By Madison Thompson–
People lined up around the block of the Mercury Ballroom March 13, waiting hours to see Mayday Parade.
A band of five close knit members, Mayday Parade formed about ten years ago in sunny Tallahassee, Florida. Though they started off small, touring and selling their CD’s during the Vans Warped Tour, they now have a large, loyal fan base. Going into the Mercury Ballroom here in Louisville, I was able to catch a glimpse of just how big Mayday Parade’s fan base actually is.
I began the night by meeting Mayday Parade’s drummer, Jake Bundrick. Read our full Q&A below:
Q: So, you play drums? Do you play any other instruments other than drums?
“Yes, I play drums and I sing as well. I play guitar as well. I actually started playing guitar before I started playing drums. I play more acoustic than I do electric.”
Q: How long have you played those instruments?
“I have played guitar for about 18 years. Drums for maybe 17 years but it might be longer than that, like 19 years. I’ve have a few singing lesson here and there throughout the course of the band. I just started singing and I realized that I was in key. No one was cringing when I was singing, so that’s good.”
Q: What inspired the name Mayday Parade?
“Honestly, it was just two words put together. I really enjoyed the word Mayday. The only thing that is kind of cool about it was we were on the rooftops of a big building in Tallahassee and there was a parade going on beneath us. It was like the festival of lights or something. So we were just like, ‘Oh, Mayday Parade.’”
Q: How did you get started? How long did you try to get the band started?
“We formed from two separate bands. Each band had members that were either married or had children or weren’t great musicians so we just kind of had to boot the bad. After we rehearsed for three days and we realized we had something.”
Q: What inspires you to play music?
“I think just real life events that happen, you know? Just having a voice to write like about a loss or a breakup or a friend or something.”
Q: Do you have an inspiration album?
“Well, there’s a band balled Copeland. There’s an album they did, Beneath Medicine Tree. That’s one of my favorite records. It’s a little bit sad, but the music is good.”
Q: What is the most inspirational album you all have written?
“I think it would be our most recent album, Black Lines. It’s kind of one we decided we wanted to go outside the box and see what we were capable of. All of us matured a little bit because it’s a little darker. A curve ball almost for our fans. I also think the songs are good. We also wanted to know what was going to take us to our next steps. We decided a record like this was the way to go.”
Q: What’s the theme of your latest album, Black Lines?
“I guess you could say it’s all of the things you wanted to say. Like, say it’s all of the things you wanted to write down but they weren’t good enough because, you know, maybe they’re too mean, so you cross them out. There’s no real specific meaning behind it.”
“There’s also a really cool subliminal thing with it (the album cover). If you look at it and turn it once clockwise, it actually makes an M. P. for Mayday Parade.”
Q: You all have been bouncing around a lot during this tour, basically a show every night. Where are you all headed next?
“I don’t know (ha-ha). I usually don’t know, I just know where I end up. Yeah, we’re going into North Carolina and then to Maryland, then to Michigan and Wisconsin.”
Q: Where are you most excited to go?
“On this tour, there’s actually a festival in Las Vegas and, obviously, it’s Las Vegas. You know? It’s always fun to do shows there. It’s a big festival on the main stage.”
Q: How do you cope with so much travel?
“It’s kind of a day by day thing. I mean I have time to call home to my wife. See how she’s doing, see how the dog is doing. We drink, we have fun. We’re actually out with The Maine right now. They’re good friends of ours so you don’t feel like you’re away from home. You just feel like you’re hanging out with a bunch of friends.”
Q: Do you have any tricks for travel?
“I don’t know. I just started watching The Entourage. I’m late on the game with Entourage. I don’t know. You find things to get you through the day. Practicing guitar, vocals or drums. Or we play some video games. My favorite is Fifa 16, and I’m a Halo fan as well. We’ve also really been into Face Swap recently.”
Q: Where do you see yourself and the band in the next few years?
“We’re always writing. We usually end up writing and then going and compiling all of our ideas. I’m sure we will definitely come out with another record. Probably touring a lot more.”
Q: What is something you have never been asked that you would like to be asked?
“That question. I have never been asked that question (ha-ha). Uh… No one’s really asked what kind of kind of cologne I wear or what kind of toothpaste I use or how often I change my toothbrush.”
Q: What do you think about Kentucky? What about the city of Louisville? Is it your first time?
“No, It’s not my first time. I think we’ve been here three times and, honestly, every time we’ve been here we’ve been at a different venue and then we’re confined to that area. I don’t remember the others, but I know this one is the nicest we’ve been in so far.”
Q: How do you all write your music? Do you do it as a group or more individual and then everyone comes together?
“We’ll do it individually and we’ll do it as a group. We’ll have, like, five ideas and we’ll all meet up somewhere and rehearse to go over the ideas. Then we basically critique it, heavily. ‘I don’t like the chords,’ ‘I don’t like this verse,’ ‘I don’t like this melody,’ all those kinds of things. Eventually we conform it into something you would want to record. Then the producer will rip it apart. While that’s going on, people are still writing so new guitar parts can come in and out. It’s a pretty big process until the end and then it’s done.”
Q: Who are your musical influences?
“I grew up listening to Green Day and Foo Fighters and bands like that. Those were some of my favorite bands. I know our band collectively likes Take Back Sunday, Queen, Oasis, Guns n’ Roses. It’s a plethora of stuff. It’s very eclectic.”
Q: What drum kit are you using?
“I have my own kit with my own cymbals and hardware and everything. It’s an acoustic kit, the ‘real kit’. It’s from SJC drums and I play Zoltan cymbals, DW hardware.”
Q: Are you all working on anything right now?
“We actually are always writing. Some things have been sent over to the group. There’s ideas flowing.”
Q: Planes? Trains? Automobiles? How are you getting from place to place?
“Yeah, we have a tour bus. It took me a plane to get to the tour bus.”
Q: Anything you want to add?
“Follow us on social media. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Like us and thanks for all the support.”