Thursday, June 30, 2011

Tulsa is my Graceland - by DJ & Allison

Last month my best friends and I flew down to Tulsa, Oklahoma to see a concert put on by our favorite band, Hanson, in their hometown. We spent a week checking out the beautiful city and had a fantastic time. Highlights for me were tandem biking along the river (SO much harder than it looks!!), meeting so many lovely locals, and checking out all the awesome local restaurants. We also took a daytrip to Dallas, Texas for another concert and some BBQ, which was really fun even though we hit an armadillo with our car. I absolutely loved Tulsa, and I can’t wait to go back.

Hanson rocks the Gardens

by S.J. Velasquez
Starry Night in the Gardens headliners from Hanson brought out the teenyboppers in all of us during their show Wednesday at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. Opening acts John Vesely of Secondhand Serenade and Michelle Branch contributed to a perfect night consisting of pop-rock, food, wine, beer and a lovely breeze.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hanson Family Tree

I'd like to thank 'hansonish' for this amazing Tree! You guys rock!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Hanson sign fans breasts

Fourteen years after MMMBop, Hanson are back. Brothers Zac, 25, Taylor, 28 and Isaac, 30, have just released their eighth studio album. The voices are a little deeper, but thankfully the hair is just as big...
Dancin' with Hanson: Beth entertains the band (L-R: Taylor, Isaac, Zac)
Where: Strawberry Moons nightclub, London
So, boys, you're back! And all grown up. Have you missed the UK?
Taylor: Yeah! We love it here. We're also big fans of British music, especially Mumford & Sons. They're providing a contrast to people like Lady Gaga and Katy Perry.
You're not Gaga or Katy fans, then?
Zac: They let the production cover up the lack of craftsmanship. OK, I get it, you've got a great beat and what you just sang was kooky. But it's like they took Dr Seuss and dumbed it down. It's moronic.
Woah...That's Team Hanson off the Gaga and Perry Christmas card list.
Isaac: But take Adele. She's an example of real greatness. I hope that in an over-imaged world, her success shows that ultimately artistry does matter.
You're all married with kids now - how many kids have you got between you?
Zac: Eight! Issac and I have two each and Taylor has four.
So, to put it bluntly, you've been having a lot of sex while you've been away...
Isaac: It doesn't take much effort. But, yeah, we've been practising procreating.
Zac: We prefer the practising bit.
Gulp. Do girls still come on to you?
Taylor: They've become more brazen as they've got older. Drunk fans are a whole new dynamic.
Isaac: Requests to sign breasts are not uncommon.
And are you ever tempted to, er, sign them?

Fans ask us to sign their breasts
Zac: Why do you think we formed a band in the first place? We're men. We have penises.
Taylor: Can that be the headline?
Maybe... Your wives must be very trusting.
Zac: Women are way too complicated to mess around with more than one at a time. I have absolutely no desire to fool around with someone else.
Taylor: But I do believe that if you're not looking, you might as well be dead.
So there's a policy that you can look but not touch?
Zac: Yeah, it's called a wedding ring.
Taylor: Of course we're conscious of beautiful women. But if you see a nice car, you don't break into it and drive off.
Didn't one of you marry a fan?
Isaac: Technically, we all did!
Taylor: But you were the one who threw a guitar pick at her head in the crowd...
Isaac: I spotted her, flirted with her the entire show and we hung out afterwards and started dating. She's still got the pick.
Do you get sick of playing MMMBop?
Taylor: No! We're really proud of it. It's part of who we are.
Have you made enough money to retire and be comfortable?
Taylor: Not as comfortable as I'd like. But, yeah, we could all retire and live a very good life.
  • Hanson's album Shout It Out is out now.
The damage
Goat's cheese and mushroom tarts ordered (by Taylor):1
Goat's cheese and mushroom tarts uneaten: 1 (Taylor doesn't like mushrooms)
Minutes wasted trying to teach us basic guitar: 10
Days MMMBop has been our ear worm since the interview: 10 (and counting)

