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Aaron Gillespie

In the midst of playing a few random shows after a successful tour with his band The Almost, frontman Aaron Gillespie took a few minutes after a show to speak to JFH's Scott Fryberger about his new solo album, upcoming tours and the bad weather outside...
This interview took place on: 12/11/10.

Aaron Gillespie: Alright, you get one question.

  • JFH (Scott): Oh I better make it good then?

  • JFH (Sharie): Boxers or briefs?

  • JFH (Scott): That's it.

    Aaron: comment *laughter*

  • JFH (Scott): Well, I wrote my questions out before I saw the show, so I was gonna ask if it was just gonna be you up on the stage. Obviously it wasn't, you had a little help, but my second question is: Are you in the middle of a big tour right now?

    Aaron: No, we're gonna start a big worship night tour in January. I just got home from 75 dates with The Almost. So we just did that. I just do a lot of weekend stuff when I'm home, just 'cause it's fun. So yeah, I'm off tour right now.

  • JFH (Scott): AJust doing some random shows then?

    Aaron: I do like two shows a week, when I'm home.

  • JFH (Scott): Where do you call home right now?

    Aaron: Florida. Tampa Bay area. It's a little town just northwest of Tampa called Tarpon Springs, a little beach town. I've lived there my whole life.

  • JFH (Scott): You're probably not enjoying the snow outside right now.

    Aaron: I hate snow. I hate how it smells, looks, feels. I hate that it's wet.

  • JFH (Scott): *laughs* Yeah, it does get wet after a while.

    Aaron: *Makes an angry face* Yeah

  • JFH (Scott): So from the tour you were just on, did you have any really amazing experiences?

    Aaron: Yeah man. I mean, it all kinda runs together after a while. I hate that I can't provide you with a fantastic story, but we just met so many kids that are just busted and broken-hearted and need help, and it's just wonderful to offer Jesus to them, even if it's just for a minute, you know? We got to tour with Switchfoot, which was cool.

  • JFH (Scott): Did you have a lot of big crowds since you were with Switchfoot?

    Aaron: Yeah, some pretty good crowds.

  • JFH (Scott): Outside of shows like that, how much mainstream attention do you usually get?

    Aaron: The Almost was all mainstream attention until last year.

  • JFH (Scott): What happened last year?

    Aaron: It's a long story, but I really feel like we just had a story to tell within the Christian market about what we had seen outside. God had kinda impressed upon me to do so.

  • JFH (Scott): So then with your new worship album, Anthem Song, coming out [in March], is that gonna be just you?

    Aaron: I had a band for that.

  • JFH (Scott): Not The Almost?

    Aaron: No.

  • JFH (Scott): Anybody from other bands?

    Aaron: Nope.

  • JFH (Scott): Just a bunch of friends of yours?

    Aaron: Pretty much. Friends and people that I know from other places and stuff like that.

  • JFH (Scott): What made you want to do a worship album?

    Aaron Gillespie

    Aaron: I've just always wanted to make that record my whole life. I got my start as a musician leading worship as a kid, like fourteen. I always wanted to do it and never could. I never had time. It never worked. But now it's finally working and I'm finally able to just drop everything to do it. So we did.

  • JFH (Scott): I think a question for a lot of fans would be, Is The Almost on hiatus for a time while you focus on this?

    Aaron: Nah. The Almost is actually doing like sixteen Acquire The Fire's at the beginning of the year. And I'll be doing worship dates in between those. It's a little crazy, but yeah. And we're gonna start working on a new record soon.

  • JFH (Scott): Any potential release date for that?

    Aaron: Nah, not that I can tell you right now.

  • JFH (Scott): Earlier this year, you did a promotional video for Come&Live!, which was awesome. I'm a big fan of their ministry.

    Aaron: Yeah, they're awesome.

  • JFH (Scott): Did you ever consider putting out Anthem Song through them?

    Aaron: I don't know. I think so. I think I considered putting other songs out, like other projects. But I don't know that I'd be allowed. I'd like to do something. But I don't know if I'd be allowed to do a whole record. I don't really know how that works. But you know, Chad [Johnson] is the first guy I ever met in the music industry. Chad offered me my first shot when I was sixteen. It was for the record deal for Underoath. It was before Tooth & Nail, even. Before he worked there, he had an indie record label called Takehold. It was when Underoath was just me and three other guys, guys that aren't in the band now.

  • JFH (Scott): Old school stuff.

    Aaron: Yeah.

  • JFH (Scott): Now what do you mean when you say you wouldn't be allowed to put something out through them?

    Aaron: Oh I just don't know if I could put out a whole record. I have a record deal and I don't know how that works.

  • JFH (Scott): Oh okay, I see what you're saying. Now, I know that Tooth & Nail and BEC are the same company, but is The Almost gonna stay on Tooth & Nail and you're new stuff will be with BEC?

