Had a brief ten-minute chat with Chris Taylor Brown from TRAPT not too long ago. The band is currently on tour performing their self-titled debut in its entirety. And since they’re playing here in Dallas at Trees on Thursday night, I figured what better time than now to share what we chatted about. Enjoy!
Amps: So we’re playing the entire first album on tour all summer long, eh? Tell me about that.
Chris: Yeah man, we haven’t played that album in almost exactly ten years. Those were our first real tours, like Sno-Core and it’s really cool to go back and recreate that nostalgia while we’re writing and recording our sixth record (DNA, coming soon). Just to go back to where it all started as well as where we are now, we thought it would be fun, you know? Plus, we’re playing it with a new drummer (Dylan Thomas Howard) so it’s a different vibe. The band that we have now is so tight and it’s sounding so good that we wanted to play a lot of those songs, and I was like, “Well, why don’t we play the whole record?”
Amps: How is Dylan working out?
Chris: Oh, he’s great. He’s a real good drummer. And we got Travis (Miguel) from ATREYU playing guitar with us for the last couple years and it’s been awesome as well. This whole thing we got goin’ on it just made sense to go out and play those songs.
Amps: I remember living in Philadelphia in 2003 when you guys broke on the radio there. One thing about rock radio in Philly, they REALLY get behind a band they fuckin’ like, and “Headstrong” and “Still Frame” were all over stations like WMMR and WYSP that whole summer and fall. You’ve got some serious fans in Philly, man!
Amps: It’s been ten years, TEN YEARS since your first record. When you think about that what goes through your mind?
Chris: Just the fact that we’re still here doing our thing, you know? That’s what a career is, doing something your whole life.
Amps: What are we looking at in terms of a new record?
Chris: We’re right now finishing up an acoustic collection of 13 or 14 tracks. And that’s going really well. We’re gonna call it The Acoustic Collection and put that one out in a couple of months. We’re asking fans to really get involved in our next record called DNA. Have fans send us letters about what’s gone on in their lives over the years and try to tell those stories. And we’ll do an Indiegogo campaign where we’re offering a lot of cool stuff for the fans and for them to be a part of everything that we’re doing, especially since they’re helping get it out there.
Amps: After a decade or so in TRAPT how’s the voice? I imagine you’ve put a lot of wear and tear on it, no? What do you do to keep it in shape?
Chris: The thing to do is just keep doing it correctly. I think what happens with some singers will be good for a few years because they’re constantly doing it, then they take a few years off and they jump back in too quickly and they hurt themselves. That happened to me, too. I was tired and I hurt my voice. It took me a couple of years to recover because I just wasn’t singing right. Now I start getting it in shape 3-4 weeks before a tour starts so it’s up to speed and I can be at my best. You can’t just jump into the high notes, you have to work your way up to them or you’ll hurt yourself. I start at a lower level and not hit it as hard in my first practices then I gradually build up.
Chris: I really just want to thank them for really allowing us to go out there and do what we wanna do on our own terms. And we wouldn’t be able to do it without them being behind us and supporting us at shows and buying records and getting into our music as much as they do. Everything that we do is because of our fans and we know that and cherish that and we’re blessed for having that. That’s why we’re doing this next record the way we’re doing it. I really want to see how their stories are gonna be told on this record. We’re even gonna invite people to submit riffs and submit music and we’ll try to work it into the songs. I don’t know if anyone’s ever done it before, but we’re gonna.
I gotta say, Chris Taylor Brown is one humble dude. And he’s a guy who truly gets it, just how important the fans are. All too often that is overlooked for the sake of high ticket prices, pointless merch and whatever else it takes to make the quick and easy buck. TRAPT have done it their way from day one, and I applaud them for it. The band is here at Trees Dallas on Thursday, July 17. Get tickets HERE, and be sure to check the band’s official website for more dates.