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May 28, 2022

Interview with Hoodie Allen

We had the pleasure of interviewing Hoodie Allen over Zoom video!

Hoodie Allen reveals the first track debuting his alternative pop-rock emergence, “Wouldn’t That Be Nice.” Driven by the emotions of heartbreak, the emo track showcases Hoodie...

We had the pleasure of interviewing Hoodie Allen over Zoom video!

Hoodie Allen reveals the first track debuting his alternative pop-rock emergence, “Wouldn’t That Be Nice.” Driven by the emotions of heartbreak, the emo track showcases Hoodie Allen’s musical abilities and smashes down preconceptions from his previous releases. Coinciding with the song is an elaborate, cinematic music video portraying the beginning of the upcoming album’s storyline.

The track is anthemic in its emotional peaks and valleys much like the up and down nature of the relationship it speaks to. The soft start builds into a powerful punk-inspired melody that exemplifies the emotional waves throughout his upcoming album, making it an ideal preview of Hoodie’s new direction:

“Wouldn’t That Be Nice felt like the first single because this is the first time I’m really giving people a storytelling album and it felt like there couldn’t be anywhere to start except the beginning of the end. It’s about the feeling of still holding on even though there’s so much wrong that has transpired. I want to open people up to this world I’ve created and I think Wouldn’t That Be Nice showcases all the highs and lows and the range of dynamics. Therefore, it is the perfect appetizer for what’s to come.” - Hoodie Allen

Hoodie Allen delivers heartbreak-inspired emo hooks in the latest iteration of his ever-evolving musical journey. His upcoming eight-track album weaves between infectious pop melodies juxtaposed with punk guitar riffs. A sonic departure from his usual playful raps, the record takes listeners on a highly personal journey of the messiness that befalls a breakup. The alternative pop-punk emergence isn’t completely unexpected, however, as Hoodie has previously toured with the likes of Fall Out Boy, opened for Panic at the Disco & Twenty One Pilots, and collaborated with Mark Hoppus (of Blink 182) and State Champs.

The Brooklyn-based indie musician became an independent sensation when he first formally arrived in 2009. Without a label or management, his 2012 EP All American landed in the Top 10 of Billboard’s Top 200, delivering 2 platinum singles, and eventually moving over 250,000 units. His mainstream success led to a collaboration with Ed Sheeran in 2014, which garnered buzz from MTV, Buzzfeed, Billboard, and more. Now he is poised to break all preconceptions with his next genre-shifting release, which was co-written and produced with The Wreck’s Nick Anderson. Hoodie’s fun-loving yet vulnerably honest take on alternative rock is fueled by his long-time love of punk rock and guaranteed to strike a chord with anyone looking for a vibrant summer soundtrack.
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What's going on? It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieved stardom. On this episode, we had the incredible opportunity to hang out with hoodie Allen over zoom video hoodie. Allen was born and raised on long island and he talks about how he got into music. He was a very gifted child. He went to a gifted school up until eighth grade and while he was at this school, he wrote a lot of lyrics. He just talked about writing different wraps. He was huge into hip hop when he was attending college. One of the songs he released ended up going number one on hype machine, which was like the pinnacle pre Spotify. 3 (2m 6s): When blogs were a huge deal. Like if you were number one on high machine, it was like life-changing. So he does that all while scoring a job at Google. So he moves to Silicon valley, but he's kind of taking meetings with major labels in different record people. He talks to us about the moment when he went in and gave up his job at Google to really pursue music full time. We learn about the success of all American collaborating with huge artists like ed Sheeran and all about this new sound and new record, which is a concept album. The music video kind of goes over the concept of the record, but it's more of this Ault punk pop punk vibe. 3 (2m 48s): He worked with Mark Hoppus on the record. We hear about that and we hear all about the new single wouldn't that be nice. You can watch our interview with hoodie Allen on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. It would be awesome if you subscribe to our channel like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Tik TOK at bringing back pod. And if you're listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be amazing if you follow us there as well and hook us up with a five-star review. 4 (3m 16s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 3 (3m 22s): We're bringing it backwards with hoodie Allen. Well, I appreciate it, man. I I'm super excited to talk to you. I'd love the, a new song that you have coming out and just like the whole change in sound. It's so sick. 5 (3m 34s): Thanks, man. I super appreciate you taking the time to chat. This is, this is my first interview podcasts. I don't, I don't know how, how we define this, but this is my first one for the new music, so 3 (3m 48s): Awesome. I feel honored. 5 (3m 50s): Will I be rusty? I don't know. We'll let's let's we'll see what happens. 3 (3m 54s): It's a conversation. Less of ask you a question and we elaborate for five seconds on it. 5 (4m 1s): Perfect. Yeah, no, I mean, I forgot how to have conversations throughout the last two years of 3 (4m 7s): Exactly 5 (4m 7s): In isolation. You're like what are conversations? So yeah, no, I appreciate it. That 3 (4m 12s): Cool. Cool. Awesome. Well, I always start off with born and raised you're from New York. Is that 5 (4m 17s): Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I still live in New York. I grew up in the suburbs outside of New York city and I live in Brooklyn now. 3 (4m 24s): Okay. Tell me about growing up in New York. I mean, I know you have pretty much access to a lot of, a lot of places via, you know, the subways and everything. Was that a pretty freeing experience? I would think, 5 (4m 35s): Well, I mean, I grew up in a more neighborhoody, you know, a lot of back yard and you're got to 3 (4m 43s): Go 5 (4m 44s): To places now, you know, 3 (4m 46s): That's my growing up. So that's cool. Cause I, I don't understand city life, man. 5 (4m 50s): Well, I mean I love city life. That's been, that's been my life for the last, you know, decade plus where you can go to the street corner and get a deli sandwich from anywhere. And you know, New York city is like the most walkable city, I think maybe like technically the most walkable city in the world. So, I mean, I love that aspect of just being able to go everywhere whenever you want kind of by foot. But yeah, I mean, I, I think I had a pretty typical upbringing, but New York has always had such a, you know, like being so close to the city, kind of provided a really interesting music scene. And also, you know, where I grew up in long island specifically had a very specific emo music scene. 3 (5m 30s): That's huge. I mean, it's taking 5 (5m 31s): Back Sunday, MV on the coast and like that's brand new. Exactly. So I'm, I'm, I'm 33. So I mean, it lines up perfectly when I'm like 17, 16 years old. So I mean, it was kind of, 3 (5m 46s): That's amazing. I grew up in San Diego and I'm 37. So like I'm a little older than you, but that was the scene. I like, I love that. That's actually why I started this podcast was solely to interview people in that. And then my wife's like, yeah, that would be cool. But you know, what else would be cool is like actually having a ton of people that would be willing to talk to you aside from like the handful of bands that are in that John, 5 (6m 8s): I mean, you're living the dream man, San Diego. That's probably one of my favorite places in the, I mean, how can you be upset any day in San Diego? I was just like, 3 (6m 17s): This is great. 