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GRAMMY Museum Releases Two Songwriters Hall Of Fame Programs From Archive

"Legends In The Round"

Photo: Lester Cohen/WireImage

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GRAMMY Museum Releases Two Songwriters Hall Of Fame Programs From Archive

Featuring iconic and contemporary songwriters sharing stories about their craft, the programs celebrate the 10-year partnership between the two music organizations

GRAMMYs/Jun 10, 2020 - 10:00 pm

The GRAMMY Museum continues to roll out exciting and exclusive content online while its physical doors are closed until further notice in light of COVID-19. Tomorrow, June 11, the Museum will release two Songwriters Hall of Fame programs from its archive, including "Legends In The Round" and "Chart Toppers: Today's Star-Making Hit Songwriters/Producers." 

True to its title, "Legends In The Round" brought together songwriting giants Hal David, Lamont Dozier, Mac Davis, Nickolas Ashford, and Valerie Simpson for a discussion on from Oct. 19, 2010, moderated by GRAMMY and Oscar -winning composer/songwriter and SHOF inductee Paul Williams.

"Chart Toppers: Today's Star-Making Hit Songwriters/Producers" engaged contemporary pop songwriters on Oct. 18, 2017 for a discussion of the craft, including late songwriter/producer busbee, plus Dave Bassett, Warren "Oak" Felder, and Teddy Geiger. The conversation was moderated by acclaimed music journalist and author, Shirley Halperin, Executive Editor of Music at Variety. You can read more about the intimate discussion at the SHOF website.

The timing of tomorrow's release is to honor of the original date the 2020 SHOF Induction & Awards Gala was scheduled before being postponed to next June. The exclusive content offering also celebrates the 10-year partnership between the two music organizations.

Both programs feature these iconic and contemporary songwriters sharing behind-the-scenes stories about their craft and unique collaborations. For more information, visit www.grammymuseum.org.

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Relive The Music, Fashion & Excitement Of Outside Lands 2022 In This Photo Gallery
The Linda Lindas perform at Outside Lands on Saturday.

Photo: Alive Coverage

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Relive The Music, Fashion & Excitement Of Outside Lands 2022 In This Photo Gallery

Experience a taste of Outside Lands 2022 with this photo gallery and get lost in the musical woods of Golden Gate Park.

GRAMMYs/Aug 9, 2022 - 07:46 pm

Over 200,000 people attended the annual Outside Lands music and arts festival in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park Aug. 5-7. Over three days and on six stages, attendees — many of whom donned ‘90s and early aughts-inspired attire or their colorful festival best — were treated to a wide variety of dance music, rap, rock and indie acts.

The festival featured headliners 
SZAGreen Day, Post Malone and Kali Uchis, in addition to dozens of DJs, artists and bands. In addition to music, Outside Lands offered extensive food and drink options (a nod to San Francisco’s wide-ranging culinary scene), as well as a cannabis marketplace and consumption area. 

In the below photo gallery, revisit Outside Lands 2022 if you were there — and if you weren't, enjoy the sights of San Francisco and keep your ear to the ground for next year’s lineup.

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ReImagined At Home: Netta Gives MC Hammer's '90s Classic "U Can't Touch This" A Modern-Day Makeover
Netta

Photo: Courtesy of Netta

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ReImagined At Home: Netta Gives MC Hammer's '90s Classic "U Can't Touch This" A Modern-Day Makeover

MC Hammer's GRAMMY-winning hit "U Can't Touch This" gets a playful update in this imaginative homage from pop singer/songwriter Netta.

GRAMMYs/Aug 9, 2022 - 05:03 pm

Born in January 1993, singer/songwriter and looping artist Netta wasn't even alive when MC Hammer released his classic "U Can't Touch This" in 1990.

But in this episode of ReImagined at Home, Netta puts her signature stamp on a cover performance of "U Can't Touch This," paying homage to the original with an equally joyful — and colorfully revamped — rendition that's brimming with her own infectious personality. 