Hanson love Adele, but aren’t so keen on The X Factor

Hanson love Adele, but aren’t so keen on The X Factor
Hanson (who we have a litttttttle bit of a crush on) are back with shorter hair, a brand new album called Shout It Out AND a week of gigs in little old Londontown.
Not wanting to miss out, we ran down to Kings College to catch the last of the gigs and to listen to what their new album sounded like - and it didn’t disappoint. From the infectious new single Give A Little (Taylor’s favourite song from the album) to the gospel inspired Carry You There we swayed our hips and threw our hands in the air and danced the night away!
Issac, Taylor, and Zac have come a long way since their MMMbop days and this new album has a much rockier sound – think Kings of Leon. The last song on the album, Me Myself and I was the one that drew the biggest response from the crowd – with one woman silencing the noisy crowd by screaming ‘shut the f**k up I want to hear the lyrics!’
With celeb fans like Ellie Goulding and Fern Cotton (who we spied in the crowd) plus a headlining slot at V festival Hanson are very much back on the music map. 
"England have a real appreciation of pop music, much more than the US," says Taylor. "At the Glamour awards the other night we met Ellie Goulding, man that girls voice is fantastic," he continues. "No, not as good as Adele, her voice is so pure, and the lyrics to Someone Like You are incredible," Issac butts in. "I don’t think you’d find people like that on the X Factor, it’s more about the judging panel than the actual acts," Issac continues. ‘We like the show, its really entertaining, but you gotta hope that the future idols of the music world aren’t reliant of winning the X Factor!
For more information visit

Saturday, June 25, 2011


Friday June 24 2011 by Leah Simpson for
LEAH Simpson checks out the Hanson 5of5 shows in London
1of5: Middle of Nowhere (1997) – When I arrive at King College London Theatre, Hanson’s 5of5 home for the next week, I have already mentally prepared myself for the task that is pushing my way through the human barrier - that is otherwise known as ‘Fansons’ - and hitting bullseye (the bar).

However, swinging open the double doors in dramatic fashion, it seems more likely that I’ve stormed into a quiet student union meeting rather than the crazy crowds you might expect to find at a sold-out five-night series of gigs.

A union meeting with Isaac, Taylor and Zac Hanson that is, a band of brothers who are proud to have sold over 15 million records worldwide.

As I tiptoe past an almost silent – and half empty - audience, I quickly get the gist of what’s going on.  A select few music lovers are being let in on the ups, downs, dramas and meanings behind Hanson’s most successful album yet.
Gig review: Hanson's 5of5 London/ Zac's Live From Albertane drums (centre)

Yes, if you’d have been a fanclub member – and had the extra sterling to spare - you could have been chatting about serious musician stuff with three talented musicians every night before the show.

And by the way, serious doesn’t include questions about fictional song characters as one unfortunate attendee found out.

“Where did Johnny go?” asked one young customer in reference to the rarely played live, Yearbook.

“That’s not a real question” answered pianist and middle brother Taylor. Before swiftly moving on to a more intelligent query.


Giving us at least a good hour to crave more of the sought after blonde bombshells – and perhaps our beds – the boys were back to rock the stage and a much fuller crowd.

With minimal verbal filling between tracks, the lads played the first of five albums with gusto – hugely helped by the voices of hundreds more who could not help but more than mime along to an album which spelled out most of their childhoods.

Thirteen tunes later and Hanson return to cover Spencer Davis Group’s Gimme Some Lovin’, a track featured on the OST for the movie Jack Frost and their Live From Albertane record. Alas, Zac’s drum design is explained.

2of5: This Time Around (2000) – Back with nifty new bass drum art, the guys are introduced by our second celebrity spotting at a Hanson concert so far this week – Fearne Cotton! With X Factor 2010 contestant Katie Waissel excitedly announcing her arrival the evening before, it was the radio presenter’s turn to hog the limelight. And she admitted that although she had missed the performance of the band’s debut album the night before, she had been lucky enough to get a private performance of Mmmbop earlier backstage.

This Time Around the group produced a much more energetic show than the night before with standout tracks including the power-packed You Never Know and In The City, where those who might have dreamt up a Hanson fantasy or two got to witness Isaac and - a double denim-wearing - Taylor  slobber over the same microphone.
Gig reviews: Isaac Hanson 50f5 London

Giving the masses time to regain their breath from all the jumping required, Song To Sing saw the youngest and oldest members step out from behind the comfort of their equipment for some smooth crooning.

Accompanied only by keys and a lone lighter from one audience member, the final track was a sombre one which spoke of “looking for a friend to borrow” and “a heart to follow”.

