Saturday, October 29, 2011

Hanson: All grown up and playing the Culture Room


Hanson - from left, brothers Zac, Taylor and Isaac
Hanson - from left, brothers Zac, Taylor and Isaac
When pop trio Hanson stormed the scene in the late ’90s with its ubiquitous and infectious hit MMMBop, it seemed that the sky was the limit for the band. In reality, that song’s popularity was pretty much the limit as far as superstardom goes. Still, the brothers — Isaac (guitar), Taylor (keyboards) and Zac (drums) — persevered, churning out melodic album after album. The group hits the Culture Room on Saturday. Drummer Zac Hanson, 26, who was only 12 at the height of the band’s popularity, talks about the tour.
What can we expect from your show?
This tour’s a little different, because we are playing albums. We’re letting fans vote on them and that changes the way we would normally do a show. Every night, we’ll play a full album as much as possible like the way it sounded, in the exact order on the record. We’re playing a lot of other stuff, too, but we’re featuring one album per set, and that definitely makes for a different kind of show.
Have you determined which album you’ll play here?
Fort Lauderdale is actually the last show, and I think Shout It Out is the record we’re gonna be doing down there.
What would you tell people who think only of ‘MMMBop’ when they think of Hanson?
That’s an interesting dilemma, because there are a lot of people who know that song or know our band sort of as a pop-culture reference but don’t really have any sort of musical reference. I guess it’s the double-edged sword of being successful enough that people know you around the world. There are plenty of people who know that phrase or know that word, but they couldn’t sing you anything that remotely sounded anything like that song. I think for people who were fans of the band on that first record and haven’t continued to follow the band, it’s the same band with the same core influences. But in time, hopefully, skill improves and you continue to push yourself and make music that gets you going and never settle.
Success didn’t come so easily for you guys after “Middle of Nowhere” — do you think that made you stronger as a group?
Well, before Middle of Nowhere, we were a band for quite a while. We probably played three or 400 shows and made three independent records, so we were no overnight success, even though to some it might seem that way. For us, it’s always remained the same, whether it’s a record that sells eight million copies or one million copies. It’s never been something that we were gonna stop. Careers are ups and downs. It wouldn’t be worth having a career if it was just up. There are no great movies or books or stories where it’s like, “He had an idea, and then he did it, and he was successful — the end!”
Michael Hamersly
Hanson plays at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Hwy, Fort Lauderdale; $28; 954-564-1074.

Read more:

Weekend Planner: MMMMBop... Hanson Brothers Are Back

There's also a Frank Zappa Halloween tribute, the Florida Orchestra and it's prime time to hit the Saturday Morning Market.

1.) Hanson at the State: It's been years – decades even – since MMMBop put Hanson on the map. The brothers are older now and have families with kids of their own. But they are still putting out hummable music, which they play Friday at the State. The show begins at 7. Admission is $27-$31. Go
2.) Manhattan Casino: If you plan to be part of the reopening party Friday for the historicManhattan Casino, with the Dizzy Gillespie All-Stars and the Casino All-Stars, you had better already have tickets or some good connections. The event is sold out.
3.) Dick Gregory Back in the Burg: Civil Rights Activist, Comedian and Author Dick Gregory is the headliner for the Give Water Give Life A Comedy Fundraiser. The event takes place Friday from 6-9 p.m. at The Lyceum, 737 3rd Avenue North. The fundraiser sponsored in part by the Community Building Group will help raise money to build reservoirs in West Africa. Tickets are $35 in advance and at door.
4.) Florida Orchestra Plays Mahler: The Florida Orchestra will play Mahler's Symphony #7 Satuday at 8 p.m. at the Mahaffey Theatre. Tickets begin at $15.
5.) Zappaween: Jerry Outlaw and Bogus Pomp bring their Halloween Frank Zapppa tribute back to Jannus Live on Saturday night for one show, beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15.
6.) Downtown Saturday Morning Market: It's harvest time, which means it's the perfect weekend to hit on the state's top farmer's markets, the Downtown Saturday Morning Market at the Al Lang field lot in downtown St. Petersburg. It kicks off by 9 and runs until 2 p.m.