5 (6m 18s): And sunny. 3 (6m 20s): I mean, I recently moved to Nashville, so it's, I'm taking quite a different, different as far as the weather goes a little bit different, but man, we love it. We love it here. 5 (6m 30s): So 3 (6m 32s): That's awesome. So you grew up in long island, you said it in a more of a suburb so, well, how did you, how'd you get into music? I mean, from reading about you, I know you're incredibly smart, so I'd love to hear kind of that piece of your world, but how did you get into music? 5 (6m 45s): Aye. Aye, aye. Aye. Someone must've edited my Wikipedia if they said I was smart, but I'll, I'll take it. 3 (6m 51s): Did you work at Google or am I totally screwing myself here? 5 (6m 54s): No, you're right. I'm just, I'm deflecting from a compliment that makes me uncomfortable. No, I'm just using, I, I started music. I mean, hip hop was sort of my first, you know, alongside everything else that Bob was sort of the first thing that I, that made me want to make music. Like I, I started almost before I even really understood what I was doing. I would write these like raps, afterschool, both my parents worked. So like, you know, I, I would like go to their office after school and have nowhere to be. There's no one to watch me. So like, I just feel like they took me away in this room and I would just like go and be creative, I guess not really prompted by anything. Cause I didn't grow up in a very like music is everywhere and everywhere I house, it just, it must've been something sort of innate. 5 (7m 41s): So I, I was writing these songs before I really knew what they were and then kind of started, you know, as your musical pallet expands via MTV or at the time like early internet and my space sort of things you start like discovering stuff. I was discovering a lot of underground hip hop at the time and really took a liking to just the storytelling aspect of, of that sort of music. And before I knew it, you know, I was downloading beats from like, which I doubt exists anymore. Maybe it does. If they do shout out to, 3 (8m 14s): They were actually based in San Diego. It was funny. Yeah. A couple of friends that worked there and it was like, what is this? I remember when it came out and people are like, it's the new way of like music. It was a trip. 5 (8m 25s): You just, I would find, I find free beats wherever I could. And, and just, you know, I had like a, a microphone that I got at radio shack probably for like $19. And I downloaded a version of a program called cool edit pro. 3 (8m 40s): Remember cool-headed 5 (8m 41s): Everyone on the internet could get cool edit pro as a, like a, what is it called when you like, basically steal something? But 3 (8m 49s): Is it, I don't 5 (8m 51s): Know if it was from Turin or you like a cracked version, like this was Yeah. Yeah. So I may or may not have gotten that, not looking to like, you know, incriminate myself cool at it pro but 3 (9m 6s): Yeah, 5 (9m 6s): They're going to come after me. The lawyers are coming after me, but yeah, that's how I started kind of putting together these like very rudimentary versions of raps or songs. And, you know, as, as you start, as you keep going with it at first, you're sort of like imitating the things that you find and then eventually, you know, your own style. If you keep up with something like a lot of times, you know, you can kind of develop your own style from a mix of your influences and, you know, develop your own path. And I don't know, somewhere along the way I was making something that people actually were like, this isn't half bad. And then you're like, oh, intrinsic motivation. Let's go. 5 (9m 47s): I feel validated. And you know, before you know it, that became like my, the thing that I love the most just creating, you know, the idea of creating something from scratch. And at the end of the day you had this thing, this tangible like song. So yeah, that's kinda how everything started. 3 (10m 2s): When did you start actually like putting the songs together to the extent of like being able to like upload them online or shown to people? Do you remember that? 5 (10m 10s): I think it was like 12, 12 or 13 years old. Yeah. But like those songs had never really like those songs are under mysterious anonymous. <inaudible> that I'm not really interested in breaking publicly because you know, they're, they're quite embarrassing, but yeah. I mean the first time I was like uploading songs, like I remember this, it was like, there was a forum called rap. I want to say it was called rap And people would like, not only talk about like, it was like a, there's like a message board, but like people wouldn't only even talk about stuff they liked. They would also like collaborate with other users on there or share their music and try to get like feedback from other people. 5 (10m 53s): And like, I, I must have spent like two hours a day on that place and I would upload to like, not even SoundCloud, there was a version of something called before SoundCloud was like, sound clicked. I'm dating myself. We're we're, we're getting very old time here, but yeah, I love it. Share it, share the music and people would be like, the flow is okay. The quality is bad. Dah, dah, dah five out of 10. And you'd be like, all right, five out of 10 from random user. And then just, you know, 3 (11m 20s): Oh, like, I mean, getting feedback like that, you that's the hardest thing. Right. You're putting out songs. You're like, does anyone care? Like what can I work on? Like what can I work on here? And people telling you that you're taking feedback right, right there, 5 (11m 33s): For sure. And it was, it was like, it was very interesting because all my other friends and like the kids in my high school, like at the time, like I'm coming in freshman year, like obviously the, like we're in the, we're kind of in peak emo stage world at the time, there was like a place called the temple that everyone wants you for shows. And it's just, you know, everyone had everyone had a band. Everyone had a MySpace battle of the bands every month. And like, those were my friends, but I was doing something a little bit non-traditional to that. And nobody was like, if at least it felt like nobody was rapping. Like you'd have like a kid in another nearby town and be like, oh, he raps too. You guys should battle each other. But like, for the most part, you know, bands dominated the scene Before long, you know, I started sort of incorporating that and working with, you know, my friends who were getting signed to local band labels or kind of, you know what I mean? 5 (12m 25s): Like the, it was, everything was kind of like emerging at the time and definitely influenced sort of like the soundscape of like what I was thinking about and not making it just only hip hop, but like being, you know, I grew up my thing, my first CD I ever bought was like an offspring CD. So like, it was always like a sort of split like left. Right. And genre of the things that I was like gravitating towards. 