Coachella was a hopping hot bed of exploding talent this year. The bullet band from LA is an Indie group called Foster the People. http://www.fosterthepeople.com Giving a rousing performance to a packed tent at Coachella, it is a trend that occurs for them wherever they play. The group is currently on a European and nationwide tour. Some of the shows are already sold out, such as in Chicago, so check into it fast.
Bassist/Vocalist Cubbie Fink, took a few moments to talk music in the VIP area…
Where are you guys at tour wise right now?
We actually just finished up our first US tour and we played two dates in UK before coming here and so we have a few weeks down, go back to do a small European tour, come back to do another US tour and have stuff planned for the entire year.
Do you have any recording coming up?
No, nothing in the near future.
It sounds like you don’t have too much time for that?
No, not too much time. (Laughs)
How did you guys get together?
We were actually all friends in LA, all of us are transplants. We met through mutual friends and we were all hanging out. I’ve known Mark Foster, the singer for four years now, and I met Mark Pontius, the drummer, through Mark Foster, so the three of us have hung out and played music together and then it was like we were all busy doing other things, then all our schedules became free and we started doing this…
How was playing the residency at The Echo?
It was insane! It was so much fun. We were just doing it to get some shows under our belt, obviously it’s great playing in your hometown. It was just insane watching the crowds grow every week though. It was mind boggling. We had no idea we were going to have that kind of response.
Did you guys know that there was a line of 350 people outside the last night?
That’s what we heard. That’s so insane. It was so much fun. We could feel the energy on stage.
Echo is pretty well known for our local neighborhood bands, and there were two young Hispanic guys next to me, just freaking out over your music. I remember them asking for your autograph after the show. Is that like a dream come true?
Oh wow, that’s cool. Yeah, it really is.
What other local LA venues have you guys played?
Some of our early shows were Westside, we did The Dakota Lounge, it used to be The Temple Bar. That was our first show. It was kind of in that moment, after that show, when we finished and we all looked at each other and went, “Ok, there’s something special here.” There were some shows after that at Viper Room, then random stuff. We also went to SXSW last year with only four shows under our belt at the time. We played four or five shows out there last year and it was kind of the beginning of everything.
You just played SXSW again?
Did you do something with Filter Magazine?
Yeah, Cedar Street, with KCRW too. We did seven or eight shows within 7 days.
How draining is that for you?
It’s draining but exhilarating at the same time. By the end of the day, sleep is good.
What inspired you to become a musician?
The Beatles Rubber Soul was instrumental. Also, the first time I heard Beck’s Mellow Gold. That just radically changed my understanding of what music could be, the way he uses sounds to create music, that was huge. I heard that in 6th grade, and that was right about the time I started playing guitar.
Where are you from originally?
How long have you lived in LA?
About four years now. Growing up in San Diego, I didn’t ever plan on moving to LA. I went to film school and have always been a musician, so it just seems that both those industries are in LA.
If you went out to a show in LA would it be eastside or westside?
The Echo is my favorite.
Have you played any shows that have had poor sound or been difficult?
Some shows this tour, yeah. We have to cram a lot of equipment and ourselves up on stage, which makes it hard. We have a ton of gear and five guys, so finding space to move can be difficult. We have been having a great time though. We love it.
Have you had a touring experience before?
No. We’re packed into a van, and some of our crew have been touring in busses for years, so for them to take it down to traveling in a 15 person van is crazy. We definitely appreciate them.
Do you do anything to pass the time?
We have a little DVD station set up in front between the two seats, and get the laptop going. It’s no fun sing along or anything like that going on.
When’s the new album coming out?
May 24th and we just posted a bunch of new show dates on our site. http://www.fosterthepeople.com
Coachella photos are at http://www.flickr.com/2010domino