AN INTERVIEW WITH GRANDMA'S BOYS
Grandma’s favorite boys have just released their EP, Oakley! The four piece from Louisville, Kentucky consists of members Evan Harris, Oakley Wariner, Justin Deener, and Noah Colston with soon to be new drummer, Ian Gordon. After some instrument and name changes, the once two piece of Evan on ukulele and Oakley on drums called Pizza Life Crew, has evolved into Grandma’s Boys. Grandma’s Boys uses new members, Justin and Noah, to capture a surf, pop, rock vibe that can make the oldest bones get up and dance. With the release of Oakley, you now have your perfect summer soundtrack.
EVEN THOUGH EVAN AND OAKLEY HAVE BEEN PERFORMING THE GRANDMA’S BOYS SONGS FOR ABOUT A YEAR, YOU JUST RELEASED YOUR FIRST EP, OAKLEY. LET’S TALK ABOUT THAT!
Evan: We’ve been playing so long we had to put out something. We picked three bangers to go on it. Noah rips and rolls on “Craft Mac” and “Velcro Shoes.” And we had to get the rap verse out of the way so people will know there may be more rap verses to come.
Oakley: You know, my favorite thing about almond butter… is it’s just so good.
LET’S TALK ABOUT THE NAME OF THE EP.
Oakley: Yeah, and how I had no consent in this naming.
Evan: Our drummer is such a narcissist that he thinks the EP is named after him. No just kiddin.’ We named it Oakley since Oakley is leaving the band for religious reasons and we wanted something to commemorate his time in the band. We’re sad to see him go but we’re happy we have Ian as the replacement. Ian is an underrated drummer who brings a lot of positive energy and he is also a big fan of our music and has been nothing but supportive. When we think about all the drummers we could have picked, because there are so many talented ones, Ian has the heart that we need.
Justin: He’s good at washing dishes.
Oakley: He’s good at waxing brows and making people pleasurable.
Evan: Ian is as good at playing drums as he is washing dishes… and Ian is a fucking beast at washing dishes.
Noah: I’d like to add, out of the drummers that we could have had... Ian knows all the songs.
Evan: I wanted Ian as a drummer so when we go on the road we can play Magic.
WHAT ARE YOU GUYS GOING TO DO WITH YOUR DOWN TIME ON TOUR?
Justin: Play D&D.
Evan: Think about how much we miss Oakley.
Ian: Play Magic.
Noah: Internet Chess.
EVAN AND OAKLEY, HOW WAS THE TRANSITION FROM THE TWO OF YOU IN PIZZA LIFE CREW TO THE FOUR MEMBERS OF GRANDMA’S BOYS?
Evan: At first I didn’t think we’d get Justin to play bass because he doesn’t play bass, he’s more of just a really awesome guitar player. But he came around to liking it.
Oakley: He continues the tradition by playing guitar on bass.
Evan: The transition was really smooth because I had a bunch of new material and I said “before we even work on the new stuff, I’m gonna pick up guitar.” My mom really misses me playing ukulele, so does my grandma.
Justin: And we wrote all the parts in one night.
Evan: Yeah, it was real easy to come up with parts with Justin. Me, Justin, and Oakley have been playing music together since high school so the chemistry for us, it’s not if we can write music but when do we need to do it.
WHAT ABOUT ADDING NOAH TO THE BAND SINCE YOU WERE ALL ALREADY SOLIDIFIED AS FRIENDS?
Justin: Well go back to the first question, he rips and rolls. And he’s great at music theory.
Evan: Noah has a real good taste in music. Since being my roommate he’s put me on a lot of new music. And Noah, you’re jazz trained right?
Noah: Don’t put that in the interview.
YOU GUYS RECORDED THE EP RIGHT HERE IN THIS VERY HOUSE. HOW WAS THAT?
Justin: Noah fell asleep.
Oakley: That was a solid moment.
Justin: Noah fell asleep with the headphones on while everyone was playing on full blast.
Noah: Yeah, that’s true. It went well but everything in the house was completely entangled in wires. It worked! We got three songs, we had a fourth song but it was cursed so it didn’t make it on there.
Evan: It’ll be on the album though.
Noah: It’s a cursed song… it might be on the album.
AS A BAND YOU ALL SEEM TO AGREE THAT IT’S IMPORTANT TO LEAVE THE AUDIENCE FEELING HOPEFUL. THE LYRICS HAVE A BIT OF A MELANCHOLY FEEL WHILE THE MUSIC IS ALWAYS DANCY. HOW DO YOU ALL COMBINE THE TWO?
Evan: The secret is, whenever you write the chords out you have to have an equal amount of sad chords, minor ones, and happy chords, major ones. That’s what I literally always do.
Justin: I think it’s important that if the lyrics are really sad to make it dancey cause dancing is exercise and exercise gives you endorphins and makes you feel happy.
Evan: I feel like the majority of our songs aren’t sad, or if they are sad they have a positive message.
Justin: Like “Spaghetti on the Wall.”
Evan: That’s the cursed song.
WHAT IS THE BEST PART ABOUT BEING A PERFORMER IN LOUISVILLE OR FAVORITE PART ABOUT THE LOUISVILLE SCENE?
Noah: Lydia House, but it’s gone now so there’s not even a reason to be a musician in Louisville.
Oakley: I’d say the best part of waking up is Folgers- the best part of the Louisville scene is the beginner friendliness. There’s very little judgement towards new bands.
Ian: I have something similar along those lines, I really like that there are shows with a lot of different genres and you can experience a lot of different kinds of shit. You can experience people doing performance art at a hardcore show and then a rap show at the same place.
Justin: I think my favorite part is, that no matter what genre it is, they still have that Kentucky accent. No matter what genre it is, it’s country.
Evan: One of my favorite things, like Ian said, are the mixed genre shows and how they can bring different crowds together. And plus the bands here are honestly really good; a lot of them are totally slept on but one day they’ll get their props. It’s really interesting to be in the scene with so many really good and unique bands.
ANYONE HAVE ANYTHING THEY WANT TO SAY BEFORE THIS IS OVER?
Justin: Tell your grandma you love her.
Evan: If anyone reading this is a high school principal, contact us. We do proms.
Oakley: I quit.
Noah: What we just said was ridiculous bullshit.
Ian: We don’t interview well.