Orange County, CA
Where to begin…not at the beginning, because stories of bad cover songs and free drunken parties playing to 5 or 10 kids isn't the most rock and roll start. However, it was our beginnings. We've been in the inside of more hotels than most call girls in Vegas. And to debunk the rumors as to bands of our quote-unquote stature *ahem*: no we are not rich, no we do not drive nice cars, yes we still live with our parents, and again yes, we love every minute of it. So if you're interested in being a musician, don't expect to be financially stable unless you're the artist of the month on TRL (and let me be perfectly honest, that would be fine by me). Home Grown has been a part of the music scene, or should I say "scenes" because so many exist these days, for about 8 years now. Ska was trendy, Pop Rock was trendy, somewhere in between rock and rap became good friends, and made a strange segway into emo (whatever that is) and every variation on indie rock you can think of. In our opinions, good music is good music no matter what beat you put behind it. Our first release was on an independent label called Liberation records. That relationship began with a demo we recorded for 250 bucks at a shitty studio that was only interested in their next cigarette and their next 250 bucks. Face in the crowd, one of our earliest songs was put on a compilation called "Punk Sucks" and earned us enough recognition to land our first record deal and release entitled "That's Business." We spent more time in the studio tuning guitars and laughing at our musical immaturity than actual recording. After minimal touring we were soon discovered by a "mini-major" called Outpost Records. It seemed like a good home. A staff that really cared (and they sincerely did), artistic freedom, and an overall "good vibe." It seemed perfect. Well, I suppose it might have been, given the chance. Outpost was a part of Geffen Records, which was bought out by Interscope Music before our release came out. Needless to say we toured the s#@t out of it and did the best we could. In one year we put over 150,000 miles on our 1997 Clubwagon. I can honestly say that I have the utmost respect for any band that can survive touring. Your band mates are pretty much your girlfriends, 24 hours a day, 27 days a week and PMSing 97% of the time. Anyone in a band will tell you the same, and if they have a heart for music they won't regret one moment of it. I could go on and on about Home Grown's musical trials and tribulations. Our lineup has changed significantly since our humble beginnings. Some due to differences, others uncontrollable. But in the end what really keeps a band together is friendship. Go ahead, hire some of Guitar Centers finest Metallica's soloists, your musical add's top finalists and put them in a van together for 8 months out of a year and see how long they last. They won't. You have to get along, you have to be friends, you have to enjoy each other's company at least half of the time to make it work. So if you're just starting a band and already having differences with each other, take my advice: think about starting a new band, your next semester at college, that position available at Starbucks, anything other than the band you're in now, because it just won't work. Love your band mates, respect them, and you might just end up having the time of your life. All in all, I have no complaints even though it may seem so. We've gotten to see more of the world than most people ever will in their lifetime. As I see it, Home Grown has paid its dues and is now signed to one of the most supportive labels (Drive-Thru Records) it has ever been on, touring on our album that we are very proud of and still, after 8 years, loving every minute and memory.