Atop a bed made of netting, Netta sits suspended some 10 or 15 feet in the air, her microphone suspended from the ceiling and BOSS tabletop looper at her feet. With a big smile on her face, she adds layer after layer of melody and harmony to create a lush, danceable and modern track that's still recognizable as "U Can't Touch This."

Toward the tail end of her performance, Netta also tips her hat to another aspect of the song's history, singing "She's a very kinky girl" over the beat. That's a line from Rick James' "Super Freak," which is prominently sampled in MC Hammer's original recording of "U Can't Touch This." (When "U Can't Touch This" won the GRAMMY for Best Rhythm & Blues Song in 1991, both MC Hammer and James took home trophies. The song also won Best Solo Rap Performance.)

As a star who first rose to fame when she won the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 — repping her home country of Israel — Netta is no stranger to cover performances. During her stint on HaKokhav HaBa, Israel's televised national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest, she won fans over with cover performances of artists like Kesha, the Spice Girls and David Guetta.

Since winning the big contest with her own original song, "Toy," Netta has been steadily mounting her personality-packed, harmony-laden, signature brand of electropop. She'll continue to build that vision with her next song, "Playground Politica," set for release on August 31. 

In the meantime, press play on the video above to watch Netta's spin on "U Can't Touch This," and keep checking back to GRAMMY.com for more episodes of ReImagined at Home. 

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Meet DOMi & JD Beck, The First Signees To Anderson .Paak's New Label, APESHIT
DOMi & JD Beck

Photo: Tehillah De Castro

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Meet DOMi & JD Beck, The First Signees To Anderson .Paak's New Label, APESHIT

The first musicians to sign to Anderson .Paak’s new label are taking both the jazz and hip-hop worlds by storm with their stylistic diversity. At 22 and 19, they're also among a new generation of jazz lovers.

GRAMMYs/Aug 9, 2022 - 04:09 pm

The Jazz Age is almost a century gone, yet a new generation of jazz virtuosos are proving that the genre is as relevant as ever.

DOMi & JD BECK's debut album, NOT TiGHT, is a rapid fire coalescence of keys and drums that is both studied and incredibly contemporary. At 22 and 19, respectively, Domitille Degalle (keys) and Beck (drums) are bringing a distinct Gen Z attitude and awareness into the world of jazz and its environs. 

"We just do what we do and we have fun doing it," the band tells GRAMMY.com via email. 

The two have been playing together since 2018. In that time, they've served as a backing band for Thundercat (with an occasional guest appearance from Ariana Grande) and have performed on sessions for celebrated instrument manufacturers like Nord and Zildjian. Now, Domi and Beck are the first signees to Anderson .Paak’s new label, APESHIT, an imprint of the paragon jazz outfit Blue Note.

Such endorsements demonstrate the duo's stylistic diversity — an uncanny ability to hop between J Dilla-esque grooves (Beck spent many years practicing Dilla beats) and bebop-velocity runs at unconventional meters like 7/8, even when vocalists like Mac Demarco and .Paak are singing.

Reaching this adept point took a journey for Domi and Beck, both individually and side-by-side. That journey began for both at a very young age.

Domi was born in Metz, France and by age five was studying music at Conservatoire Régional du Grand Nancy. She then went on to Conservatoire de Paris followed by Berklee College of Music in Boston where she graduated in 2020. Domi first began playing drums at the age 2 before switching to keys at 3 years old.

"I would love to be crazy on drums. But I guess I don’t need to anymore, since I have JD!" she tells GRAMMY.com.

Beck also started lessons around the age of five, enrolling in various music programs throughout his preteen years around his hometown of Dallas. By 10, Beck was playing with Cleon Edwards of Erykah Badu’s band, and Robert "Sput" Searight of Snarky Puppy was his mentor.

Around the same time, Searight discovered Domi via social media videos filmed by her peers at Berklee (some of which now have hundreds of thousands of views). In 2018, Searight invited her and Beck to play a jam session at the NAMM show in Anaheim. 

