Youthful summer vibes: A conversation with almost monday

The band members of indie pop group almost monday perform in June 2022 at the Governors Ball Music Festival, with members Luke, Cole, and Dawson (from left to right) on their respective instruments. Photo courtesy of author

Almost monday made their debut in 2020 as a three-piece indie pop group. I had the pleasure of sitting down with the trio following the release of their singles “sunburn” and “sun keeps on shining.” They are chill, confident and ready to put a smile on your face with their summer-pop.

Can you please introduce yourselves?

D: I’m Dawson and I sing and play the guitar.

C: I’m Cole and I play the guitar.

L: I’m Luke and I play bass.

Let’s take you back to your past. I know Dawson and Cole started in a church band. What was that like? 

D: Not many other things will let you get up on stage and be bad. You gotta get up there anyways and stumble through it. It was a good training ground to be able to perform now, even though it is different.

C: They let you get on stage as a little kid who can’t play guitar well. It was helpful to get some experience.

When did you all meet each other? 

L: In high school when we were around 15. 

And how are your parents involved in your music?

D: Our parents are big supporters. My parents are actually watching the live stream tonight. 

C: I think that one of the biggest blessings in my life is having parents that really care about what I’m passionate about.

The author interviews the band members of rising indie pop group almost monday with Dawson, Cole, and Luke pictures from left to right. Photo courtesy of author

When did you know that you wanted to play your instruments? 

D: For me, it was pretty immediate of falling in love with music. Once I started playing and singing, I really loved doing it. I definitely started early.

C: My parents have been taking me to concerts since I was like a baby. So I’ve been going to shows most of my life. And then I started playing that game Guitar Hero when I was in middle school. I got really good at that game. And I was like, I kind of want to do the real one now. So then I started playing real guitar.

L: For me, it was a gradual thing. I had always loved music, but always for fun or as a hobby.  I never thought it would get to this level. So it’s pretty, pretty awesome that we get to travel.

It must have been nerve wracking to release your first EP. What was it like, letting go of control of it once it was out? 

D: A lot of artists talk about this when you put out a song. There’s this very strange feeling of sadness … you put it out and you’re excited for people to hear it. But it’s also not your little secret anymore and you’re really opening it up to other people.

(Luke had to step aside due to a nosebleed.)

After you met up in high school, you started doing singing competitions, right?

D: I did a few, and in the sixth grade I won the talent show and that was a big turning point for me in my career. [laughs] 

C: I just played in bands and played guitar.

Speaking of your childhood, didn’t your (Dawson’s) grandparents fund an album?

D: Yeah, I did a little EP. My grandparents gave me around $2,000 for a studio engineer to record it. It’s a very humble record. Don’t look it up. 

C: Dawson Daughtery on Spotify. 

Singer and guitarist Dawson Daughetry performs at Gov Ball in the summer of 2022 with bassist Luke Fabry in the background. Photo provided by author

In “come on come on,” you say that you would take a 4Runner to Mexico. If you had to take a 4Runner to anywhere that’s not Mexico, where would you go?

C: Honestly, Japan. But, I wouldn’t take a 4Runner anywhere because they break down super easy, so I sold mine. But I know that doesn’t make sense, so maybe put it on a surfboard.

Mediums influence mediums. What are some films you’ve watched that have influenced your music?

D: We’re all big fans of “Lost in Translation.” I like Ferris Bueller. 

One of your music videos also references Spongebob Squarepants. 

L: We were in a jacuzzi trying to figure out what we should do for a music video. Dawson or someone jokingly brought something up … a lot of really good ideas come from jokes. There’s so much media to consume in general. So, it was hard to pinpoint what exactly is a direct influence but I think you know, just like in different music every week.

A common theme in your music is optimism. For example, in “broken people,” we’re all screwed up, but we still gotta make it work together. Where does this optimism come from and why do you bring it into your music? 

D: I think it comes from a natural place because it’s never intentional. I think we ended up getting in the writing room. It’s an extension of who we are, in a way. I think we’ve just been super fortunate to be in a band and make music and grow up in an amazing place. It all just kind of comes out naturally.

Singer and guitarist Dawson Daughertry performs on the stage of the 2022 Governors Ball Music Festival with Cole Clisby on the drums. Photo provided by author

Within the past two or three years, you guys have gone through a lot. A pandemic, the release of two EPs, festivals, touring. Does that rate of change come off as scary? 

D: I guess there’s been a lot of stuff in the world going on. It’s been scary, like outside of music. But in terms of our music and careers and stuff like it’s been, we’ve been moving at a good pace recently, which has been really nice. 

C: It’s interesting to hear how technology has advanced and then things like TikTok come along. That wasn’t a thing at all when we started the band and now it’s such a big thing.

What have you learned as a result of traveling? 

D: In Argentina, we had to be very attentive to the crowds. They would smush together so much that they would say, ‘Stop the show to help people.’ And I genuinely thought that people were just stoked. So I learned to be very attentive to crowds when you have a language barrier and just really make sure people are okay. 

L: Make sure you’re getting enough sleep. Stay hydrated, especially in hot places. 

Lastly, what’s next for almost monday?

D: Arenas, stadiums, top 10 records. 

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