PopWrapped caught up with Brian Dales from The Summer Set at Warped Tour 2014. Brian shared with us what it was like to start at an indie label and now be signed with Fearless Records, and also gave us some insight into what gives The Summer Set their summer sound. Check it out, below!
Zachary Jaydon: You guys have been around; This is not your first rodeo, for sure. Talk to me about today. What has changed 2007 to 2014?
Brian Dales: We started as a band in 2007… first Warped Tour in 2010. This is actually our third Warped Tour now, first Warped Tour that we’ve done on main stage. It’s been really cool, this has just been the best summer... our show tonight isn’t until 6:15. But if you really want to talk about Warped Tour… I snuck away last night… out to my friend’s house and stayed at the beach and got to hang out by the ocean. So, today doesn’t feel like Warped Tour at all. Today’s been awesome.
ZJ: So this day’s been the best day of Warped Tour ever?
BD: Today is basically the best day of Warped Tour I’ve ever had... I think what I’ve learned most about Warped Tour in all of the years we’ve done it, and now as a Warped Tour veteran per se, I take a shower every day. So, I figure it out. That’s been really impressive.
ZJ: You guys have changed labels three times since the band’s inception. How do you feel about where you are right now? Do you believe in the saying that everything happens for a reason?
BD: I kinda do believe that, in the sense that, [when we started] in 2007 we had no idea what we were doing, we didn’t even have a manager and we signed to this indie label called Militia Group when we were still in high school. The label ended up disbanding, we had no personal issues or that kind of thing - in fact it introduced me to two of my best friends, so no animosity there. We ended up putting two records out on a label called Razor & Tie, had a great relationship… Eventually it was time on both ends for us to part ways and move on... [and now we’re with] Fearless Records, the last 15 months since Legendary came out have been the best 15 months we’ve ever had. I feel like every day we put together a better and better team… so I do think everything happens for a reason. We’ve been through the wringer more than any other band and we’ve survived, which I think I want other bands to know that you can make a lot of mistakes in a row and still power through them. So I feel proud about that.
ZJ: And you should. As far as songs of the summer go, no pun intended, you kind of have created something like that, a summer sound. Especially during summer, it seems like top 40 radio goes totally crazy with you guys. Do you set out to create a fun, summery vibe or is that just something that seems to come naturally?
BD: A little bit of both; it seems to happen. My whole life i’ve always just wanted to be a songwriter… my family raised me on a lot of great music and I think it rubbed off on me... I’ve always wanted to have a song that connects with everyone. We’ve made two records now [on non-indie labels] and the first one had a certain sense of energy and the second one we kind of strayed … into this other side with Legendary, we realized there was something about the energy we have as a band, especially in our live shows... and with Warped Tour I think we’ve really found the energy that this band encompasses. After all, we are The Summer Set, so if I get to have the song of the summer one of these years, then I’ll be happy forever.
ZJ: What’s next for you?
BD: Warped Tour ends in a week, which is crazy. It feels like this one went faster than all the other ones. As far as songwriting, I think we’re going to make a new record in the fall, which I'm very excited about. I'm always writing songs, I’ve been writing since Legendary came out last year...I think it keeps me well-practiced as a songwriter to write lots of different styles of songs. I think it helps me grow as an artist to write a lot of different things. So, I'm really excited to make a record. I already have a ton of songs to choose from… I think it will be a really good time.
ZJ: Can you tell us anything else about the record?
BD: Unfortunately, there’s nothing else really to tell. We’re in just the earliest stages. I'm the kind of person where I don’t care if we make a record in 15 days or in 9 months. I'm not really in a rush. I don’t know how long it will take, but I’d love to get a record out before the two year anniversary of Legendary, which will be in April 2015…
ZJ: Do you have anything that you want to tell the fans who have supported you over the years at Warped Tour?
BD: What I love about the Warped Tour is that we see familiar faces. Not just over the spectrum of members of other bands, but we see the same people come out to three or four shows in a row, and we’ll do two shows in a day and they come to both of them. That’s dedication, and it’s the reason we were fortunate enough to win the rising star competition last year. That was so much bigger than us, that was was the Summer Set fans pouring in so much energy. So thank you for the best year and half we’ve had. And I'm excited because I know it’s only getting better from here.