ‘08.  Done with that in December, we weren’t ready to walk away from that something special in the room.  We wrote new tunes and started searching for a singer.  Blake brought in Jazmine (April ’09) and everything clicked.  We’ve been recording / performing / writing continuously since.

CG: Who are some of your biggest influences, musical and other?

TH: We all come from such diverse musical backgrounds that our collaboration is a very well-rounded effort.  We all draw upon such vastly different resources from within ourselves yet we’ve come together for a very focused endeavor.  Our musical influences range from bands like Muse, Nine Inch Nails and Queen to today’s pop music by producers like Max Martin and Dr. Luke.  We try to implement a danceability in a modern rock format.  You know, people love to dance and that’s not lost on us.  As far as other influences, I think, as artists, we are very affected by what surrounds us.  Film, art, literature – these all feed into the arsenal of tricks.  Anything that creates a mood inspires music to convey that mood.

CG: Did growing up where you did influence your music at all?  Do you feel a kinship with your hometown?

JG: I can’t speak for the boys on this question so I’ll go it alone.  This question is tough for me because as mentioned, I grew up as a kind of gypsy.  I had the opportunity to travel a great deal of this country growing up and don’t necessarily hold tight to where I spent my childhood.  Honestly, those were just places to suffer through school and plot my life.  New York and Los Angeles – those are home: the central core of the art scene in America, and truly, they inspire a great deal of my work. There are a thousand stories to tell at any given moment.

CG: What bands do you think you sound like, if any?

TH: The beauty of what our band brings to the table is that we don’t sound like any other band, but we are always conscious of remaining commercial and current.  You can always make the inevitable comparison to any other female-fronted rock band from Paramore to Evanescence, but that does us all a huge injustice. They do their thing. We do ours. It’s different but all relevant, commercial modern rock. That being said, Paramore, Maroon Five and Incubus are valid reference points for fans wanting to know more about our sound.

CG: What do you think you would be doing right now if you weren’t a musician? What did you want to be when you were a kid?

JG: I’m sure the boys can vouch that I make one hell of an argument.  I’d probably be an entertainment attorney – I studied music business in college and gave that some consideration.  However, I remember distinctly knowing that performing was my love and that nothing else would do.  My mother took me to an audition for the opera Madama Butterfly* to [try out for the role] ‘Trouble’, Butterfly’s two-year-old blonde son.  I got the part and, with a wig and a tiny suit, I found bliss on the stage. I never gave any real weight to any other profession.

CG: What has been a personal high and a personal low about your musical career so far? Any particular moments of awesomeness or embarrassing blunders?

TH: All of us have had some very awesome moments.  We’re all musicians that have toured, performed and recorded with some amazing artists and producers. No blunders to speak of…here’s to continuing that streak.

CG: So what’s the story behind your band name?  How did it come about?

JG: I come from a theatrical background and the name THE HUSH really evolved from that.  There’s a split moment before the start of our set (or any production, for that matter) where the entire house quiets down in anticipation.  Of course then we come crashing in and THE HUSH falls over the crowd in a haze of musical fury. But the name comes from that last moment before there’s no escape.

the_hush2

CG: Awesome. So, what is next for THE HUSH?

TH: [We are] plotting our next move as we speak.  We finish up three new songs in the studio next week and we’re planning on booking a tour shortly after. Right now we are continuously writing and evolving the last stages of what this project is on track to do – keep the fans rocking and thoroughly entertained.

If you missed it before, check out a review of their set at the Troubadour here.  Once you do that, pick up their debut EP Scene of the Crime, and keep an eye out for their next show near you!

 

*Madame Butterfly:  Does the name Pinkerton sound familiar?