3 (12m 50s): Did you play in abandoned or anything like that? Like when that whole scene was kind of emerging or are you only really focusing on like hip hop? 5 (12m 57s): I was, I was more so focusing on hip hop. Like I took guitar lessons for a couple of years and I was just, I was just so bad at it. I felt like, oh, this isn't like, this doesn't come natural to me. But like writing always was so intuitive. Like I just loved writing. So I kind of stuck with it on that end and was like, I'll let the people who are good at guitar and drums do that. So I, I remember doing like a couple of like battle of the bands where I would like fill in as the vocalist. But again, I was, it was very amateur hour, which I guess is the name 3 (13m 26s): You got to start somewhere, right? Like you went to a gifted high school. Is that what I saw on? 5 (13m 33s): Well, no, I went to, I went to public high school, but before that I was in, yeah, from up until like, like for second to eighth grade, I was in a very alternative school program. That's like, I don't really know that it exists in other places. I'm sure it does. But yeah, it was basically as a very little kid. I was, I don't know. I was being a mixture of doing too much and being disruptive to the class in the sense where I would like finish, I would like finish the exam and then be like, let me go finish other people's exams. I don't know what was wrong with me, but then eventually it was cool. It was like, Hey, maybe there's this other place that like, they it's like 12 person classes and it's super advanced. 5 (14m 19s): And like, I was like giving me homework. Like I was very well, 3 (14m 22s): It sounds like you were just super smart and then we're getting bored, like, okay, 5 (14m 27s): I think I was a little bit bored and there was this program. So it was, it was very interesting because that whole school, which is, was great. It was, it was very interesting experience also sort of, you know, you're not in with all the other kids, you kind of like develop your own path is kind of where I started. That is where I started writing music as well for myself. So like you kind of almost in some weird way, I don't know if I've ever thought about it like this, but by not being in like, sort of the, the mainstream environment, you know, at like 9, 10, 11, you kind of like really do get a chance to hone in and develop like the things that are like interesting to you. And I guess for me, that was the music. So it's, yeah. It's kind of weird how that took shape. 5 (15m 9s): I don't really give it credit, but yeah. 3 (15m 11s): Well that is really interesting to think about because you aren't being pulled in different outside influences or what your friends kind of like doing what your friends like to do because they're doing it to kind of fit in with that clicks. No, no, no, but you've like, you're, you're stuck with these clicks almost. Cause like I hung out with kids at school that I didn't hang out with. When I got home, I was like, I wasn't the same kind of group of friends, but like when you're there, you kind of have to play ball as sorry, as far as like, you know, don't want to look like, I dunno, kids are mad, 5 (15m 46s): Social pressures of being, I don't think that ever changes is being like a, a teen or preteen. Like, you know, they're, whatever your friends are doing are going to be what you're doing. Like, I remember defiantly being like the only person who like didn't play Pokemon and like we'll poke him. I was definitely come 360 where it's very cool again. But like at the time, like I was a loser, I wasn't, no, it was cool. I was not playing, but they were like, you don't play Pokemon, like what's wrong with you? 3 (16m 15s): I 5 (16m 15s): Don't know. I'm just not, I'm just not into it. So, you know, it's very easy to get pulled into the direction of what everyone else is doing. And, and like, it's like, when do those things that you love really? Like what age do they develop and, and take shape. And like when they do, do you hone them? And like, I feel like when we see people who, this is not me talking about myself, but when we see people who are like, virtuosos are like, oh, Taylor swift at like 16 is like signing a record deal. Like that's only possible because she realized that eight or I dunno, don't know exactly like early on like, oh, I love this. And I'm like, it's like, if you don't start then in some sense, it's like, there's someone else who's like figuring out their they're passionate, like age nine and 3 (17m 2s): No, you're, you're so right. And it's interesting cause I've done so many of these interviews, like a lot of people come from homeschooling or private schooling or just because, and then you'll see, oh wow. They had so much time to focus on the one thing that they knew they really wanted to do. Like a buddy of mine plays drums for Jayden. And he filled in for machine kind of Kelly. He's played with a bunch of people and he started playing drums at two and then just did privates every homeschool, his whole life, because all he knew was I'm going to play drums and that's all I really care about. And then at 16 he's touring, but it's because he, you know, if you know what you want to do and you can kind of lock into it and you don't have the other distractions like Taylor, Swift's a great example of that. 5 (17m 42s): I know that guy, he looks really cool on Instagram. He's killing it. 3 (17m 45s): Oh, you do Tosh. He's a great man. He's a great dude. Yeah. I love him. He's such a cool, cool person 5 (17m 51s): He played for. I don't know if he still is playing for an artist named Carly Hanson. Who's 3 (17m 56s): Oh yeah, 5 (17m 58s): That's right. That's where I discovered I'm like I've seen them together and stuff. Yeah. 3 (18m 2s): Oh cool. Yeah. Actually that's where I discovered him too. I interviewed Carly Hanson and when I watched her set, they were opening for bad sons. And I'm like, who is this guy on the drums? Like he just, it was like, it blew my mind because I grew up in San Diego and blink was like the band. They are from the same town I grew up in. And I remember when I first saw Travis Barker, when he, when he took over for Scott Rainer on drums, I'm like, whoa, like this band just like elevated so far just by changing the drummer. And then it was the same thing. When I saw Tasha, I was like, oh my gosh, this guy like is Travis Barker. He reminds me of Travis Barker at, when I first saw him 5 (18m 36s): That, that transition. I'm trying to remember that. That was dude ranch to 3 (18m 41s): Stay. 5 (18m 41s): Right? Yeah. Very I, the, the younger myself did not really understand. I was like, oh, there's a new, there's a new person. Oh, got it. Cool. 3 (18m 50s): Well, what's crazy is not to go off on a blink tangent, but 5 (18m 53s): Was going up a blink tangent. 3 (18m 57s): Like they, so they recorded in of the state with Scott Rainer on the drums. And then Travis went back in and read, did all the parts. So like, if, even if you watch American pie at the end, like he's, Rainer's credited as like in the movie, but he's not in the film. And then the version of, I think they put mud or something off and I'm gonna stay in the wreck in the, in the actual movie. It's the old one. It's the old version. You can hear the difference. Like I think on YouTube, you can find all the demos and it's like so crazy to listen to what he did. And then you hear Travis and it's like, oh wow, what a different song? 5 (19m 33s): That's some really good blink trivia right there to use the demo version of this. Like that's 3 (19m 43s): Blank 5 (19m 45s): With it. I don't, I don't know if I'm allowed to say this or not, or I don't know if it's a secret or whatever, but I, I got the chance to write with a mark on this upcoming album, which is, was a very, did you already know that? I don't know. 3 (19m 58s): I didn't know that don't worry. This will come out after the song drops that I was already told, like you will that really? 