When the interview plans fell through, Camera Can’t Lie graciously offered to conduct an interview with me anyway. I was able to chat with singer/guitarist Eric, and pianist Tim about their growing popularity and aspirations before they played Bash on the Farm in Garner, IA.
I want to thank Eric and Tim for talking with me and making this interview possible.
~ How did you get started in Camera Can’t Lie?
E: Tim and I had been playing for about four years in different bands, and this band started up last March with the addition of two new guys from the Twin Cities area in Minneapolis. Then our high school friend that had been playing bass with us, Kyle, joined. That’s how the five piece Camera Can’t Lie kind of started.
~ The band’s fan base has grown considerably since it first started. Has that popularity affected you guys at all?
T: Nothing has really changed and we definitely aren’t famous yet, but we’re still just taking it one step at a time. Being signed isn’t the end of the race. There’s plenty more to do and we still have a lot of work ahead of us.
~ How does it feel to have recently signed with a major label like Atlantic Records?
E: It’s really surreal. It’s a dream come true basically. We feel very blessed and we’re not taking this for granted. We’re certainly happy to get there and now we will hopefully see a lot more progress.
~ What goals pertaining to music have you set to accomplish within the next few years?
E: We’re going to put out a new record, and I guess as a musician and song writer, my number one goal would be to create an album that is timeless. An album that someone can put on and listen to all the way through, from track 1 to track 12, and become something that speaks to them and becomes the soundtrack to their life.
~ As the main songwriter, what is your process for writing the lyrics and melodies?
E: There’s like two different processes; sometimes I’ll be journaling and have something that’s in my heart and I want to say, and that sparks a lyric or an idea for a song, but most of the time I write a song I write the melody and then the lyrics come after. I like to write about experiences that other people have, people that are close to me, because my life is kind of boring and uneventful. I just want to be a voice for other people.
~ What theme would you say runs throughout all of your music?
E: I guess to sum it up would be a theme of hope. There’s so much evil in the world but eventually we hope that with our passion we can achieve something. You can change the world just by showing kindness and love.
~ Do you face any difficulties that come with being in a band?
E: Oh there are tons. People think that it’s really glamorous, but it’s not always. I want to do nothing but play music, and getting on stage is the best feeling I’ve ever experienced in my life, but spending six or eight hours in a van everyday, cramped and eating Taco Bell and Burger King and sleeping on people’s floor is difficult. There are guys that have long distance relationships and I think that relationship can be one of the hardest to maintain while being in a band. We sacrifice a lot to get up and go wherever we’re needed and I spend a lot of time away from home. I miss my family and have to bail on a lot of things, and that sucks, but fortunately there are people in my life that have been very understanding and supportive enough where they know that you still care about them and they would rather you be doing your dreams than sitting at home and playing it safe. We’re taking chances and putting ourselves on the line, and we just feel so blessed. We’re very lucky.
~ For first time listeners of Camera Can’t Lie, what song would you suggest they listen to first and why?
E: Losing You, it’s a song off of our EP last year, and it will be on our new record as well. It’s a song that means a lot to me personally, and it keeps us in check. We’re no one; we’re just some blessed boys. Even after signing with a major record label, nothing has really changed. We’re still the same people, and that song is about not losing sight of that, not losing sight of who you are. Next song I would go with is Dakota. Dakota’s a ballad and we’re a rock band, but it seems to be a fan favorite and it will also be on the new record.
~ Have you met anyone that has acted differently around you solely because you are in a band?
E: Yeah, it happens. It’s kind of weird, we signed the deal and you kind of see three different types of people: There are the people that truly loved you before and support you, it didn’t matter if you were famous or not; people who were your friends and you thought they were your friends and they are no longer, they think you sold out or don’t see you; and the people that want to be your friend all of a sudden and your like, “Dude, I would have been your friend three months ago.” We really don’t feel like we have changed at all, we just feel blessed. We don’t take it for granted and we’re still all about the fans.
~ Did you always aspire to be in a band?
E: When I was a kid I wanted to be a professional baseball player, but once I hit high school I just wanted to write songs and play music. My family is very musical; my mom was a piano and vocal major in college, so I started piano lessons at a very early age. Tim has been playing piano since he has been four, so he and I both wanted this career from the beginning. We weren’t really in it to settle for anything less.
~ Any advice you would like to share with Driven Far Off readers?
E: Take chances and follow your dreams. If you have a passion and you’re willing to make sacrifices and take the punches, stick with it. It doesn’t matter what the situation is financially, where your location is growing up, because everything can be overcome if you have enough drive. Meet as many nice people as you can and make as many friends as you can and just enjoy it along the way.