Buzznet Exclusive: 21 Questions With Travis Clark Of We The Kings!
What is the craziest thing a fan has ever done to you?
There are so many crazy things but I’d say a top 5 moment was when 3 girls laid under our tour bus tires in the middle of the night refusing to leave until we came out! We were all sleeping and our driver came into the bunk area and asked if he should call the cops…we said no and went outside in our pajamas to say hi
What’s it like touring with the bands This Century and Crash the Party?
Haven’t toured with them ever before so it will be nice to meet the guys and check out their live shows!
What other bands/artists would like to tour with?
Our dream would be to tour with Coldplay or Foo Fighters or Blink 182 or The Killers or Jason Mraz or Jay Z or Lil Wayne or Metallica….haha there are just so many bands that we’d like to tour with in the future!
What inspires you to do what you do?
Our inspiration comes from the “3 F’s”…Family, Friends and fans. They are what keeps us motivated to wake up every single day before a show and play our hearts out.
What advice would you give to fellow bands?
It’s tough for bands these days…it’s all about image now, unfortunately, and less about music. So, outside of that, my advice would be to connect with your fans in a way that nobody else does and keep that connection strong because they will be who keeps your band afloat in years to come.
Travis, I understand that the song “Just Keep Breathing” is about you being bullied as a child. How did you deal with this situation and what is the message you want your fans to take away?
I was bullied my entire childhood…well actually most of my entire life. I wished when I was younger that there was a song that would make me feel better after a long day of ridicule, so I finally wrote JKB all about my personal experiences and what it took for me to get through it all. Getting bullied made me the person I am today so it don’t want to say that I regret it…but I do hope that every day I wake up, I inspire someone to stop bullying and stand up for someone else to end all the hate.
How do you hope to impact your fans?
I want our fans to remember us as a band who cared deeply for their fans and who made someone’s world a little brighter.
What’s your most memorable show and why?
I remember every show we’ve ever played because of my journal…but I’d have to say one of my favorite shows was when we played in June of 2010 at the Tampa Bay Rays (out hometown MLB team) baseball game for 34,000 people and after we were presented with the key to our hometown of Bradenton, Florida!
What do you feel is the band’s greatest accomplishment to date?
Today is our biggest accomplishment to date…and tomorrow will be our biggest accomplishment and then the day after and so for and so on. Being a band that has put out 4 albums, toured 7 straight years through over 25 countries, and who are still making music for the fans that granted us our success. That is a true accomplishment.
What has been the band’s biggest challenge/obstacle as you continue to progress in the music industry?
Our biggest challenge was getting off of our record label and deciding to do our latest album completely by ourselves. It ended up being the greatest decision of our career. Somewhere Somehow (our latest album) in it’s first week, sold more records than ANY of the other 3 albums that we put out on a record label prior. All thanks to our incredible and supportive fan base.
What do you do when you find yourself feeling homesick?
I usually Skype with my girlfriend or family members! My favorite thing to do is Skype my sister and see my 2 year old nephew, Chase. He is seriously the cutest thing in the world and when he says, “Uncle Twwavissss!!!” It removes all homesick vibes that I was feeling.
How did it feel to see that your “Somewhere Somehow” album, held the number 11 spot on the iTunes album chart?
It actually held at #2 during it’s first week sandwiched between Beyoncé’s explicit album and her censored album. At one point it beat out both her albums and was #1 on ALL of iTunes!! To say the least, we were on the floor freaking out!
Would you say your music style has changed since you began? If so, what has influenced those changes?
Of course it has, we’ve tried to give every album we’ve done a different perspective… We also try to grow with our fans during the process so that the music and lyric still relates and connects with them.
Which famous musicians do you look up to? Why?
Paul McCartney is one of the most humble famous musicians I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. The Beatles are a staple in the music world so to meet him and tell him that “Blackbird” was the very first song my mom ever taught me on guitar was the best thing ever. And yes, I’ll admit it, I was extremely star struck!)
Do you get nervous before a performance?
Every single show I get nervous. It’s what makes this so exciting even to this day! We want the crowd to have the best concert of their lives and we get nervous before in hopes to exceed their expectations.
How do you handle mistakes during a performance?
We just laugh it off and continue playing. Most of the time nobody even realizes that we messed up, but even if they did, at least they know we’re human and not lip-syncing haha!
What are some of your favorite songs to perform live?
Any song that has a sing-a-long in it is always a fun one to perform. Also, songs that have been on the radio that everyone in the crowd knows are fun to perform!
What advice would you give to beginners who are nervous?
You’ll always be nervous…but eventually it will be a “comfortable nervous” where the anxiety makes you want to be the best you can be.
What’s it like to have a relationship while you’re on tour?
It has it’s ups and downs but luckily we are at a point in our career where we are able to fly out the girls to cool cities and countries and experience the “vacation” with them! Other than that, it’s a lot of phone calls and skyping! Also, when you do eventually see the other person, you’re so excited that you just want to hug and squeeze them to death!
Do you guys have any other hobbies besides, obviously, making music?
3/5s of us have YouTube vlogs that keep us pretty busy. We also like to stay fit at the gym and cook healthy food/juice! The entire band is a huge fan of sports so we go to as many games as we can of the teams that we like!
Why did you pick your band name? How did you form? Why did you decide to play the genre or genres you do?
Google has an incredible answer to this question…but we named the band after the middle school that we all met and started learning music, King Middle School. I started the band in order to get a girlfriend…I guess that’s probably why most guys start bands…but we never knew that all of this would out of it! We grew up loving Blink 182, Green Day and other bands in the pop rock genre so I think we just kind of assumed that we would start THAT kind of band.
Be sure to catch We The Kings on their upcoming ‘The Art Of Tour’ coming to a city near you!