Apr 7, 2009


by Tiffany Edwards

Champion: How long have you been playing together and how did you meet?

Rinehart: The band’s been around now for almost 10 years, we’ve all known each other since we were kids.

Champion: What is your vision for your band? How do you plan to make that vision a reality?

Rinehart: Our vision has changed every year that we’ve been a band, as we’ve learned more and more about ourselves and what we want to be. We want to do this for the rest of our lives — we’ve kinda fallen in love with it. We feel we can do that by being a self-sustaining band, not really depending solely on radio play or a record label, even though we have those things now. We don’t have to borrow everything from labels, so that when they’re ready for us to be off the road, we don’t have to be, and we can keep doing what we want to do. Musically, we try to find fans that like who we are for what we have to say and what we’re about, and not necessarily about a certain song or individual thing, genre or fad. If we feel like we want to make a rock record, or country, or blues or an acoustic record, we want fans who will be there for that.

Champion: Where do you get your inspiration for your music?

Rinehart: All over the place. We’re southern, so that comes through a lot. We try to write as real songs as possible, about our families, relationships we’ve had in the past, our faith, and it all sort of comes together. There really isn’t any sort of declaration or set decision about our songs, it’s more about the inspiration.

Champion: Are there any songs that you were especially inspired to write with personal meaning?

Rinehart: Our current record, “Washed by the Water,” was inspired by a true story about Bo’s and my dad. It was really cool that it was accepted widely and was as successful as it was. “More Time” was in the movie “P.S. I Love You.” It kind of got a lot of use in that way, in TV and stuff like that. That was a song we had written to our families about how long it’s taken to make it in the music business. Oddly, it’s thought of as a relationship song, but it’s really derived from the fact that we were telling our families “Look, we’ll be fine soon, we’ll make enough money to get this going.”

Champion: What was the inspiration for your albums’ names?

Rinehart: “Daylight” was a song on the first record that was actually a tribute to the Johnny Cash song “Long Black Veil,” but the songs meaning was more about telling the truth no matter what the consequences will be. That was something we really faced. We we’re with a major label, and there were a lot of people around us telling us what we ought to be. We really felt like we needed to be ourselves regardless of whether it was going to make us successful. We thought that should be something we should have on our first record. “The Heat,” our second record, was an extension of that. I think we’re very proud of that record because it’s just more “us” than we’ve ever been before.

Champion: What is it like performing in front of and interacting with thousands of people in a single night?

Rinehart: Tonight, it’s really scary. We’ve been in the studio for the last four months, so we’ve barely played any shows. But that makes it exciting too, and incredibly rewarding. We try to make it real. If we enjoy it, we feel like people are going to enjoy it with us.

Champion: What are your favorite bands?

Rinehart: Probably my first major influence in trying to write were the Black Crowes — it was all that sort of roots rock stuff — I liked a lot of soulful sounds and Otis Redding. My brother was a big fan of British pop, the U2 kind of vibe. Our drummer’s a straight up rocker, like Pearl Jam and that era. It all comes together to form something unique, something that affects people.

Champion: Do you have any advice for students who want to get into the music industry?

Rinehart: Well, it depends on what area you want to get into, but for us the key has just been sticking together. The first few years we we’re doing this, we were in a 1978 GMC gypsy van with no air conditioning, traveling through Florida and breaking down all the time. All the sort of classic stories. Pretty much everyone around us thought we were crazy to keep on doing it. I think it made us a lot stronger, and built us into who we are, and I’m really proud of that.

Contact Tiffany Edwards at


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