The musical bond was there from the start, and soon after Domi joined Beck in Dallas to play Badu’s birthday followed by a few days of jamming. Of course, those jams were posted to Instagram, and with their sudden and massive increase in followers (one of which was Anderson .Paak) they became DOMi & JD Beck.

But grabbing and keeping the internet’s attention in the present era requires more than sheer talent. That’s where their short and sometimes vulgar meme-ready sense of humor comes in, and it touches everything from their social media to their website. 

Each song from NOT TiGHT has its own post on Instagram with a visual animation from their whimsically colored photoshoot, and within each caption lives some dank-meme content. In the post for track 14, entitled "SNiFF," they share that the original title was "u can sniff my butt." The post for "TAKE A CHANCE" with .Paak only gets the caption "bunch of s—."

Domi and Beck’s website expands upon this jejune approach with a narrative that is equal parts confusing, intriguing and hilarious. 

Apparently, Domi is a saxophone prodigy and the only living theoretical physicist. Beck is a sheep investigator who has devoted his life to smooth jazz, and together they hosted bodybuilding masterclasses on TikTok back in 2018. 

It’s not difficult to discern the intentional inaccuracies among these statements, but every word is authentic to Domi and Beck’s uproarious give-and-take.  

"Most music isn’t about music anymore. It’s just used as a tool for money and selling bulls—. Hopefully we can help change that," the band says. "It’s also fun reading all the social media debates arguing into which genre or style we should be categorized! It’s very entertaining."

If people are arguing about their music on social media, the internet generation is clearly on board. The album feeds those genre-debates with its wide-ranging aural palette. 

Much of NOT TiGHT is pure instrumentalism, demonstrating the high-speed chemistry that Domi and Beck have shared for years. On "SPACE MOUNTAiN," it feels as if the two are trying to literally trade off sixteenth-note hits of drums and and keys. It's a classic call-and-response format, performed at the fastest and most micro level possible.

With .Paak and Blue Note on their team, Domi and Beck also enjoy collaborators such as jazz legend Herbie Hancock — a standout entry whose 60-year age difference is inconsequential on "MOON." Domi clearly doesn’t mind passing off some piano-time to Hancock, and the three maintain an uptempo barrage of rhythms and beats that will have jazz students and veterans  transcribing for years to come.

The elevated status of their guest artists doesn’t prevent a musical equilibrium from taking form;  the features evoke the feeling of a hang. "Just vibes" as people their age might say on social media.

Rather, Domi and Beck create space for the vocalists, using their experience serving as a rhythm section for Thundercat to implement restraint without sacrificing sophistication. While Snoop Dogg and Busta Rhymes harbor completely different styles of flow, they align on "PiLOT." The veterans  take direction from Domi and Beck, providing their lyrical input to the duo’s sonic vision.

That dynamic shifts slightly when it’s .Paak’s turn to sing and rap. In those moments it feels more like .Paak is a member of the group as opposed to a featured artist, which makes sense given the hands-on approach he’s taken with Domi, Beck and NOT TiGHT.

 .Paak directed the music video for "TAKE A CHANCE", which the three of them performed live together on "Jimmy Kimmel." .Paak also gave them songwriting credits on the roll-bounce funk tune "Skate" for his GRAMMY-winning project with Bruno Mars, Silk Sonic, the bones of which were an instrumental from Domi and Beck.

"He really believes in us, which is the coolest s— ever," Beck told Okayplayer in August of 2022.

Domi and Beck first met .Paak (whom they refer to as "Andy") in 2019 when they were playing a gig as a part of Thundercat’s band in New Orleans. The three of them remained connected and before long they were working together on NOT TiGHT.

Throughout the process working with .Paak, Domi and Beck never felt discouraged from being authentic in their music and personalities.

"We never dealt with pressure from Andy or the label," they say. "The only pressure we really dealt with was fans always commenting and messaging us, 'Release the album or I will come to your house and murder your family,' but that motivated us to work as much as possible and stay on track."