5 (20m 5s): No, no worries. No, I appreciate it. But that was one of the, I mean, most unbelievable, like full circle life moments. And you obviously, I mean, he's a wonderful guy, but you, you just, you, I don't think there's been many moments where I've wanted to like fan out in a meeting a musician, I think even musicians or like athletes will talk about this. It's like musicians never like freak out in front of other musicians, but like, you can meet like your favorite, like quarterback or something. And it's like, oh cool. Cause, cause you like do something different, but I definitely like, felt like I was, you know, working in his studio being like, how, like, how is this like a real 3 (20m 47s): Thing pinch me? Like, am I 5 (20m 50s): Like, how, how could you explain this to like the kid who spent so much time with those albums for so long and reading the liner notes and like, just, I remember like, just like, like I just have those vivid memories, like laying on my bed and like reading every lyric and I don't know. It's, it's cool. And it's just wild to think about sometimes 3 (21m 8s): That's so rad. Yeah. I definitely want to talk about the new record for sure. I just want to real quick, just kinda recap how you kind of got to where you are now with, you got a job at Google, right? Like out of college and you were, would you move to Silicon valley or something or San Francisco? 5 (21m 25s): Yeah, it did. I moved, I moved right to their, their main headquarters, which is based in non-interview like, right, right. That San Francisco. Yeah. It was, it was pretty wild because I did plan to move my entire life there. And like before I even had a bed in like my apartment situated in San Francisco, I'd already gotten these like two calls from record labels. It was a record label and a publishing company being like, we want to fly you back out and like have a meeting. And really obviously, as my story goes, like I ended up doing everything independently, but it just kind of speaks to like, how divide that like, like just you think you're starting this new life and like, okay, this is, this is what it's going to be. And I'm so excited to move out here and do a job. 5 (22m 7s): And then like, Nope, music and music kept being like dividing the attention back in. So I kind of knew even from the moment I started there, that there was going to be some like big decisions that had to be made in terms of like what my path was going to be. 3 (22m 24s): So you already kind of had a, obviously had the attention of people at this point. So what, when did 5 (22m 29s): I had one song? I had one song that like, well, I didn't have one song, but I had one song that was like doing something on the internet, which was called you are not a robot. And it was like a song that's sampled a marina and the diamonds song called I am not a robot. Very me. And yeah, it just, it kinda, I don't even remember like where there was like a, I guess it was SoundCloud or YouTube. It was like the first song I ever had that had a million plays, but they weren't called streams then because there were no, it was like a million plays. And that was enough at the time to definitely get people's sort of like ears peaked and like, okay. 3 (23m 5s): Was that like, was that when you had the, was that the hype machine one or is that the one that went number one in a high machine? 5 (23m 11s): Yeah. Yeah. I didn't bring up hight mission. Cause I didn't know if that was too niche of a thing. 3 (23m 16s): No, dude. That was like the pinnacle or at the time, if you got number one on a hype machine, it was like everyone had your, their attention. Right. 5 (23m 24s): You, you definitely know what's yeah, it was, it was hype machine fueled for sure. Like blogs where the music discovery source. Like if, if he got posted on the certain coolest blogs or just enough blogs, you could get attention on hype machine, which was like the billboard for the internet essentially. And you are not a robot did go to number one on hype machine. I remember even, I like the first time I ever spent like serious money on, or at least I felt like it on music was like, I did like a, like an ad, an ad buy on hype machine. Like they, they skinned the website to be my, my free download, like a mixed tape for that project. 5 (24m 5s): And I was like, okay, I'm just going to buy this and I'll figure this out. And then like all the people who have found me on hype machine will download the album cause it's going to be free. And I think it actually worked, it actually worked pretty well, but, but yeah, the hype machine was just such a good discovery source at the time, at the time, you know, even though I don't know why, I guess it was just a time, like you had like shitty bang and myself and like a lot of these artists that were mixing the like indie sensibilities, like the indie rock and indie pop stuff with kind of poppy hip hop. So yeah. 3 (24m 34s): Wow. Okay. That's crazy that, I mean, you came from marketing, so it makes sense that you'd have this brilliant idea of like, okay, I'm going to do a free download and it's going to be on high machine, which is like the spot everyone's going to, to discover whatever new artists they are. And then you get a bunch of downloads and to have a song at number one, like I, I just know talking to other artists that have done that, like that's just life changing. 5 (24m 58s): It was very, it's very weird. Cause like once it happens, once you started to think, you like, like your goal move, right. And then the next time you put out a song and it doesn't hit number one on hype machine, you're like, ah, Damn it, my time has passed. But no, it was, it was like, it was very much a slow burn, probably like with a lot of people that you talk to, you know, once the moment happens, whatever that moment is, it all feels like, where did this person come from out of nowhere. But like, they all have these like, oh no, I've been like doing this for 10 years and no one's cared sort of stories. So it's, you know, like it's almost, I don't know what that phrase is where like, like opportunity is where like luck and preparation meet 3 (25m 41s): Or whatever. 5 (25m 41s): There's like a lot of truth to it. It's like, yeah, you like, maybe you don't realize it, but like you've been preparing for what it would be if it all happens. And then like you stuck around long enough for all the dots to connect. And then if you make the most of that opportunity, like you can career, you know, 3 (25m 60s): So you, you ha had that song do that. And then you moved to San Francisco. Like you got the job around the same time. 5 (26m 6s): Yeah. Yeah. I, well actually I think the way, like, you know, they come and recruit you on campus at your school. So I had, I had the job, I had had the job at Google lined up somewhere in my senior year of college, which was really freeing because once you know, you have a job, GPA doesn't matter. It's 3 (26m 27s): Just pass. 5 (26m 30s): I know I need to hit a certain minimum, but I don't need to be like that stressed anymore. That's kind of when all this, like that's when I made you are not a robot with my, with my buddy RJ. Like it was during that semester when everything like, okay, my future or like my safety net job is in place. And we started making this music that became that first mixed tape. So that mixtape drops. I'm like one month into working at Google and I'm balancing these like very, I dunno, weekend warrior life where I'm at the job. And I'm like tweeting back to like the first fans I have. But also like I've gotten booked to play university of Georgia, frat basement and show for like a thousand dollars and I'm flying, flying in to do it. 5 (27m 20s): And then I gotta be back at work by Monday. And eventually, you know, like that was like, this is, this is not 10, a little like this. I can't continue doing this forever. Yeah. It was like, I looked back at those moments kind of like, oh, you really were, had one foot in both. 3 (27m 38s): Well, I would point to you then go, I'm just going to do music. And like how long have you been working at Google at that time? Or was there like a record or a song that did well enough to where you're like, okay, I'm just going to go full into this. 5 (27m 51s): I put out that mixed tape managers would hit me, like hit me up. And I got meetings at like jive or it was like RCA 3 (28m 1s): Major. 