The Grand Southern
Image & Video by Jan-Willem Dikkers
"IT’S NOT ALWAYS TOTALLY CLEAR WHERE THE INSPIRATION COMES FROM
WHEN WE’RE WRITING SOMETIMES. WHEN WE BRING
AN IDEA IN, WE TALK ABOUT WHAT WE’RE TRYING TO SAY AND
WHAT KIND OF FEELINGS WE GET ACROSS."
— THE GRAND SOUTHERN
The Grand Southern
The Grand Southern is an indie-folk duo with drummer Dash Hutton and guitarist Jesse Tyre from Los Angeles. They recently released their music video “Traded Heaven,” which stars American Horror Story’s Evan Peters and was directed by Blacklist star Ryan Eggold. They are releasing their second EP, Traded Heaven.
L.A.-based indie-folk-Americana duo Dash Hutton and Jesse Tyre recently released their self-titled debut EP in 2016 and are looking forward to their forthcoming EP entitled Traded Heaven. In April, The Grand Southern released their music video “Traded Heaven,” which stars Evan Peters from American Horror Story and was directed by Blacklist star Ryan Eggold.
Issue met up with the band and Jesse’s dog Rex in the Hollywood Hills, where they played a live performance of “Traded Heaven” and “Drive Me Wild.”
Where are you from?
Dash Hutton: LA
Jesse Tyre: San Francisco
How has living and working in L.A. influenced your music and growth and creativity as a band?
Three Dog Night
Three Dog Night is an American rock band formed in 1967 with vocalists Danny Hutton, Cory Wells, and Chuck Negron. They have earned 12 gold albums and recorded 21 consecutive Billboard Top 40 hits.
DH: Growing up here, this scene has always been a part of my life. My dad is the singer in Three Dog Night and the house I grew up in has a crazy musical history.
JT: When I moved to L.A. 10 years ago I remember being so amazed at the level of talent here, and also how good looking everyone is. Makes you want to be a better musician and also kill yourself at the same time.
“When I moved to LA 10 years ago
I remember being so amazed at the level of
talent here, and also how good looking
everyone is. Makes you want to be a better musician and also kill yourself at the same time.”
— Jesse Tyre
When did you start playing music?
JT: Around 9 or 10 years old.
DH: I AM MUSIC
Who influenced you growing up and who influences you today?
JT: Instead of listening to top 40 or whatever, all of the cool kids at my school listened to the Grateful Dead. It was a right of passage in the Bay Area. My folks loved Dylan and all the Motown and Stax stuff, so I tried to counterbalance that with glam rock and gangsta rap.
DH: I like a ton of stuff, sometimes new music will come out and I’ll really connect like The War on Drugs record a few years ago, or I’ll fall in love with something that’s been around for a while like John Prine, or an old Fleetwood Mac tune.
What kind of atmosphere do you try to create with your music and performances?
DH: It’s less of an atmosphere and more of an aroma.
JT: Well said.
How did you guys meet and start making music?
JT: We met 6 or 7 years ago through Dash’s friend Tommy King who actually plays keyboards and helped produce our new record.
Do you see your music as telling stories? If so, what inspires them?
JT: Definitely. It’s not always totally clear where the inspiration comes from when we’re writing sometimes. When we bring an idea in, we talk about what we’re trying to say and what kind of feelings we get across. Sometimes, like with “Sleeptalking” or “Traded Heaven,” it’s a real specific narrative, and other times it’s a bit more abstract.
DH: But they eventually reveal themselves, which is kinda cool when you figure out what your own song means like a year after you wrote it.
Who would you most like to collaborate with and why?
Ben Peeler was the former lead guitarist for the punk and alternative band The Mavericks during 1989-1991.
JT: Shel Silverstein and Sylvester Stallone. What a great album cover that would be.
Dash: Peeler, Ben Peeler.
What’s the story behind getting Evan Peters to star in ‘Traded Heaven’ video?
JT: Evan is an old friend who is really down on his luck. Career is in the shitter and he’s just so unpopular, especially with teenage girls. It’s a sad story. I didn’t want to, but Dash insisted we give the kid a break.
What’s your favorite book, film, and music right now?
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by David Eggers, Muppets take Manhattan, “Way Down in the Jungle Room” by Elvis Presley.
What are your interests and passions outside of music?
DH: Amusement Parks.
What’s next for you?
Playing some shows, riding some roller coasters, and looking forward to our EP dropping on May 30th.