While so many things have seemed uncertain this past year, the one thing that’s a definite among many music fans is that they want to get “back at it.” Listeners and artists alike who share this sentiment have craved the return of in-person shows, musical hits and connecting with the crowd on a tune.
After taking a two year hiatus to focus on individual projects, the trio assured Celeb Secrets Country that the six-song project is one of their best ones yet, as their time apart as solo artists made them stronger as a group.
“The band has always been bigger than the sum of its parts, and we think stretching on our own projects expands our musical muscle independently, so our sum is that much stronger when we’re back together,” the band shared in an exclusive statement to CS Country. “With that comes an expanded friend and musician base, so we get to work with new players and producers. We also think time at home with some quiet and exploring our instruments and vocals matures us in a way that doing the familiar may not challenge us to do.”
While the beloved band has expanded their friend and musician base, they also have expanded their musical style. They shared with us that this new EP has its fair share of new territory.
“….The EP is definitely a combination of classic ‘Hammers’ with some new twists, some pretty big ones in fact. ‘Hillbilly Disco’ with Meaghan Patrick is, well, our first Disco song and ‘Down Down Down’ is our first song about boats. We’ve literally written about everything that has wheels, so, time for some waves!”
After taking a listen, it’s no argument that the group has made some waves in the music industry.
Celeb Secrets Country sat down with The Road Hammers (virtually) to learn more about this exciting EP, behind-the-scenes details and what’s next for the incredible group.
Check out the full Q&A below and don’t forget to let us know what you think of Back At It by either leaving a reaction at the bottom of the post or by sending us a tweet at @CS_Country.
Celeb Secrets Country: Congrats on “Back At It!” What can you tell me about this new EP?
The Road Hammers: “Thank you!! It’s been a pretty rough couple of years for everyone, especially the music industry, and I think having new music to work on was the main thing that got us through this as a band. I think the first single “The Boys Are Back At It” pretty much sums up how we all feel. We want to get ‘back at it’, back to being together, back to concerts, back to socializing, that’s what we’re meant to do.The EP is definitely a combination of classic Hammers with some new twists, some pretty big ones in fact. “Hillbilly Disco” with Meaghan Patrick is, well, our first Disco song and “Down Down Down” is our first song about boats. We’ve literally written about everything that has wheels, so, time for some waves!”
CSC: This is your first time back making music after a two year hiatus! Why did you feel now was the right time to get “back at it?”
TRH: “The first single was written and pretty much recorded before the pandemic started. We knew it was a Hammer song right off, but as we went through the lock downs, and then started to see the light at the end of the tunnel, it was obvious this was going to be the first single. It feels like a summer anthem after a long winter and as we start to see the shows and fans return, it’s the perfect time for new music. We’re musicians, it’s like a sixth sense, if there’s a chance to perform we can feel it before we know it!”
CSC: After taking time apart to work on solo projects and then coming back together as a group, do you feel your style or sound has changed at all?
TRH: “The band has always been bigger than the sum of its parts, and I think stretching on our own projects expands our musical muscle independently so our sum is that much stronger when we’re back together. With that comes an expanded friend and musician base, so we get to work with new players and producers. I also think time at home with some quiet and exploring our instruments and vocals matures us in a way that doing the familiar may not challenge us to do.”
CSC: The EP has a great mix of artist features! How did these collaborations come to fruition and what was it like working with such a broad mix of other artists?
TRH: “First off, this business is pretty unique, where the line between friends and ‘associates’ isn’t really there. It’s a family, and sometimes we get to record with our family. ‘All My Friends’ is an awesome track that shows that. Dan Davidson wrote and produced the track with us, and it was a no brainer. We needed Dan to sing on it, and we all just started calling in some long time friends: Terri Clark was the first big artist to take me on tour, she’s simply the best; The Hammers and Gordie Johnson go way back, and we’ve always tried to include some Big Sugar influence in what we do. If you look up Tone in the dictionary it says ‘…see ‘Gordie Johnson’. Jason Blaine, Aaron Pritchett, Tim Hicks all long time friends of the band, same with Cory Marks, who shares that southern rock country influence we all love.”
CSC: Of the six songs on the EP, do you happen to have a favorite?
TRH: “Everyone always says they love all the songs the same, and I do, but I play some of them more often than others for a ton of different reasons. I wrote ‘Give’r’ with Time Hicks several years back, and I don’t think any of us thought it would ever be recorded, let alone be a single and become the sports anthem it has. The demo for that song was on my hard drive for a long time, and I’d always put it in my playlists and crank it. Just something super simple, rockin’ and very Hammer about it. Makes me wanna drive fast! I also really love ‘Down Down Down.’ Like I said we’ve never had a boat song before and it just sounds like summer.”
CSC: I have heard that you are more than ready to return to live music! Is there a song on this collection that you are most excited to perform live?
TRH: “We’ve already done a handful of dates, and we’ve been kicking the set off with The Boys Are Back At It which is awesome. We’ve also been playing ‘Give’r’ which gets the party going big time! For me I can’t wait to play “Stay Wild” live. It’s a big song with a strong message, and it feels like it would be a really special moment in the show.”
CSC: We have received two epic videos for “Give’r” and “The Boys Are Back At It.” Can we anticipate any more music videos to accompany the other songs?
TRH: “We actually just shot three videos for ‘Down Down Down,’ ‘Stay Wild’ and ‘Hillbilly Disco.’ Can’t wait to share these with everyone. Especially ‘Hillbilly Disco.’ You’ll see a strong nod to one of our fave legendary bands!”
CSC: Since we are Celeb Secrets, are there any behind-the-scenes secrets you can share from creating this album that we wouldn’t know just by listening?
TRH: “One thing that was very cool was working with the technology we have. Writing on zoom and dm sending files back and forth so everyone can work on tracks at their own studios. It’s amazing to write something like ‘Stay Wild’ and have a full track ready to mix like 2 days later. These guys work fast and they rock!”
CSC: Can you tell us about your plans for the rest of 2021?
TRH: “We hope to do as many shows as we can for the rest of the year, and we already have several on the books for next year. But before all that, we’re actually about to head into the studio with a Grammy winning producer who wants to make the ‘ultimate Hammer record,’ which is exactly what we wanna do too!”
Listen to “Back At It” below…