One hundred years after the Jazz Age the passion for this music remains. Death threats over social media may be Gen Z’s way of expressing it, but  Domi and Beck know the best way to respond is to give even more authentic love to the music:

"We’ll always try to write the best song that we possibly can. If it’s going to be impossible to play live, well,s—; we’ll try."

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How Papa Roach Frontman Jacoby Shaddix Embraced Forgiveness And Perspective To Fuel The Band's Music
Papa Roach (L-R: Jerry Horton, Jacoby Shaddix, Tobin Esperance and Tony Palermo)

Photo: Bryson Roatch

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How Papa Roach Frontman Jacoby Shaddix Embraced Forgiveness And Perspective To Fuel The Band's Music

As Papa Roach embarks on a co-headlining arena tour with Falling In Reverse, frontman Jacoby Shaddix opens up about the healing and rekindled relationships that have helped him — and his band — see continued success 25 years in.

GRAMMYs/Aug 9, 2022 - 03:45 pm

"It's funny," muses Papa Roach frontman Jacoby Shaddix. "I'll be out and about sometimes and people are like, 'Oh, you're still doing this?' I'm like, 'We're about to play in front of 7,000 people tonight. So yeah, I'm still doing this, bro.'"

Papa Roach is one of those bands that might not chart very high on the Billboard Top 200 these days, but that hasn't slowed them down. And frankly, having notched 23 Top 10s and 7 No. 1s on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Airplay chart over their 25-year recording career including "Kill The Noise," which just topped the chart last year — they have proven to be rock mainstays. 

That's further exemplified by their high-energy shows. At 46 years old, Shaddix runs on more adrenaline than many singers half his age. And as he reminds GRAMMY.com, the group routinely plays to thousands of people per night, like on the current Rockzilla tour with co-headliners Falling In Reverse. In terms of touring, Papa Roach is arguably bigger now than they ever have been.

Perhaps that's because Shaddix and his bandmates (bassist Tobin Esperance, guitarist Jerry Horton and drummer Tony Palermo) have always ensured that their music is as raw and real as rock can get — telling tales of emotional turmoil, hope, redemption, and moving forward. That's exactly what's showcased on the group's latest album, Ego Trip

Possibly their most musically diverse album yet, the band's 11th LP — but first on their own label, New Noize finds the group churning hip-hop, alt-pop, and '90s rock influences into their guitar-driven crunch. Fueled by hard-driving riffs and Shaddix's confessional and motivational lyrics, the songs rage, empower, muse, and sometimes even soothe. "Swerve" (with Sueco and FEVER 333) admittedly veers into an "F the haters" rant that Shaddix admits is immature, but "was a little breath of fresh air in the process of making an album that was so deep." 

One thing is for sure: The band's passion to make music that emotionally connects with their fans has not ebbed over time.  

Just after the Rockzilla tour kicked off, Shaddix sat down for a video chat with GRAMMY.com to discuss musical diversity, personal growth, and how life as a father has greatly altered his perspective on life.

These days it seems there are three different Papa Roaches — the hip-hop group, the alt-rock/alt-pop band, and the hard rockers. Will the real Papa Roach please stand up?

I wouldn't say [we have an] identity crisis, we just have these different itches that we scratch. I've always looked up to bands like Faith No More or Queen that really go all over the place with their music. We don't sound anything like those bands, but that path is the one that we're taking where we keep evolving, trying new things, and also finding ways to hybrid all those styles together. Some songs, we're able to mesh all those pieces together, and some songs are a bit more straight-ahead rock.

A lot of your personal lyrics in the past were about "I," and it feels like more recent ones include more about "we" or "you," such as the new "Cut The Line." Do you feel like a mentor or father figure to some of your younger fans?

I've experienced a lot of personal growth over the last 10 or 15 years and really taking accountability for my actions in my life and my lifestyle. Finally putting the bottle down 10 years ago was game-changing for me. 

As I've grown, as a father — I got three kids, and I've raised these boys up — it definitely changes my perspective on how I approach the mic, how I interact with fans, how I am on stage, who I am on a daily basis. It has evolved into a bit more of a mature me, but I still like to cut it up. Because when you're in rock and roll, you're forever young. But I feel like there is a certain level of responsibility that comes along with this thing now. 

