TM - Hi, This is Amelia and Elizabeth from Twinmusix and we are here with Jerome from Switchfoot. Thank you for having this interview with us today we really appreciate it.
JE - Thank you, we are getting ready to go over to your part of the world.
TM - What is your favourite thing to do in Australia?
JE - Besides going to the beaches, I like going to a cafe and getting a good flat white when I have a chance as well as some Tim Tams, you can't go wrong.
TM - A coffee is always good, so are Tim Tams. What is your favourite flavour of Tim Tams?
JE - I like the regular ones, the chocolate ones.
TM - My favourite is caramel.
JE - I like those two actually.
TM - Have you tried Vegemite?
JE - Yes, I have but I not a fan. I have tried it a few times. You have to try it when you are over there, it's kind of like a staple.
TM - Do you have anything in the United States were people are like “Ew, why would you eat that?”
JE - No, but I was born in the Philippines. We have this delicacy, I only tried it once, and it is called Balut. It is a fertilised egg which is cut open and the embryo is still in it and you just chugg it. I have only done it a couple of times and it's not good. It tastes like a regular eggs with feathers and bones. That's the nice way of putting it.
TM - Aw, I couldn't eat that.
JE - They made us do it in the Philippines on stage, they brought one up and we were kind of forced to do it.
TM - You are coming to Australia, what can fans expect from your show?
JE - We haven't been to Australia in a few years. In the past year we have started doing shows again and we are bringing back a lot of our old rock and roll roots. It’s just a great rock and roll rock show.
TM - What can we expect from your setlist?
JE - Here is the thing about Switchfoot that probably a few people might know. We tentatively make a setlist but we might change it in the show. We literally don't know what we are going to play when we get up on stage. We kind of vibe out the crowd and if they are like we want to hear some rock songs then on the fly, we will just put on all the rock songs we have. They could also be like, hey this is a mellow night, let's put in some acoustic songs. We write down a tentative setlist and when we get on stage it changes. I have been doing this for 20 years and it changes every show.
TM - I think it is awesome that you change your setlist every show, you never know what you are going to get.
JE - Well some people they'll yell out a request that we haven't played in like 20 years and sometimes we will attempt to try and play it. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't, but that is the beauty of live shows. You know it's not always perfect, we are human, we don't play with tracks we actually play with musical instruments. Sometimes in the middle of the song we would break a string and you just have to keep going. It is the beauty of a live show, anything can happen.
TM - Do you have any new music coming out?
JE - For Christmas we came out with a Christmas album called ‘This Is Our Christmas Album’, which is funny because we have been a band for over 20 years and we have never made a Christmas album. We finally decided, “Hey, let's make a Christmas album”. We just finished a tour around the states playing those songs and we may not play it again until next Christmas, unless you all want to hear Christmas songs in Australia.
TM - Well I guess you could do a Christmas in July tour.
JE - Well we recorded the Christmas album in July and it felt kind of weird recording a Christmas album in July. You had to do it so the music can come out in December, it just feels weird if you don't play it in December.
TM - If you could have any band play one of your songs what band would it be, what song and would it be in your style or their style?
JE - That's hard because you write these songs and you play the songs and it is your version of how it is supposed to sound. Let's say a band like U2 would pick up our song. How would they interpret the way our song comes out, I could see U2 playing 'Dare You to Move' or something in that kind of genre. I could see Foo Fighters doing 'Meant To Live'. It's really an honour if a band wants to play your songs. I think Taylor Swift sang one of our songs in her concerts, 'Dare You to Move'
TM - That's awesome that Taylor Swift sang one of you're songs.
JE - The next week Taylor Swift invited John up on stage and they played 'Meant to Live' together, that was interesting, that was awesome.
TM - That's cool, I mean Taylor Swift is the top of the chain in the music world at the moment.
JE - I know it was awesome hearing her singing the melody of 'Meant to Live'. Singing it up on stage with John, it's awesome. I wonder if it is up on YouTube somewhere, it probably is.
TM - Have you met Taylor Swift?
JE - Yes we have and she is very knowledgeable about music. When we met her she pointed out songs in our album, she was like “That one song, I really enjoyed this lick and the lyrics and the vibe of it”. She was just talking about details of the songs from our albums, we were like “Wow she is a student of music”, she just knows a lot about music.
TM - Would you ever do a collaboration with her?
JE - Who wouldn't she is one of the biggest artists in the world. It's funny because I don't really listen to much Taylor Swift but my family and my wife and my kids all listen to Taylor Swift. It is on on Spotify all the time.
TM - I'm the same I don't really listen to much mainstream radio but our friend is obsessed with Taylor Swift so I've heard all of it. She is always like “Do you want to listen to it?” and I’m like, “Ah ok”.
JE - Her songs are awesome, their catchy and you can sing along to them.
TM - What was the first ever artist or bands that you saw live?
JE - It's funny because the first band I saw live was this band called Depeche Mode. They were touring the US and they were huge. They played the Rose Bowl which is a 50,000 seat stadium. I was one of the people in that stadium and the cool thing is they filmed it and they made a DVD of it, Depeche Mode 101. I would watch it and I was trying to find myself in the audience but I was way back so that was my first concert. My second after that I went to the U2 Joshua Tree tour when they first toured it here in Southern California. Those two concerts which where my first literally changed my life. I was like I want to do something like that in my life. After that I decided “Hey, I am going to see if I can pursue music, I want to be able to do something that these bands are doing”. It was life changing, I was about 19 or 20.
TM - Did that inspire you to play music?
JE - Totally they looked like they were doing something they enjoyed and the audience was just taking it all in. I wanted to be a part of something like that. You are performing something and the audience is singing it back to you, it's that form of connection and playing music that you love. It is amazing, it was literally life-changing.
TM - What's your favourite memory of watching someone else perform live, can you tell us a story?
JE - One of my favourite concerts I ever went to was in a small club in Los Angeles, this little known band called Radiohead was playing. There was only maybe 200 people in the club and they were just starting to tour the album 'The Bends'. It was so funny because I was like, I am so excited to see this band and everyone that came was yelling “Play Creep” and Radiohead got so mad, they were like “We are not going to play Creep”. I was a young kid and I was like, wow this is so cool.
TM - How many people can say they have seen Radiohead with only 200 people in the room, that is so cool.
JE - I have never heard of them before but it was really fun.
TM - Is there anything else you want to say to your fans?
JE - We have been together a long time and we have had a lot of fans in Australia that have followed us from the beginning. To be able to do this for such a long time because of the support of the fans that allows us to keep putting out music. We just want to say thank you to our fans, we really appreciate your support.