    Aaron: Yeah, it's Tooth & Nail and BEC, it's all one thing. It's all one office.

  • JFH (Scott): So since you're already with Tooth & Nail, that's why you wanted to stick with BEC?

    Aaron: Yeah. Most record labels are contractually binding, so you can't just like jump ship and do something else. It doesn't really work that way.

  • JFH (Scott): Back on the subject of Come&Live!, you did some work with Preson Phillips a couple albums ago. You did vocals for a couple songs right?

    Aaron: Maybe. I was in the studio for that. I did some stuff, but I don't remember what it was, or what songs they were. It all kinda runs together.

  • JFH (Scott): Do you have any plans to do more stuff like that outside of what you're already doing?

    Aaron: I've been doing a lot of weird guest stuff, yeah. There's a Universal/Motown band called He Is We. I just sang a duet with that girl. It's pretty much just a girl. There's a guy there too, but I don't know what he does. I think he might just help her write songs. I have no idea. But anyways, it's a duet for kind of a pop song. It was fun. Uh, I've written two songs for the new Run Kid Run record, then two songs for the new Abandon record. And yeah, I do a lot of stuff like that.

  • JFH (Scott): Were you actually in the songs as well?

    Aaron: I did sing in one of the Run Kid Run songs, yeah. I sang on Relient K's newest record, Forget and Not Slow Down. That came out [in '09]. I like doing stuff like that, it's fun.

  • JFH (Scott): Have you done anymore work with Kenny Vasoli like you did a few years back?

    Aaron: I would love to, but I don't ever see him. He lives in like Weird, Pennsylvania. Some weird city in Pennsylvania. There's so many cities in Pennsylvania. I never get to get up there to play shows, or for any other reason really.

  • JFH (Scott): So what you have been listening to lately?

    Aaron: Hillsong United, John Mayer, Taylor Swift *laughter*. Um... Keith Urban, Kari Jobe, a lot of random stuff. I'm a pretty random music listener. I always have been. It's weird. It's the way I roll.

  • JFH (Scott): Anything different when you're writing songs for The Almost?

    Aaron: Yeah, some of my favorite bands, like Foo Fighters, U2, Bruce Springsteen, stuff like that.

  • JFH (Scott): That was a good U2 cover you did tonight.

    Aaron: Oh thanks! I love that song man. I love them, they're so good.

  • JFH (Scott): What about when you were with Underoath? Was there any heavy stuff you listened to?

    Aaron: Yeah. Yeah, like Botch and The Refused and Converge... that's pretty much it. I don't like a lot of heavy music. Never really have. I like the idea of it and the heart of it. But I never really got into every band that came around the corner playing D chug music. I never really understood it.

  • JFH (Scott): There's a lot of those out there.

    Aaron: I love the artistic ones though. I mean, more power to anybody who's out there doing what they love and doing it for a reason and having a good time doing it. I just never got into it or understood a lot of it. I like a lot of it, but yeah.

  • JFH (Scott): As far as what you played tonight - I don't listen to a lot of mainstream worship, so a few of the songs I didn't recognize, but how many were from Anthem Song, if any?

    Aaron: Out of like the four or five that I played, two.

  • JFH (Scott): What are they called?

    Aaron: One song is called "We Were Made For You" and the other is called "Washed Away." "We Were Made For You" is up online now.

  • JFH (Scott): Oh sweet. So that comes out March 8?

    Aaron: March 8.

  • JFH (Scott): Is it already finished, and just waiting for release date?

    Aaron: Yeah. You just can't release records around this time of year because they just get ignored.

  • JFH (Scott): It's true. We already have our top ten lists for the year up on the site.

    Aaron: Yeah. You just can't do it. And if you release it in January, all the music business people are kinda closed down. I don't know, I don't really care about all that stuff. But the label won't put it out until March, so whatever *laughter*

  • JFH (Scott): I guess they're kind of in charge.

    Aaron: They are. Yes they are.

  • JFH (Scott): So what are your plans until then?

    Aaron: We have the worship tour that starts in January, and it's like two and a half months long, and it goes through when the record's released. And then we're going to South America with The Almost in April. Then Europe in May. I don't know dude. My phone's dead or I'd look at my calendar and tell you *laughter*. But I'm going somewhere. I'm always somewhere.

  • JFH (Scott): That's good. There's always someplace to reach people.

    Aaron: Yeah man. I'm blessed for sure.

  • JFH (Scott): That's all I have. Anything you wanna add?

    Aaron: No, just thanks for talking. *yawns*

  • JFH (Scott): Gonna go to bed now?

    Aaron: Yep, I'm going to bed!

    Aaron Gillespie's new solo album, Anthem Song, is available March 8, 2011
    wherever music is sold.


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