It wasn't necessarily the goal, but now that I'm here — and I understand how influential pop culture can be, how influential media can be, how influential music can be — I act accordingly. I want to have a positive impact. The goal for me, if I can distill it down, is not to be iconic or legendary. It is to be inspirational. That's it.

Congratulations on a decade of sobriety.

Yeah, man. I'm stoked, dude. It's a way of life for me.

Was it tough during the pandemic?

You know, I fell off. I was smoking some weed for a while during the pandemic, and I had to clean that up. But I didn't pick the bottle up. I've been cleaned up again for quite some time. 

I will say that in the pandemic I got super fit. And then I got depressed and I got chunky again. Then I got fit again. Then I got a little chunky again. That's how long I was away from the road. I'm trying to take care of my physical fitness, because I'm out here on the road and I got a show to put on — and we're slaying it right now.

"No Apologies" is about forgiving your father for abandoning your family when you were young. He struggled with his own substance abuse problems. What age did you reconnect with him? And have you formed a relationship with him since then?

He left when I was 8, and I saw him one time until I was 22 years old. I finally searched him out when I was 22, and I found that I had two half-sisters. My dad was a war veteran. He came from a broken home himself, and abusive. His life was hell, to be completely honest. He was drafted and went to Vietnam. It just really destroyed my father, and he had demons from that. He really found some peace, I guess — maybe not even peace — in drugs and alcohol. So he continued with that for a lot of years. 

He's still alive. I check in with him every once in a while just to say hey, but recently it's getting to that age where it's like, every time I get a call from one of my sisters, I'm always like, "Is this the call? Your dad's passed." Fortunately, that hasn't happened. 

So I wanted to tell him, "Hey, old man, water under the bridge. I love you, dude, I understand. I understand why you are the way you are. And I hold no grudge, because I've been through my own s— and dealt with my own stuff. Life's too short to carry this thing to the grave." You know, I don't want to be at my father's funeral saying, "I wish I would have told him. I wish I would have cleared the air with him."

I think being a father myself has really softened my heart, because life's too short. I love that old man regardless, and he is where I get a lot of my personality from. I was around him till I was 8 years old, so that's a lot of formative years. There's a lot of Rico Shaddix in me. There's a line in the song: "I can see the you in me and I see double." It's because there's so many personality traits that he and I share, good and bad. 

I wanted him to know that there's no need to say sorry about what went down. Please don't let that be a weight that just keeps dragging you down — because he's got enough demons in his life.

Ego Trip contains the band's first acoustic ballad, "Leave A Light On." Why did you decide to release one of those 11 albums in?

I just felt like, for how dynamic the range of music is on this album, we had to go all the way. We felt like it was time to do something that's straight acoustic, because every time we do some type of acoustic performance, our fans always love it. 

We love stripping down these songs to their purest form. A bunch of things we write start on an acoustic guitar. We're sitting in the room riffing and working on melodies. It's either acoustic guitar or piano, and this one started on the guitar and piano and stayed there. 

Lyrically, it was the right song to do. It's super emotional. I wrote this for my kids as a reminder that as they venture out as young men into this world — and they give themselves to this world, or they get caught up in the drama of this world or their own troubles or struggles — I just need them to know I'm here, no matter what. Never be afraid to come and sit with me and be open and honest. 

I've built a relationship like that with my boys intentionally, so my kids come to me and talk to me about their feelings. I had that from my mother, but I didn't have that from my father, so I just wanted to write a song about that story.

It seems like you also rekindled your relationship with your original drummer, Dave Buckner, as he took part in a celebration of the 20th anniversary of your album Infest two years ago. Had you guys been in touch at all since he departed? Was that the first time you had reunited?

Eight years ago we really started to make a connection, and slowly but surely, these walls have been breaking down. We've become really good, close friends again. We chat regularly. When we got done with the record, I sent him the album. He's a sounding board sometimes. 