5 (28m 2s): Yeah. And I did awful at all those meetings I left with no label offers. And in my head I was like, well, the one thing I need to, to justify leaving Google, 1 (28m 13s): Sign up with bet MGM sports using code champion 200 and win $200 in free bets. When you place a $10 Moneyline wager on any major league baseball game. And either team hits a home run major league baseball, trademarks used with permission, visit bet for terms and conditions. It must be 21 years of age or older. The waiter Virginia only new customer offer. All promotions are subject to qualification and eligibility requirements rewards issued as non withdrawal free bats are site credit, free bats expire seven days from issuance, please gamble responsibly gambling problem. Call 1 800, 832 3500 5 (28m 43s): And leaving this corporate job that everyone talks about is the best place in the world to work. And it was really nice is I just need the record label. Like I need the deal, right. If I get the deal, I can justify it. So my parents, everyone won't worry about me. And then that didn't happen. But I ended up scheduling, like it was like a winter break and I played my first, like three or four headline shows like New York, Boston Philly. 3 (29m 8s): Wow. 5 (29m 8s): Maybe one other one. I can't remember. But those were like my east coast where I'm from shows and every show sold out. And I just said to myself, like, I, I think, I think we do this, you know, and I had like a, my first like booking agent at the time and we had a bunch of those like little college shows and I, you know, I, I am as much as I creative, I'm definitely like pragmatic and analytical as well. So I, I looked at it and said, well, it looks like we can make, I don't know, half of what I'm making at Google. If I just do these shows. And then if I'm putting all my time into music, like I just think I can, I can make it happen. Like give me a year. And we'll see where I'm at. 5 (29m 49s): Like full energy instead of this, double-dipping like never sleeping thing. And so I went back after that winter break to Google and said like, Hey, this is where my head's at. And they said, we support you, like take six months. If it doesn't work out, your job is still here. We wish you weren't. 3 (30m 8s): Wow. That's incredible that they were willing to do that. 5 (30m 11s): I guess. I guess they had already like trained me. So they're like, oh, whatever, 3 (30m 17s): I don't want to train somebody else. 5 (30m 19s): I mean, they truly are training tons of people. We already, we already put our money into him. So yeah. We'll just whatever it was. And you know, six months after that, it just wasn't, there was no turning back, like things that started to happen as, as I had hoped when putting all the energy in there and kinda like we're off to the races doing this all independently. So it was very, yeah. 3 (30m 46s): I mean, that's insane to be independent and self release something like All-American targets. Or if we talk about that record, like it comes out and what it's top 10 on the billboard 200. And like, it goes, it does all these crazy things. Like the number one record on iTunes, like all as an independent artist, 5 (31m 4s): It's 3 (31m 4s): Something that's like, unheard of at the time. 5 (31m 6s): It was it's hard. I mean, like things were happening around that time where I feel like, you know, like maybe even less than a year later, like Macklemore put out like the back more around Lewis, independently, and like 3 (31m 21s): That Grammy for the 5 (31m 24s): Chance, the rapper with acid rap. I mean, there were like other people doing probably even bigger things. 3 (31m 30s): I mean, not a whole lot though. I mean, I mean, odds are definitely against you. 5 (31m 35s): Yeah. All American kind of came. I want to say came first, but it, it did happen, you know, sequentially a little bit earlier. And it was the first time that I ever put anything up for sale because everything before that was like free mix tapes and man of the people, not that selling something makes me not a man of the people, but it was, it was like a moment because I was like, Hey, you know, it would be amazing if you guys could support this it's eight songs. It's going to be $5. Like I wanted to price it. Like at like at the time everything was like a dollar 29 or maybe it is still that way. But like, you know, people didn't, there was some strategy to being like, it's going to be $5 if you want to support, if you've enjoyed. 5 (32m 18s): And it sold 30,000 copies first week, which like, doesn't really make, like, I can't remember what the like social, like how many people did you have on Facebook or whatever. I'll say it felt like it was a, a large majority, like percentage wise of people that said, you know what, like, I'm gonna, I'm gonna, I'm going to back this, I'm gonna support this. And luckily those songs have continued to like, hold up over time. And like, I it's, it's wild. How sometimes I see this happen for a lot of bands too. It's like your first thing that blows up, like just hold a special place in sure. 5 (32m 58s): In those people's hearts forever. And like, I feel fortunate that the thing that did for me is something that I still really enjoy that I enjoy performing. And I don't, I don't look back at it and cringe maybe like just a little bit on like one or two songs for the most part. Like I look back at it fondly and go like, yeah, I'm really glad that this was the thing that, that, you know, resonated with people and got to like kind of start the snowball effect. 3 (33m 25s): And from there, I mean, that is what opened up doors I would imagine. Right. With, with working with a bunch of artists and, and just kind of elevating your career at that point. 5 (33m 36s): Yeah. I mean, it was, it's, it's weird sometimes like as time goes on, it becomes harder and harder to remember like how you feel in, in those very moments. Like, I wish I could capture like all those feelings, because when I think back, I just think, oh wow. Things must've been moving so fast. I just, I started like doing two, two us tours every year. I was like, oh, I'll do, I'll go do a tour in the spring. We'll go do a tour in the fall. So easy. Everything's easy. Yeah. And then like the song is just like, oh yeah, it was an internet thing. And then before, you know, it like the crowd shifts from being like the height machine crowd where it's like, yeah, we don't really like hip hop, but like, if we, if we like anyone will come and see you, it shifts from that to being like, everyone here is like in college and now there's more girls coming. 