Senior Writer Jesse Richman had the chance to catch up with Chad Gilbert at SXSW for a talk on What’s Eating Gilbert. Jesse and Chad discussed full band shows, Violently Happy Records, a possible full-length, and more. Check it all out below!
So Chad, how are these first couple of shows as a band going?
They have been awesome, man. It’s really cool sort of starting over. I’ve released a bunch of EPs over the past three or four years, but I never really promoted it until these last couple of months. It’s really fun playing for people who have never seen or heard you. I’ve been used to playing shows where everyone knows the words and everything. So it’s cool; it’s refreshing seeing the faces of people when they’re like, “Oh, cool!” Because it’s different than what they were expecting. It’s cool. It’s really fun. I love it. I love playing music. Instead of being at home, relaxing on my couch, I’m in a van touring SXSW, you know? I love music.
You did a few dates with Candy Hearts and Pentimento…
Not yet. El Paso in two days. And Allison Weiss too. I’m excited to play with all these people, you know? We’re all young, new bands that I think will all be really popular in the next couple years.
I know you worked with Candy Hearts in the studio. How was that?
It was fun man. Mariel is an amazing songwriter. They’re a band that have barely toured, they haven’t toured as much as a lot of other bands. I believe in her songwriting skills and I believe in that band.
You just started an imprint on Bridge 9, Violently Happy, with Candy Hearts being the first band signed to that. Was it that you wanted to start an imprint and thought they’d be great for it? Or was it, “I love Candy Hearts. I need to do something for them. I need to start an imprint”?
It was inspired by them, in the sense that I heard them and I believed in them and I started bringing them to all these other labels and the labels were like, “Oh. They’re cool.” But the thing about it is, when you believe in a band from the beginning, you have to get them when they’re in their… when they’re not developed. In the sense that no big label is going to go see Candy Hearts at a small punk rock bar and see a future. Me being in a band that used to play those bars, can go there and be like, “Man. They have songs.” That’s what’s most important. She is cool. Her lyrics are cool. The bands cool. I saw that and other people didn’t get that. I was like, “You know, I would promote the hell out of this band more than anybody.” So I’m like, “Why don’t I just put it out.” Chris, who’s a friend of mine at Bridge 9, and we had worked together on that Tip Of The Iceberg, New Found Glory EP, that was a success. I was like, “Why don’t we just do this together?”