I'm grateful that we've been able to build up a friendship again, because it was tough, man. I was hurt and he was hurt. We were all hurt. But it's crazy how life changes and evolves. Time can heal some wounds and forgiveness can heal some wounds — just letting the past be the past and move on. So I'm stoked that Dave is part of my life again.

I've got to tell you this conversation we had a few years ago. It was really healing for the both of us. I've been out here touring for years. I've missed a lot of stuff with my family and my kids. I would quietly follow him on social media, watch his relationship with his son, and watch all these moments that they're sharing. 

He said to me, "Man, it's been kind of tough to sit on the sidelines and watch you guys crush it, but I know that my life where it is now is where I belong. My life is meant to be this way." And I'm like, "It's trippy, because I've sat over here admiring what a beautiful life you've built and this family you've built. This relationship with your son that you've built, and you've been able to enjoy those moments." 

It was a pretty cool experience for both of us to hear we're quietly admiring each other's lives from the sidelines for a while. To be able to get that out across to each other is healing, man.

What is the most personal song on the new album for you?

They're all very personal, but one that I can really relate to and helps keep me grounded is "Ego Trip." It's a story of coming from this old version of myself into this new version of myself, and the realization that I gotta remind myself sometimes to never get high on my own supply. Don't believe your own hype. I used to for so long, and it would just get me in trouble. 

It's a good reminder [that] the ego must be smashed for me to progress and evolve as a man — as a husband, as a father, as a frontman, as a rock star. It sounds counterproductive to being a rock star. But you see all these VH1 documentaries from back in the day when all these dudes were just chasing the dragon. It never ends well. People go down in flames. I got a different story to tell.

"Getting high on your supply" is also a drug metaphor, right?

Absolutely. [Laughs.]

Was it fun doing the "Feel Like Home" video two years back with your and all your bandmates' kids?

These kids wear me out, but they keep me young. My little guy Brixton keeps me on my toes. "Dad, can we go to the skatepark?" "I'd rather just be sitting around on my ass right now, but alright, let's go to the skate park." 

They're definitely a light in my life. I honor and cherish my boys, and I'm so grateful I got the relationship that I do have with them. It's a good one. 

Sometimes I get bummed out. I talked to my older sons when they were probably 14 or 15. I asked them point blank, "Do you resent me for being gone all the time? And not always being here for your birthdays or important things in your lives?" They both looked at me and they're like, "No, we don't resent you, we just get sad sometimes. It makes us sad that you can't be here. But it's something that we can get through, Dad. We get it, we understand it. It's tough on us sometimes." 

That was a good conversation to have, because I didn't want my kids to be resenting me for this career I've had. I think my experience as a kid has really made me a bit more mindful of those scenarios. Plus, I know some other people that are children of rock stars and they have terrible, terrible relationships with their parents. I don't want to have that. That's what I'm going for.

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GRAMMY Camp With Silversun Pickups: 4 Things We Learned About Making It As Independent Artists
L-R: Brian Aubert, Nikki Monninger, Joe Lester and Christopher Guanlao of Silversun Pickups on stage at 2022 GRAMMY Camp in L.A.

Photo: Courtesy of the Recording Academy™️/ Rebecca Sapp, Getty Images© 2022.

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GRAMMY Camp With Silversun Pickups: 4 Things We Learned About Making It As Independent Artists

Angelino alt-rockers Silversun Pickups recently spoke to a captive GRAMMY Camp student audience about their 20 years together, creativity and more.

GRAMMYs/Aug 9, 2022 - 02:52 pm

On day three of 2022 GRAMMY Camp at University of Southern California — the first in-person session since 2019 — Los Angeles alt-rock band Silversun Pickups visited the students to offer insight from their 22 years in the music industry.

They discussed the ebbs and flows of their journey, took questions from the students, and played an acoustic set. The questions were thoughtful and wide-ranging, asking about how they've stayed friends while working together and how L.A. influenced their career.

Read on for four things we learned about and from the "Lazy Eye" band.