5 (34m 23s): Like it was like all guys and I was the girls. And you know, like, that's kind of in a weird way. Like once girls start liking you, like girls are the real taste makers. I feel like in the news, 3 (34m 32s): For 5 (34m 32s): Sure. I don't feel like people give enough credit. Like it, cause when the girl likes something, like everyone should really like it. Cause I don't know. I don't know the best way to explain it. It just, 3 (34m 42s): It makes sense though. It does look at the biggest artists on the planet. Right. I mean, look at like Justin Bieber when he came out, like girls flocked to him and then obviously they saw something and so did everyone else, at some point we're like, whoa, like this guy can really right. Yeah. 5 (34m 58s): They know, they know what's up and, and it was just like, oh, okay. You just see, you know, a more diverse group of people coming to the shows and you know, like, oh, I'll just keep, you know, just keep the cycle going. I got time for another mixtape. Like I, I try not to abandon the strategy. Like the thing that came out right after all American was in like a free project, you know, it just felt like, okay, the relationship here with the fans is like, always be transparent and like, let them know how much you appreciate the support. So you're not going to just turn into like now, now everything you just, but like, I, it was very like, okay, got to get back. Here's a free maybe support where the next one, here's a freebie like kind of balancing, balancing that out, back and forth. 5 (35m 43s): And for the most part, yeah. There's a lot of cool music came from that. 3 (35m 47s): Yeah. I mean, what a brilliant T I mean, like I said, you, you have this market, you have a degree or background in marketing and just like the, the, the things you came up with, the kind of, you know, balance your career is so creative. Like, okay, I'm gonna give away a record and I'm going to charge like five bucks. Like, you know, people that's like a coffee. Right. And it's like, okay, sure. And then I'll give you a free one and then like, you know, help support me on this one. Like, that's, it's just brilliant. 5 (36m 14s): It felt, it felt right. I don't know. I don't know. It was like, I don't know, at the end of the day, like you can look back and make decisions, decisions saying like, oh, well, what if I had, what if I had signed with a label, like right after that record came out with some of these songs that are still, you know, some of the bigger things in like my discography, where they've been like 10 times as big if they ever were on the radio. Cause a lot of the songs, I mean they never got mainstream appeal. Like I'm still confused to this day, how people know them or like where they were in their life, when like that became something that they were aware of, because it always, still felt very underground to me. So when I see like a tic-tac like eight years later, someone's like, this song was my childhood. 5 (36m 55s): I'm like how, like where, where, but yeah. It's like those decisions, I think ultimately like no regrets, because I think maybe it's more like the songs wouldn't, they would have been played out if they had gotten that like wide, Y you know, like there's something about a song still being like your little thing that you hold on to when it doesn't become everyone's. 3 (37m 21s): I mean, it kind of goes back to even those emo bands at the time, like the long island, emo bands they're taking back Sundays that never got radio play until they signed to a major label, but they had like this nit core fan base that always held on to them. And it was like, that's my childhood, the tell all your friends record, like, and then they can come back 25 years later or whatever it was and play the album and people flock to them. But I mean, that's, it's cool to, it's cool that you get to be that for people. I'm sure. 5 (37m 48s): I don't know if it's like imposter syndrome or what you would call it, but like, to me, it's still, doesn't always make sense. Sometimes I got, I think it's incredible, but I, I model so much of like, when I, when I thought about like touring and just longevity in general, in the music industry, I looked to a lot of those bands, very favorably. I mean, they, they get, like, I never really thought I gotta be an arena act and I gotta be on the cover of rolling stone. Like those sort of like, I don't know, accolades or moments were never the things that really was what I was striving for. I just, I always had this like idea in my head that like, I want to do this for as long as I want to do it. 5 (38m 29s): Like, I, I love for it to always be on my terms and to just have like this thing where music, and like, like as long as it's bringing me like that joy, I want to be able to like, enjoy that and share it with other people. And I look, I look at somebody that has bands that just like you said, like they can come back to this day regardless and just continue to tour and make people happy and like share this thing that they made and people care about their new stuff and people care about their old stuff. And it's, it's, it's just, I'm like, wow, what a, what an incredible life. I think, I think that's like something to absolutely try for. 3 (39m 3s): Well, okay, so you, this is the, this record you're putting out is the first thing you've released. What, in a few years, right? 5 (39m 10s): Yeah. I don't think I've ever since starting. I don't think I've ever went this long without putting out a body of work. I know like everyone's like, like we kind of get a pass for these past two years with the world, in some sense, maybe it's not like a normal, normal timeline. And I really do love matching the release of new music with touring and for so much of, of the pandemic that obviously wasn't a thing. I definitely looked at things and said, if you put out a new record and then like, you don't get to go tour the world on it, you know, where does that record end up like living for people? Does it get forgotten? There's definitely like a bit of trepidation with that. But, but yeah, this is, this is the first time I've put something out since my 2019 albums. 5 (39m 56s): So it's like, I'm getting all the feelings again, like those exciting butterfly feelings where you've like held on to this baby and you're like, okay, baby time for other people to, to have you also, so it's yeah. It's all coming back. 3 (40m 11s): Well, and you took a different approach. I mean, the song I've heard is, is awesome. I love, and I love the re like the, this kind of Reese resurgence, I guess it'd be of like pop punk and all that. And that John rhe, like really making a huge comeback and this, this song or this song and this record is a totally different sound for you. Correct? 5 (40m 32s): Yeah. It's I mean, it's interesting. It's definitely, I mean like the biggest difference is like, it's, I mean, it's not a hip hop record. There's, there's, there's one rap verse on the entire thing. It's, it's very much it's. I think it's, it's similar in the ways that like, my voice is my voice. And like this perspective is like, it's, it's gonna feel like, like a hoodie on record to the people who know me, even despite like, because they've, they've seen me do like collaborate with state champs and 3 (41m 3s): Right. 