Everyone remembers their first. Tell me about your first gig.
BT: My first gig was at Chain Reaction for a bunch of friends, it was a extremely fun night, but looking back god we were bad!
DH: -My first gig ever was with a past band back in High School and we were able to play UCI during ‘Rush Week’. My singer decided to paint his whole body white... that was the last show with him hahahaha
JS: Whisky-A-Go-Go, Hollywood CA. I was definitely nervous. All of my old band members were there and they happened to be my best friends at the time. My old band was super heavy… I never even really sang… just made weird groaning noises and slammed my face in the ground. That first show gave me perspective on the necessity of sounding pretty vocally live and not focusing completely on the performance. I sounded like balls… Bob was 2 weeks new and looked like a deer in headlights. David through his foot on the monitor and didn’t move. It was a bad show… but hey, it was fun and we got a ton of support. We have come great lengths since then.
What has been your most memorable gig?
BT: Playing the House of Blues for the first time because it was my dream as a kid seeing all the shows I have seen there.
DH: -First time Haster played the House of Blues Anahiem in 2012. It was goal for me since day 1 to play the House of Blues and I was a dream to play in front of all my friends and family
JS: Our second House of Blues, Anaheim show this past year. We pretty much packed the house with people from all over. I spent the better half of the night signing autographs to real fans – people that were there for HASTER that I had never met. I have never had fans before and, when we closed the curtains after playing a killer set, the crowd roared with enlivenment. They loved us. I collapsed in awe of the scene, closed my eyes, meditated, and just hought “This moment is what makes it all worth it. Enjoy this moment.” I took it in and indulged… it was amazing.
Tell us about some of the albums/songs Haster has recorded.
BT:Our first EP “Searching” came out in 2010 and we are finishing up on our first full length album.
DH: -We release our first EP “Searching” back in 2011, and have released a cover of Mumford and Sons “White Blank Page” and we’re able to release our first full length album later this year in 2013
JS: Our first EP was an adventure. I was writing the lyrics on the way to the studio, unhappy with the pages and pages of words that had spewed out of my pen. I did the same thing with Fuller, the first track we recorded for our new record (out September 2013). I was happy with the original lyrics but the day before I went to Christopher Eck’s Studio to throw down vocals on it I attended a good friend’s funeral. The guy died for no reason… just partying, loving life, and acting silly- as he always did. He jumped on a balcony and somehow fell off. The landing didn’t kill him but he passed in the hospital days later… after a period of recovery. It was out of nowhere. This guy had a stadium-sized church filled to the brim. People were forced to stand, sit in aisles, and whatever… but they were all there for this guy. He was literally the most popular, lively person on the planet. Needless to say, I rewrote the whole song on the road to the studio. It was an emotional, frantic mess. I was on the freeway driving like a maniac, tears pouring down my face, swerving through traffic with one hand and writing in a notebook in the other.
Living the Dream
I know it’s cliché to ask, but what’s it like being on stage in front of a massive crowd?
BT: It’s a blast, I personally feel more comfortable on stage than off stage watching shows now because when i’m watching a show i crave to be on stage.
DH: -You get really fired up. For me whenever we play in front of 3 people of 3,000, I feel the same and want to give the best show we can
PN: In the beginning I was naturally nervous, but after playing shows for 2 years, it feels normal. It feels like I am an athlete on the field and its time to execute everything I have worked for.
JS: It is bliss. I totally dig theater and acting… it is what I do. I just graduated with a Screen Acting Degree from Chapman University and am moving to LA to pursue that and network for HASTER. For me, the bigger the crowd… the easier it is to be myself. It’s tough to have such emotional, real content in the lyrics and have to relive them in front of 20-30 people at a dive bar. I find the audience enthralled… but my in between song demeanor is off. I feel vulnerable and awkward. The second the music hits: boom. It’s gravy… but in between? Man its tough trying to act funny/normal in front of a small crowd after virtually crying minutes earlier while singing a song about real shit. In front of a big crowd? The show becomes a spectacle… all of the clean transitions fall into place and serve as pillars for my stage-personality. Since the audience is so dense I am not singing to an individual, but rather, a giant blob of people. I can do that all day! I love it!
Everyone has that one band they would love to open for and also collaborate with. Who would be your dream band to open for?
BT: Tool or Chevelle. I look up to those bands so much, i would die to even meet them.
DH: -Tool. I would do anything to open for them
PN: The more I think about it, I would have to say Korn. I grew up with them, they are a huge influence in my writing, and my go-to for structuring song ideas. Seen them live countless times and I think we would fit right in on the same bill.
JS: If I could open for KoRn I would die a happy man. I have worshipped Jonathan Davis since I was a little kid. I remember my brother showing me A.D.I.D.A.S. off of “Life is Peachy” when I was 9 years old! JD made the anagram to mean All Day I Dream About Sex… at that age? I thought it was the coolest thing in the world. I laughed for days/weeks, told all my friends, and eventually bought all of their CDs at the Best Buy in my hometown, which had terrible ID checke-ers…. Hahah. I had no business buying KoRn at that age… but since then? Its history. I love that band… even though I don’t listen to them all the time anymore I have a deep respect. They inspired me into this business.
What venue(s) have you always dreamed of playing at?
BT: Dream places to play would be the Honda Center, Staple Center, or Madison Square Garden.
DH: -House of Blues was that, but now I’ve checked it off my Bucket List hahaha but now it’s the Honda Center here in Anaheim, CA for me
PN: San Manuel Amphitheatre in San Bernadino, home of Mayhem Fest. Main stage, after sunset, bonfires in the grassy knoll. PERFECT.
JS: The answer to this question was House of Blues, Anaheim up until I played it three times. Now? I would do terrible things to play at Club Nokia. Its such a sick little spot… great vibes, cool bar, huge standing room area and a badass sound system. You can’t go wrong!
That's all the time we have for today. Join us tomorrow for Part 3 where we have a little fun with the band and learn which members of Haster would survive a zombie apocalypse and who would end up dinner.