Photo by Travis Shinn
For this latest edition of the Bandsintown, Hypebot, CelebrityAccess "6 Questions With" series, we caught up with Chris Vos, the singer, and guitarist for The Record Company, during a break in the band’s extensive summer and fall tour.
Your most recent album “Play Loud” was a bit of a departure with the addition of producer Dave Sardy (Oasis, Wolfmother, Modest Mouse, LCD Soundsystem). How did it feel to share control of your distinct and carefully crafted sound?
It felt wonderful. We have always self-produced up until Play Loud. We were all ready to hear some new sounds, learn, and grow. We have been a band for ten years so it felt like a good time to open ourselves up to working with an experienced producer.
Dave brought a lot of perspective and a ton of knowledge with him. He also challenged us to push ourselves to new places. It was a very rewarding experience. In the end, it is still your record. So no matter how much you evolve you have to believe in it. You have to love every moment and be able to stand behind it.
The whole recording experience with Dave was illuminating, a great time of learning and discovery. Having the opportunity to just think about the music and not the process of recording was freeing. It provided room for us to find new sounds and have a chance to focus just on the writing and the emotion of playing.
You did a few livestreams during the pandemic. How was that experience and do you see continuing to do any now that live shows are returning?
They were a fun way to get that emotion out and play some music. I enjoyed them very much given the fact that we couldn’t be on tour. Nothing replaces a live performance with an audience for me though. I want that moment of connection where the band and the audience all are moving as one. That uplifts me.
I crave the live experience both as an artist and a fan of music. I love it very much and I never want to stop having those experiences in my life.
The band has played quite a few live shows starting last fall. What was it like being on stage after being off the road for a year? Are the fans reacting any differently?
I have always played by the mantra of play like it is one less show in your life, not one more.
That motivates me and keeps the gratitude for the experience at a high level. Now, coming back, that feeling has been amplified even higher. The spring tour we just did was fantastic, almost dreamlike. People are so excited and ready to have that live experience again. Audiences are as engaged as I have ever seen them. When we are playing and I see people smiling and dancing, it fills me with both joy and love.
I want to do my best, always. Music fans who give an artist their time are giving that artist a great gift. I never want to waste that opportunity. I want to go as deep as I can and find something new in every performance.
The current tour includes Europe plus months of dates in the US. Are there any venues or cities that you’re particularly looking forward to?
I am looking forward to them all. Anytime we go to Europe it is a great cultural and emotional learning experience. You see so much from which to draw inspiration. You also learn that music fans are, at their core, the same everywhere. I love that. I love the unifying power in a live show. I need it, and I think all people who love music probably do too.
When you’re on the road do you have routines, habits, or “must-have” items in the dressing room?
Absolutely. As a singer, I will spend most of the day really focusing on hydrating, especially if I had a couple of celebratory post-show beverages the night before. Having a routine is very helpful to allow me to know where my voice is at on any given day. About 45 minutes before a performance I start warming up my voice. I have a couple of songs I listen to and sing with once the vocal warm-up is done. This both motivates me spiritually and allows for me to physically get in tune with where my vocal range is that night. I also am careful to not eat a big meal within two hours of showtime.