5 (41m 4s): And like, you know, I've, I've worked like Nick Anderson, who, who, who, you know, made the whole record with me from the wrecks. Like he, we worked together on a song in the last project. So like the foundations have been sort of set in this place, but the differences are like, yeah, I've made a story album about a breakup, the real, very real, like, honest thing that, that I went through. So instead of the songs being, you know, hip hop fund stuff, we've got sad bops. This time is what I like to call it. Like, the songs are mostly still high energy, but the lyrics are sad. 5 (41m 44s): And, and like, you know, it's a, it's just kind of a much more honest approach and it it's been interesting to see, like you said, like, there's been a bit of a resurgence in this place. We started like Nick and myself started working on this record a little bit before the changing of, of all those things happening. So like we're kind of sitting and being like, oh shoot, it's gonna, everyone else is already doing this. But I think maybe the one differentiator is for the majority of the record, all the music is very like organic. Like we're not trying to match a pop rock emo with like trap. Like that's not, that's like not the goal here, like the record isn't like drowned in like auto tune and stuff like that. 5 (42m 28s): Like 3 (42m 29s): At least the song that I heard did not at 5 (42m 31s): All it's, you know, like it's much more born off of a mixture of like, okay, well, this is just what I felt like. These are the songs that like, that came from like the, this like therapy session basically. And then also like the influences of what they grew up on. Like, you know, getting to work with like a guy like mark Hoppus on this. Like, it just, it brings out certain aspects of the record where it just feels like very organic and real, at least for me. 3 (43m 1s): When did you start writing the record? Was it during COVID or when the pandemic happened? 5 (43m 5s): I got, I got stuck at Nick's house during COVID. I was there to write it, like, it was this like March of 20, 20, I guess. And I was like staying at a hotel and then there were like Uber's and hotels are shutting down and he, he lives in Los Angeles. I live in New York. So I was like, what do I do now? And he was like, Hey man, just, you know, like, come stay with me and we'll work and we'll hang out. And like, that process ended up becoming like a four month stay at his house, not something I ever anticipated, but like the world completely shut down. And the idea of going on a plane was not a thing that anyone did, I guess, 3 (43m 51s): And going to New York where it was like the worst of all this. 5 (43m 53s): Yeah. And then it's like, well, I can, I can be in my one-bedroom apartment. Not able to leave or I could be outside in California. I'm going to, I'm going to stay here and see what happened. And yeah, so we made a lot of the record during, during those times before he got tired of having me around and then we just hung out and didn't make music, but yeah. And then it's just been a process as there was open, like just coming back this tongs and tweaking and finishing and till we now finally have like a full record. So it's, yeah, it's very going to be, it's definitely going to be the always going to be like the most unique story of a way an got made is like, oh, I got stuck on my friend's couch during the pandemic, essentially. 3 (44m 37s): That's cool though. I, I, he's a great guy. I interviewed the wrecks before, during COVID and he like, his room had like these crazy like purple light, like lighting in his studio. I dunno if he I'm sure you do 5 (44m 51s): Led lights. Yeah. I spend many, many hours in that room. Next one, like the most hardworking it's like, it was so interesting living with him. Cause we'd have days where you'd just be like, yeah, he's going to stay up three days straight making this music. And like, he just doesn't go to sleep. And then, and then he'll be asleep for two days and I'll just see him pop up out of his room, like cook a pizza and then go back to sleep. I was like, all right. All right, CNN, 3 (45m 20s): You're alive. Okay. That's good. 5 (45m 22s): I think he has a much healthier work-life balance now, but at the time when the world sort of turned off, I mean, we just behaved in like such a odd way of like making music and living. It was very, it was very weird. 3 (45m 37s): That's awesome. Now. And then you obviously had a chance to work with mark Hoppus on the record. Did you work with state champs again on this record? 5 (45m 44s): No, but I just mark, but I mean, I love those state champs guys. Like they they're, I mean, like, besides them all ha like, you know, Ryan's prestigious has like multiple other projects as well. Like, like they are, I'm excited for them because they're out there, all my things coming out the same day as my first single. 3 (46m 3s): Yeah. They have a new record on the way, and they've been doing some cool stuff to over, over COVID that song was simple plan. And I think that we are Romans, I think Ron as well, I don't know. 5 (46m 14s): They're just, they're just great deeds and I admire so much of what they do as well, because like, again, you see like an amazing like touring fan base and people who just, you know, it's like the people who you have, it doesn't matter if it's like, oh, you 20 minute monthly million monthly listeners, just like, it doesn't matter. Cause like the people who like listen like really care and that's at the end of the day, all you can ask for like, I'd much rather have like a passionate sort of group of people than just so many cats 3 (46m 44s): Number and number, 5 (46m 46s): The number, the numbers overrated. Sometimes when you really break it down, 3 (46m 50s): Not always does it translate right to hard ticket sales into people that actually care. They might know, oh, you have that one song that I have on my playlist. But yeah, to have a whole fan base is totally different. 5 (47m 0s): The music industry is weird like that because it's always like the grass is greener. I remember, you know, I wouldn't say jealous, but like there was a, like, I would see someone getting an opportunity, like the XXL freshmen cover, I'd be like, ah, why, why can't XXL like ever cover me? Or like, I never, you know, the cool nylon magazine. I never get a write up in that. And then the same person who was getting that stuff is like, dude, I just want to tour and do what you're doing. Like, what are you? So you're like, oh, gotcha. We all feel this way in different ways about like, you know, comparative analysis to cell. 3 (47m 34s): Sure, sure. So when you, with this record, was there, did it just kind of happened that it wasn't hip hop? I mean, that, that just kind of came out when you were doing the records. You're like, oh, well actually none of these songs really have like, you know, full on rappers as on them. 5 (47m 49s): Yeah. I mean, I'm sure that's partially a symptom of, of working with Nick and obviously wanting to live in like the production wheelhouse that is his world and, you know, he can do anything, but like he is, you know, a rock guy and that's like where sensibilities are. And like, he has so many good, strong melodies and, and ideas, but like it, you know, we were living in like an alternative space and it also felt like that was what was right for the things that I wanted to like, say and share and like be vulnerable and open about, you know, what was going on in my life. Like it kind of just naturally went there and that's like, that's like one of my favorite things about it that I don't, I don't I'll always know that for myself. 5 (48m 30s): I don't know it. What, what, like the public will think when they hear it all, because it's like you said, there's been such a resurgence that it could just easily have been like, oh yeah, you're gonna, you're going to ride this wave now too. It's like, I don't know, man. Like I was not, I wasn't thinking about a wave at all. We were doing this just to like, you know, to feel better. Like, I, I felt I was so sad. I just made these songs that feel better. Like, that's all it was, 3 (48m 56s): But it wasn't, it's not even like your sound sounds like what they're doing, you know? Cause there's like a really distinct like machine gun Kelly, like sound right. Like a mod son type sound, but it's happening. But this what I've heard doesn't sound, anything like that at all. 5 (49m 11s): Yeah. I mean, I'll love to those guys. Like I've told her with mom before, like I think, you know, it's, it's awesome. He's also like a great a example of like persistence. Like if you know how long he's been doing, 3 (49m 21s): He's been grinding forever. 