India isn’t really known for its rock music. What made you come here for a tour?
The awesome thing about our job is that touring helps us realise what people around us have to offer, and vice versa. India is a beautiful country, with a great heritage. We want to build a fan base here and see what it has to offer.
Do you guys know much about India and Indian music?
(Chuckles) I don’t know as much as I thought I did, before arriving here. But yeah, in Mississippi, I had many Indian friends in college. I’ve even had Indian cuisine, and heard a lot of Indian music. In fact, some of my favourite bands have used the tabla and sitar in their music, and I love how well the instruments mix with rock ‘n’ roll.
So what’s your set here going to be like?
It’ll have a few of our old hits like ‘Addicted’ and ‘18 days’, and some from our next album, which will be released sometime later this month. We’ll also play a few covers of bands who have influenced us, like Led Zepplin, The Beatles and Pink Floyd.
You have opened for Nickelback and Puddle of Mudd. What did you learn about being rockstars from them?
(Chuckles) The one thing they told us was that you should never drink alcohol before a show, even though it may sound good to you. (Laughs) I’ve learnt from Paul McCartney that drinking and writing is one thing but drinking and playing doesn’t really work.
We’ve also learnt a lot about how to deal with attention and success from the bands. They’ve been around for more than 10 years and they’ve managed their backstage lives so well.
You guys have a ‘radio ready sound’. Do you think it will work with the Indian audiences?
Yeah, for sure, because our sound appeals to just about anybody, from young kids to older people. We’ve designed our music that way. Even our lyrics are about day-to-day lives. Our first album was written when we were regular guys with regular jobs. We’ve never forced our lyrics and people have been able to relate to that.
Your biggest hit, ‘Addicted’ was about a girl who was a horrible girlfriend but was sexually addictive. Do your present girlfriends get scared that they’d end up in a song?
(Laughs) Yeah, always! Even that girl’s parents heard the song and weren’t proud of it. But you know what, good or bad, most women, I think, would be happy that a song has been written on them!
You’ve been travelling a lot since your first album released. Has that impacted your writing style?
Definitely. We are the same people with the same roots but we’ve been all over the USA and that’s definitely enriched our lives. On the new album, you’ll have the normal love songs and hate songs, but there are areas we never touched upon before, like being away at war.
That must have been inspired by your recent tour to the Middle East to perform for the US troops?
Yeah, that tour made us appreciate who we are, what freedom means and what our troops are doing for us, so we can sleep at night. It had a big impact on us and we just wanted to reciprocate in our own small way. Also, the song had a lot to do with how we were feeling too — since we were away from home for quite some time too.
Have you seen anything in India yet that may inspire you to write a song?
Yeah man, we’ve noticed how everyone has a smile on their faces, no matter what their situation is. Whether rich or poor, everyone’s really happy here. I even saw a family of four on a motor scooter, and they just seemed to be happy to be alive. That’s pretty inspiring.
Ever fancy writing a song on Indian women?
(Laughs) Absolutely, man! You guys have the most beautiful women in the world. I’ve been in awe ever since we came here. We all feel like such creeps looking at the girls, but we just can’t help it!