Artist Interview: 1-on-1 with Paper Route

The band that I am hanging out with today has something special for you to hear.  They come from Nashville, Tennessee but sound like they come from an underground European nightclub.  Bringing an ambient meets techno sound to the stage, while leaving room for interpretation, they force your finger to hit repeat after every track.  Having found these guys on MySpace while just searching around, I am excited to be able to speak with them today.  Sit with me as introduce you to Paper Route.

Where did you come up with the name Paper Route?

We all had paper routes as kids and it reminded us of simpler times when we were young and naive, growing up in the Midwest and spent most of our day daydreaming.

Where did you guys all meet?

Andy, JT and I met in college and then we met Gavin through a mutual friend in Nashville.

How long have you been performing?

We’ve been performing for three years now.

Describe your genre in one word.


Tell me about that album cover.

That was done in the 11th hour by JT.  It was originally intended to be on the back of the album, but it really seemed to represent “absence” the best.  There are a lot of sounds on the record, so we thought we’d balance it with something simple, visually.

Where do you guys get inspiration for new tracks?

Oftentimes, we’ll experiment with making new sounds and then songs will evolve from those sounds naturally.  I usually take long breaks from writing, so when it rains, it pours, typically.

Is there a ringleader in the band?

Yes.  All of us.

Who does all your graphic design work?

JT does the graphic design for us.  He is quite a talented visual artist.  We do as much between the four of us as we possibly can.  I think we are control freaks.

What are your thoughts on MySpace?

I don’t think too much about it, but it is a good way to check out new bands and also helped us to develop a fanbase before we ever started touring.

Are you on Twitter?

Yes we are!  As a band and as individuals.  Our band is @paperroute

Where can I get some Paper Route merchandise?

Either at our shows or online at  I recommend coming to our shows!

Tell me about your new album.

Absence was a difficult album to make, and it took a long time, but we are extremely proud of it.  We made it ourselves; we did the artwork, recorded it, produced it, even mixed a handful of songs ourselves.  90% of it was recorded in my bedroom and bathroom.

What are your thoughts on the death of Michael Jackson?

It is sad that he died before he could “come back”, although I’m not sure how much of a comeback he could’ve made.  Thriller was one of the first albums I owned, so of course he played a big part in my personal musical development.

Do you guys have jobs outside of music?

Not really.  I do some mixing / producing when I have time at my studio.  JT does some art stuff here and there.  Andy likes to rehab houses and Gavin likes to house-sit.  We aren’t home long enough to get other jobs at this point.

You are a pretty substantial tour right now.  Do you guys tour like that often?

We tour as much as we can.  We’ll probably do 140 shows this year.  The routing is what makes it manageable usually.  If the drives aren’t too bad, we can survive a lot longer on the road.

How can I get you guys to Indianapolis?

We just need you to spread word about us to as many people as possible until there is an undeniable demand there to see us play.  Then our booking agent will set something up with a promoter there and then next thing you know we’re in Indianapolis playing for you and all your followers!  Let’s make this happen ASAP.

What are you drinking on stage?

Water.  I would drink Vitamin Water if there was an unlimited supply.  I drink Coke after the show because I love carbonation and caffeine so much.

What should someone expect when they come to a show if they have never seen you perform before?

We have probably twenty instruments on stage, and we will try to use them all.  I think we are pretty energetic, and we give it 110% every single night.  You will not regret it.  Everyone says our live show is much better than the album, and if the mood hits us right, we’ll do an acoustic set afterwards in our trailer.

Who are some of your biggest influences?

(Thinks) Bjork, Radiohead, Sigur Ros, Arcade Fire; just to name a few.

What is your favorite venue to play?

I love Schuba’s in Chicago.  I also like Exit/In in Nashville.  We are planning on playing the Ryman in November, and I’m pretty sure that will be all of our favorites immediately!

What is the biggest crowd that you have ever played for?

We played for about 8,000 people in LA last summer opening for Paramore.

The smallest?

We’ve played for four people before.  That’s always a humbling experience, but you can’t sing the blues ’til you pay your dues!

What is it like to work with Universal Motown?

It has been amazing to work with Universal Motown!  To their credit, they gave us total artistic freedom on our very first album.  They trust us, and we in turn trust them a lot.  We know a ton of bands and we have yet to meet one that has as an amazing label experience as we’ve had.  We must be the exception to the rule, because we have the freedom that most artists don’t get unless they are on an indie.

How do you guys know Copeland?

We knew them through Matt Goldman, a producer in Atlanta.  They asked us to tour with them earlier this year and we really hit it off well with those guys.  They were so much fun.

Who is the most fun to share a stage with?

Well I just mentioned Copeland.  Phantom Planet was a LOT of fun.  So was Paramore.  Honestly this last tour with Audrye Sessions was a blast too.  Oh and Brooke Waggoner and her band.  We’ve toured with tons of really cool bands.

Where do you see yourselves in five years?

Putting out our third or forth album.  Hopefully our fanbase will be solid still and we will not be stagnant as artists.  We want to continually grow and challenge ourselves and our listeners.

What do you wan to be remembered for when this is all said and done?

I want to prove the existence of Heaven with mere sound.

I always let the artist get the last word.  Go.

Paper Route is for lovers, fighters, doubters, believers, sinners and saints.  We welcome you all and we can’t wait to see you in Indianapolis.