by: Amanda Hensel Yesterday

Hanson, Adele

Today on Twitter, the eldest Hanson brother just couldn't seem to wrap his head around the fact that Adelecancelled her tour — or that she's going to have risky surgery. Meanwhile, Nick Cannon dropped the bomb that he never celebrated Halloween as a kid (!!!), Sean Kingston shared the secret to success, and Christina Milianenjoyed a day with her young daughter. Also in today's best tweets, Soulja Boy received a hefty compliment from the help regarding his bleached locks and 'Glee' songstress Lea Michele jumped back into work. See what your favorite stars were tweeting about today!
HANSON (@hansonmusic): Just the idea of @OfficialAdele having surgery scares me so much! It's SOOO risky! I am praying it's not true. -I
Nick Cannon (@NickCannon): When I was a kid we couldn't celebrate Halloween we had to go to church and they called it Halluejahween!
SEAN KINGSTON © (@SeanKingston): The elevator to success is out of order. You'll have to use the stairs…. One step at a time.
Christina Milian (@CMilianOfficial): Mommy Daughter Day! Taking Violet to the zoo today! : )
Wale Folarin (@Wale): Shoutout to the fake ass n—-s who gon act like females when they see me… Begging for pics.. But don't respect the hustle
Jared Followill (@youngfollowill): About to get a massage in my room. My manager told me the spa girls were hot. I showered, fixed my hair, did a bunch of push-ups. He lied.
Soulja Boy (@souljaboy): the maid thats cleaning my room just stopped and said “I LOVE YOUR HAIR!” haha swag me out then
Lea Michele (@msleamichele): I love having a late call to work! I get to have coffee and breakfast in bed! Back to work today after our day off yesterday..

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hanson proves to be more pleasure than guilty

By Leslie Gray Streeter   |  Live ShowsMusicPopR&BRock  |  October 26, 2011
On last season’s “Dancing With The Stars,” the brothers Hanson – Taylor, Zac and Isaac- appeared on the ABC celebrity dance competition’s “Guilty Pleasures” week, featuring their inescapably catchy hit “MmmBop:”. No band exactly cherishes the idea that anyone would have to feel guilty in order to justify liking their music, but during the show, lead singer Taylor had a thought.
“We were performing songs by people like Lionel Richie, and we were kinda like ‘Hey, does ‘guilty pleasure’ mean ‘really, really successful?’” says Taylor, once a ruddy-cheeked page boy-wearing 14-year-old, now a 28-year-old married dad. “We were like ‘We’ll take it!’”
Hanson hits the Culture Room Friday with their new album “Shout It Out,” but when their first studio album, “Middle of Nowhere” hit in 1997, critics seemed not to know what to make of them. They were three cherub-faced blond brothers whose music was informed more by early soul-inflected rock than by the Disney alums and boy bands sharing those charts with them. Well, they were literally boys in a band, who wrote and played their own music. But they weren’t edgy, sexy or cool, and their age, as well as their wholesomeness, made them easy to dismiss.
Nevertheless, they hit the media circuit hard, and their interviews were fun, fast, ocassionally frustrating (it was hard to tell who was talking sometimes!) and surprisingly professional – in full disclosure, I interviewed them by phone twice, and remember a lot of passing of the phone back and forth.
Taylor, who I remember as incredibly serious and polite for such a young and newly famous, says now that he remembers being “excited to be doing what we were doing, as we are now. But there were times when the idea of the media and a public persona felt a little bizarre, to keep that up. We understood it was a lot to navigate, but it was part of being in the public eye. Unfortunately, what you say and communicate very often does not come through when the stories are written. You just can’t take it personally.”
Indeed. But that’s a lesson anyone even remotely famous must learn eventually, and one “definitely important to learn early,” he says. “The sooner you learn that, the sooner you stop making every single mistake. We got an exceptionally early start in our career – next year we’ll have been in a band for 20 years – and having that experience and the ability to pull from that is great. We’ve kind of had two or three shots at it, a couple of extra swings.”
Their latest album again mines the vibe of the past – I always thought Taylor in particularly was a Midwestern Little Stevie Winwood. Taylor says that they’ve always been “about classic rock and roll, which was really the thing that inspired us and initially brought us into music – Chuck Berry, Aretha Franklin, Bobby Darren, Sam and Dave. You grow in your influences – there were a lot of great 70s bands, and we grew up in the ’90s, so the last couple of albums were a little more pop rock, with more guitar.”
And in the spirit of some of those classic recordings, much of “Shout It Out” was done in one room, old school, “done in pre-production, where we sorted out the arrangement of the songs,” Taylor says.
In the days since “MmmBop,” the band members did their own things, got married and had kids, and even did some musical exploration outside of Hanson. While Taylor says “there’s a place for taking a pause, we can’t imagine not making records. Once you’ve experienced this sort of lifestyle, and being able to create something, speaking to a massive audience, or even a medium audience, it’s an addictive game. It’s for the adrenaline junkie. We get to create something, to share it and walk on stage to try and convert people each night. It’s great to see them get converted and sing your songs back to you. The idea of it being a phase was never something that was a factor for any of us.”
And that’s nothing to be guilty of. 

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