3of5: Underneath (2005) - Probably the record which means the most to the musicians aged 25, 28 and 30, this LP marks the start of a brand new Hanson era. Fresh from parting ways with the major label that helped them shoot to fame, Hanson decided from here on out to establish their own label, 3CG Records and release new music the way they wanted.
Gig reviews: Taylor Hanson 50f5 London

Thanking the fans for the more direct support they experienced with their third studio album, the boys went on to play UK Top 40 hits Penny and Me and Lost Without Each Other.

In between, non-fan club members were baffled to hear father-of-two, Isaac, dedicate Zac’s lead vocal track, Misery, “to the feline lovers”.

In fact, cat fans look away now – Zac had earlier informed the crowd that the song – written while fighting to gain the rights to their own album - was originally about plotting to kill a former manager’s cat. Understandably the lyrics were changed before making the final cut.
Gig reviews: Zac Hanson 50f5 London

In what I’m sure had more to do with Taylor’s braces popping off his trousers and less to do with cats being murdered, it surprisingly took longer than the halfway point for a fainting incident to take place. But indeed those who remembered Hansonmania back in the nineties got the ‘Believe’r fever they came for when a girl passed out just before the song was due to be performed.

Needless to say I went home fulfilled.

4of5: The Walk (2007) - In an album described as most similar to This Time Around – probably due to the “thicker vocal chords” produced by the featured choirs – this album takes Hanson back to Africa.

Compelled to visit the Soweto township in South Africa after penning tracks such as Great Divide and Fire On The Mountain, their experience in an area heavily affected by HIV and AIDs pushed them to add further to the LP.

Without a doubt tonight saw the most infectious numbers with dancing-related highlights including Running Man, Blue Sky and uptempo Tearing It Down.

In fact the backing musicians played so hard that William broke the bass! Ever the professional, the problem was fixed by joining Demetrius on the other side of the stage and interpreting his part on the keyboards.

5of5: Shout It Out (2011) - Finishing off an epic series of events night five of five promised to be an emotional one. And if it wasn’t because the crowd of fans – who had flown in from as far and wide as Spain and Australia - knew they probably wouldn’t be seeing Hanson again for yonks. No doubt, the day’s earlier events would have tugged on a few heart strings.

In keeping with Wednesday night’s gig, Hanson took part in a mile-long barefoot walk with fans in London’s Embankment the rain. Desperate to raise funds for needy kids in Africa, the band donated a dollar for every person that completed the journey with them.

So as I sauntered past wet and shivering lines of people on my way out from the over-heated Underground, I could only hope Hanson’s new stuff was worth the wait. For the sake of those queueing at least...

Determined not to catch their death, the audience warmed up to opener Waiting For This and showed they were back to their best by track two, Thinking ‘Bout Something, during which a full on dance routine ensued throughout the surprisingly, male-heavy crowd.

All in all, the trio played an impressive 70+ tracks throughout their London residency. And a 5of5 concept which may not have worked for other artists – due to the lack of surprise element on the song order front - certainly seemed to fulfil the needs of paying punters here.

By Leah Simpson

Friday, June 24, 2011

Hanson Goes to London! Part II by Taylor Hanson


TH Profile Pic-London2.jpgFor my second installment of pics from iconic London, I tried to keep my promise of bringing you photos that were a bit brighter and bolder in contrast to the previous blog, which featured only black and white images. The theme for this week's selections was "louder," because most of the pics were taken during the first half of our five-night concert series, which lived up to our expectations and more with fans coming from every corner of Europe -- from the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Spain and beyond -- as well as from Australia and Latin America. It was like the United Nations of music fans. The activity surrounding Shout It Out's UK release and the kick-off of the sold-out shows was from sun-up till down, but in between the cameras were out capturing everything from cupcakes, technicolor courtyards next to the oldest skateshop in London and the location for our 1997 music vid "Where's the Love." Mixed in with the colorful shots are my grainy late-night iPhone pics which captured the gathering fans during our after-show departure and an abstract pic from the celeb-packed, Glamour "Woman of the Year" event. Prolly my favorites are those purely for the art; images of side-streets, bike racks and robot sushi shops, all of which make up a wandering vision of this great city through my various lenses. Hope you enjoy. -TH
This story was published on Jun. 23, 2011

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