5 (49m 22s): Like, you know, like, I'm glad you had like this breakout moment cause you haven't been grinding forever. But yeah. I, I, I, I, I do think that because we did make something like completely fun uninspired by like what was going around us that hopefully it will, it will kind of sound like its own thing 3 (49m 42s): And adult. It definitely does. And he'd still even the song I heard with a wouldn't that be nice? Has there like a hip hop like that? It changes up in the middle of this. Oh yeah. Okay. 5 (49m 52s): Yeah. I know. Sorry. I didn't mean to cut you off. Say that that's the one that has the most hip hop drum elements of everything, which maybe it's a good reason to give it first to people for you know, the sort of transitional, like I'm accustomed to things 3 (50m 5s): Transition 5 (50m 7s): And like, and like his, his former band mate, Western Weiss who like, has gone on to do so many production for post Malone and break and stuff like that. Like, he, he was a part of that record as well. But besides that, I mean, we're really going with like the organic sounding drum kits and just, you know, like everything feeling very banned, you know, meant for a live performance. For sure. 3 (50m 31s): I love that. And is the video for, I haven't had a chance to see a video for when that'd be nice, but is that, it's kind of telling them the story of the record too, is that what I read? 5 (50m 40s): Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. That, that we're in the visual effects editing stage at the time of us talking right now. Okay. Got it. Got to cut it close. You know what I mean? Got to make it impossible. That's the music business, but yeah, no, I mean, it, it definitely tells the story of, of where the story starts and you know, so much of this record, it's kind of like, it feels like, you know, the returning to an apartment that you used to share with somebody and now no longer do. And I don't know, just kinda like the, for me, most, most of the, I mean the album kind of starts at the end of this relationship and where it ends is it's not like we put a nice bow on it and everything is like happy ever after it kind of ends still in a bit of like that insecurity spot where you're like, I'm getting over you, but are you getting over me to like, like, you know, just like, it's not, it's still like weird. 5 (51m 36s): And, and it, most of the records kind of touch on this, like this, like in-between stage where I'm sure, you know, maybe not everyone has had this part of their, of their relationship, but like you broken up with somebody, but you're still talking. 3 (51m 53s): So many people have had that 5 (51m 55s): And they're still making it weird for yourself. And you're still putting yourself in like a harmful 3 (52m 1s): Position to get hurt. Right. 5 (52m 4s): It was like, I know that I did something to hurt myself, but I couldn't help it because I was still chasing like the moments that felt the best when you're with that person. Even though, you know, that you're like setting up for yourself to get crushed, like you're, you're crushing yourself while doing this. And like that kind of spans the, the length of this record. And visually I think the, the music video brings a lot of those elements to life. Also. 3 (52m 31s): I love it. I've never heard a, I haven't, I can't think of anyone that's written a song or a record like that. And it's such a like relatable thing, you know what I mean? Like kind of being in that space of you don't want to be around this person, but I shouldn't because they can just be with someone else and, you know, crush me and yeah, like just the uncertainty there. I love that. 5 (52m 49s): And they were, which is why the, the songs become so interesting because it was messy and complicated and multiple people involved. And, but, you know, we'll save that. We'll save that for the music, I guess, but I'm good. Now these were, these were things that I felt before, but I feel better now. 3 (53m 9s): I'm glad you feel better now. Thank you so much for doing this interview, man. You are so cool. Like I really, really appreciate it. 5 (53m 17s): Like I said, you're my, you're my first interview. So I'm, I will not forget this. I'm I'm really appreciative of it. And I appreciate you checking out the record as well. Like that is, we've got, we've got to make sure you hear the whole thing. 3 (53m 29s): Yeah. I can't wait to, like I said, I heard the one song and I'm like, oh, this is so good. I, I love it. 5 (53m 35s): Yeah. I mean, I think thank you again for having me on what you're doing and, and so excited to see what, you know, how big the channel is going to get. 3 (53m 44s): Well, thank you, man. I appreciate it. I have one more quick question for you before I let you go. I want to know if you have any advice for aspiring artists. 5 (53m 52s): Yeah. I mean, I think my advice is to, Hmm. I, I feel like I had like old advice. So I'm trying to think of what feels really current. Now. I would say be resilient and be persistent, but always do things for yourself and I'll break down what that means. I always tell artists, like you gotta, like, you have your one career and it's to you. Like, you have to be the person who relies on yourself the most, and you should do this regardless of if it's a career or not. If this is the thing that you like love doing, and you're, you know, you'd love to get to the point where you can make it a career. Okay. 5 (54m 32s): Just like keep doing it for you. And don't do it to chase a hit song or be frustrated if like, it's like, talk's not blowing up yet. Like it's not supposed to be easy. Like are our barriers to entry are so low. Now anybody can put out a song. I can go on Spotify. Anyone can have a song go viral on Tik TOK. And because it's so achievable for so many people, a lot of people are trying. So just keep at it. That's where the, I think be persistent part is and, and keep, you know, just being positive because the, I do believe that things that are special, even if you have no following, they somehow find a way to, to break out eventually. 5 (55m 15s): Like it's hard to keep a really, really good song hidden for too long. So keep making those songs and, and yeah.

Hoodie AllenProfile Photo

Hoodie Allen


Hoodie Allen delivers heartbreak-inspired emo hooks in the latest iteration of his ever-evolving musical journey. His upcoming eight-track album weaves between infectious pop melodies juxtaposed with punk guitar riffs. A sonic departure from his usual playful raps, the record takes listeners on a highly personal journey of the messiness that befalls a breakup. The alternative pop-punk emergence isn’t completely unexpected, however, as Hoodie has previously toured with the likes of Fall Out Boy, opened for Panic at the Disco & Twenty One Pilots, and collaborated with Mark Hoppus (of Blink 182) and State Champs.

The Brooklyn-based indie musician became an independent sensation when he first formally arrived in 2009. Without a label or management, his 2012 EP All American landed in the Top 10 of Billboard’s Top 200, delivering 2 platinum singles, and eventually moving over 250,000 units. His mainstream success led to a collaboration with Ed Sheeran in 2014, which garnered buzz from MTV, Buzzfeed, Billboard, and more. Now he is poised to break all preconceptions with his next genre-shifting release, which was co-written and produced with The Wreck’s Nick Anderson. Hoodie’s fun-loving yet vulnerably honest take on alternative rock is fueled by his long-time love of punk rock and guaranteed to strike a chord with anyone looking for a vibrant summer soundtrack.