You Don't Need It All Figured Out To Start

The band revealed they had no idea what they were doing in the beginning — all they knew was that they wanted to make music and play shows. They got their first gig at a festival run by a New York college radio station after bassist Nikki Monninger sent in a very lo-fi tape she recorded at one of their practice sessions. They ran into an East Los Angeles venue booker there, who offered them their second gig, beginning a run of several years playing the time slots no one else wanted to — joking that they'd play bars when they weren't even open. They were eager to play, even though they were still figuring out their sound and their identity as a band.

Monninger affirms that these early shows really helped them find cohesion as a band, which made them feel prepared for the bigger opportunities that would come later. As they began to grow a local following, they realized people were passing around bootlegs of their sets, because they didn't have anything to sell themselves — so maybe it was time to record some music and make a band tee to sell at shows. "We were just thinking about the music first," Monninger said.

Once they found themselves in a recording studio, it took them time to figure out how to translate the emotion and energy of their live sets to a record. The first of many great questions from the audience, one student asked if their transition into the studio as a live act was weird. "Yes!" frontman Brian Aubert exclaimed. "It took a lot to make the recording sound like how we felt when we play."

Similarly to their journey to sound good live, the recording process also took a lot of learning and trying and failing and trying again. An essential part of the equation was finding producers who really knew their craft, to help them learn the tricks of the trade as well. For their last album, 2019's Widow's Weeds, they linked up with legendary Nirvana and Garbage producer, GRAMMY winner Butch Vig, which they felt really brought their sound to the next level.

If You Need To Make Art, Make It — Whether Or Not It Makes You Money

Aubert recommended that if you're a creative person "that needs to get this stuff out of you," to find a way to act on your creativity — without having to depend on it to support you at first. He said it helps to compartmentalize your art and how you make money, so there isn't intense pressure to make art that is financially successful, as that can be very creatively stifling.

"We thought we were successful when it didn't cost us anything to be in a band. It just kinda happened," he said. Monninger added, "Try to create your life where you don't have debt. We weren't living large, we were just trying to be in a band and make music."

Silversun Pickups with GRAMMY Museum execs 2022

L-R: Julie Mutnansky (Senior Manager of Education, GRAMMY Museum), Silversun Pickups, David Sears (VP of Education, GRAMMY Museum) Photo: Courtesy of the Recording Academy™️/ Rebecca Sapp, Getty Images© 2022

It Pays Off To Work With People You Really Like

Another student asked about how they were able to stay friends once they began working together. Drummer Christopher Guanlao, who joined the band two years into their journey, said it was because they were friends before, and were always hanging out — to the point that, by the time he replaced their first drummer, he knew all the songs.

Aubert added that they only worked with people that they liked, and that it's very important to really support each as a collective unit. Letting egos get in the way and blaming issues on one bandmate and threatening to fire them will only wreak havoc. As a band, you're in it together. "You're supposed to be together there to help each other," the frontman said.

Not only has the band maintained a strong bond among its four longtime members, but they've built a strong and tight creative circle around them as well — stemming from their early days, when Silver Lake was more affordable and had a rich creative community. Aubert joked they're like a tumbleweed, picking up people they really like and trust to work with them along the way.

Above All, Follow Your Heart — As Cliché As It May Sound

To close out the GRAMMY Camp guest artist session, Aubert and Monninger delivered a captivating acoustic set. But before the band could pick up and leave, there were a few more great questions — this time from Ally Matheson, a student on the music journalism GRAMMY Camp track.

During their on-camera interview, Matheson asked the band to share more about how L.A. has influenced their sound and career (They wouldn't be the band they are today without the rich early aughts L.A. creative scene, as they suggested.) She also asked them for their advice for young musicians.

With a smile, Aubert said that the best advice is to not take others' advice. He explained that even if people don't seem to understand or connect with your music — but you are making something that really moves you and is coming from your heart — you will find others who also connect with it as you do. If you believe in your work and stick with it, the people who also believe in it, and find meaning in it, will find you.

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