Special to The Charger Bulletin: An Exclusive Interview with 3Oh!3

Ashley Winward

Known for their killer dance hits and creative lyrics, the boys of 3OH!3 have been a staple in the dance/alternative scene for nearly a decade. Nat Motte and Sean Foreman, the Boulder Colorado duo, have hit the road on the Journeys Noise tour this fall and are sure to get you moving along with The Summer Set, Wallpaper, and the New Beat Fund who join them as support. I was lucky enough to catch 3OH!3 for a few spare minutes to discuss the tour as well as some other fun topics.

Photo Provided by Ashley Winward
Photo Provided by Ashley Winward

The Journeys Noise tour is still in the very first few dates of its run, so I had to ask what fans should be expecting when they head out this fall. “Actually we were talking about it last night with the bands,” Motte explained, “and all the bands that are on the tour are really concerned with one thing, and that’s to make sure people have fun at the shows. Overall, it’s just a great tour to come out and have a good time too.”

Foreman added, “I think they’ll love the fact that we all wrote and will perform a song together, it’s called ‘Turn the Night On’ and that’s a lot of fun because it’s pretty much a party on stage.”

A Halloween inspired video for the single was put out the day before tour that was created by Foreman. “I was just thinking like Blair Witch, and how they handheld cameras,” he said. “None of us were together, the Summer Set dudes were in the UK, basically we were like ‘here’s the idea, uh, shoot it yourself.’”

The video got rave reviews from fans not only for the song, but Known for their killer dance hits and creative lyrics, the boys of 3OH!3 have been a staple in the dance/alternative scene for nearly a decade. Nat Motte and Sean Foreman, the Boulder Colorado duo, have hit the road on the Journeys Noise tour this fall and are sure to get you moving along with The Summer Set, Wallpaper, and the New Beat Fund who join them as support. I was lucky enough to catch 3OH!3 for a few spare minutes to discuss the tour as well as some other fun topics.

The Journeys Noise tour is still in the very first few dates of its run, so I had to ask what fans should be expecting when they head out this fall. “Actually we were talking about it last night with the bands,” Motte explained, “and all the bands that are on the tour are really concerned with one thing, and that’s to make sure people have fun at the shows. Overall, it’s just a great tour to come out and have a good time too.”

Foreman added, “I think they’ll love the fact that we all wrote and will perform a song together, it’s called ‘Turn the Night On’ and that’s a lot of fun because it’s pretty much a party on stage.”

A Halloween inspired video for the single was put out the day before tour that was created by Foreman. “I was just thinking like Blair Witch, and how they handheld cameras,” he said. “None of us were together, the Summer Set dudes were in the UK, basically we were like ‘here’s the idea, uh, shoot it yourself.’”

The video got rave reviews from fans not only for the song, but for the way all the parts fit together so seamlessly. “I edited the video, and when I got them all in, everyone had a different way to do it. Brian’s holding a chainsaw and stuff, you know Ricky Wallpaper’s like, he had a couple different ones that were all really crazy. I think it’s great because even though they’re all different, they all have a similar type of feeling; dark and in the basement, so it turned out really fun to do and edit together.”

I was especially impressed because the formatting of the video was in all different styles, from professional cameras to iPhones, yet the whole project ran so smooth.

The tour may have just kicked off, but already Motte and Foreman are focused on staying well and energized for the rest of the fall with some tea and other touring tips.

“When starting tour we always kinda get worn down because you forget how to sleep on a moving vehicle, so going into a show we’re just trying to rest and get everything ready for the show and save all our energy for the time we’re on stage.”

Foreman went on to say that the bands have been really bonding and getting excited about the rest of the journey.

“We all get along really well and we’re all friends. It’s just a lot of fun; it turns into a big party! You kinda get those first show jitters out of the way and I think we’ve done that, I mean the show’s been awesome, but I think tonight and progressively forward, it’s going be easy and fun.”

Music wasn’t always the plan for Motte and Foreman; both had been in college when they decided to pursue careers in music instead. Nat noted that he would probably be in the first year of residency at medical school, while Foreman would be majoring at… Jimmy Johns, the popular sandwich eatery.

“I don’t know, I love school, but I didn’t necessarily know what I wanted to do professionally,” he explained. “I would be working in some capacity, but I have no idea where I’d be right now.”

What I found most interesting about talking to 3OH!3 was discussing their work with big name pop artists like Maroon 5 (Motte co-wrote the hit “Love Somebody”), and Ariana Grande (Foreman worked on her song “Tattooed Heart”), and how the writing process may change when working on a song outside of one’s normal genre or demographic. Motte said, “I think what we’re good at, is that we’re artists and we have our own artistry, and we understand what it’s like to make a song and live with the song and play it every night, you know? Some other songwriters might not know what that’s like, because they only live with the song as long as they write it and produce it. You try to put yourself in the position of the artist that you’re working with and tell yourself, that above all, it’s important for them to be comfortable with that song and have fun making it.”

He also mentioned that the writing process itself isn’t vastly different from writing for their own band. “I don’t know, I think a lot of that is maybe subconscious. I think you just go in and write and try to kind of express whatever you’re trying to accomplish the best way you can, don’t really overthink it.”

When asked about giving some advice to all the music industry and sound recording majors on campus, Foreman had some really insightful comments on the topic.

“I mean for us, and for most artists that find a niche and become successful, you really just have to focus on your craft and enjoy what you’re doing. There are so many outlets. There’s really no excuse for why you can’t record and make an album that’s just as good as any major market album nowadays. So do just that, work on your craft and give something new to the world of music that hasn’t been done before.”

Of course, being 3OH!3, the entire interview wasn’t all serious, so I did have some fun asking silly questions as well: What are the boys best hangover cures for example? Foreman swears by a shot of pickle juice, while Motte prefers to work out the toxins with a pick-up game of basketball. And have you ever wondered what food they would eat forever if given the chance? Foreman swears by deep dish pizza; however, Motte likes to spice things up with enchiladas, and lots of them.

If you want to get the full details of the interview, including how Brian Logan Dales of The Summer Set made a surprise guest appearance, head over to http://unhmic.tumblr.com/. If you haven’t checked out “Omens” yet, be sure to listen up for it, these two have such amazing music! I was truly honored to be able to sit down with one of my all-time favorite bands!