David and Jacob of Lynam
Alabama based Lynam have one mission – to put the ROCK back in rock and roll. With their upcoming release Tragic City Symphony they give it their best shot – drums fit for an arena, catchy choruses, and a ballad or two to raise your lighter…er…cell phone to! Big arena style rock is not a thing of the past, it’s just missing from the present but Lynam is intent on making it a fixture of the future. With guest appearances by Cinderella’s Tom Keifer and Hinder and produced by the likes of Jason Elgin (Collective Soul, Maylene, Sons of Disaster), Tragic City Symphony is primed and ready for a rock n roll revolution.
The trio (Jacob Lynam on vocals and guitar, David Lynam on drums and vocals and Mark Lynam on bass and vocals) are blood brothers with DNA derived from pure adrenalized rock. Drawing their influences from bands like Motley Crue, Nickelback and Green Day, Lynam looks to fill the heavy shoes of bands that know how to command a stage and excite an army of fans. Currently on a non-stop tour of bringing their show to every stage that will have them the band is also taking part in the upcoming sold out Motley Cruise, that’s right – rock on water baby!
Recently Jacob and David took some time to talk to TWRY staffer Stacie about the state of the music industry, their personal manifesto to bring rock n roll back to it’s glory days and all things Lynam.
Interviewed by: Stacie Caddick-Dowty | November 2007
You formed in 2001, How did you all get interested in playing and how did you form the band?
Jacob: I got interested in music watching bands like Motley Crue, Cinderella, music from that era. They were like comic book characters to me, people I admired and wanted to be like. As far as coming together as a band, we all met in a bar one night. We shook hands and a week later we were playing together.
David:I’d say I got interested in music watching MTV in the 80’s when they actually use to play videos. Motley Crue and the like. I look up to Tommy Lee as a drummer. My folks wouldn’t always let me go see them but the few times they did I remember thinking, “They must be stunt doubles of some sort. There’s NO WAY the actual band members are IN BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA.” Hah.
There is conflicting information out there regarding you all being brothers, would you like to set the record straight?
Jacob: Sure, we are brothers whenever we play music together.
David: We fight like brothers, meaning you’re going to argue and ya-ya with whoever you’re in a band with but it’s all easily swept under the rug rather quickly. But no, we’re not actually related.
So you aren’t blood related?
Jacob: Nope, like how the Ramones all took the last name Ramone… same idea!
Describe your sound.
Jacob: Foo Fighters, Green Day and Guns N Roses.
You new disc “Tragic City Symphony” is in the works, tell us about it, whom you work with etc…
Jacob: We’ve been working again with producer Jason Elgin (Maylene and the Sons of Disaster, Collective Soul), who we consider the 4th member of Lynam. He always brings out the best in us and on this new record he has pushed us to new levels. We have some really cool special guests on the new record including Hinder and Tom Keifer (Cinderella). Along with Jason Elgin, we also got to work with Mike Shipley (Green Day, Def Leppard) and Beau Hill (Ratt, Stevie Nicks) on mixing.
David: We’re actually done with it. We’ve slapped a few of them up on our myspace page just to give our fans a taste of the new stuff and the feedback has been unreal.
How would you compare this to previous releases?
David: I don’t know how we are going to top this. The sound is really “big”. I always leave the studio wondering how we are going to do something better and somehow Jason Elgin pulls some new studio trick out of his ass and makes it happen.
Jacob: The drums sound like they were recorded in an arena. We’re a fan of big sound whether it be Motley Crue’s Dr. Feelgood album or Green Day’s American Idiot.
You recently signed to an Indie label, but previously released work on your own. What differences do you expect in sales, touring and support now that you have a label backing you?
Jacob: We don’t expect anything. We don’t expect higher sales because there are so many file sharing sites out there, people get their music free. We just want fans to GET the music. I can’t believe I’m saying this, you’d think I’d be pissed.
David: Nowadays album sales are a thing of the past and every time the sun rises fewer and fewer people are buying cds. So to be naïve about that aspect of the business just sets you back two steps when it comes to a blueprint for success. I think that’s why we, as a band, just want our music playing in someone’s ipod. Could you imagine that being said 10 years ago? People would’ve thought you’d lost your mind.
Just come to the shows and buy some merch while you are there?
Jacob: Come see us, as long as people are coming to the shows that’s all we care about.
Take us through some of your favorite tracks, how they came about and the stories they are trying to convey.
Jacob: I don’t like to tell the stories they are trying to tell, because what I think they are about and when you might think they are about could be different, and that could ruin it for someone. Like “Every Breath You Take” by The Police, I always thought it was this pretty love song. Then Sting said it was about a stalker, and that it was the darkest song he had every written.
David: Now sitting with your girlfriend and cuddling with her and listening to that song is just eerie. I can see how that would ruin it for you.
Jacob: But, there are a few songs that are straight forward in their meaning. “A Million Ways” is a love song. “If You Leave” has a symphony orchestra taking part in it. It’s about a good friend of ours who lost his best friend and his wife in the same day to a guy with a gun. It really had quite the effect on us all. He was shot himself and after he recovered from his injuries but he had to come home to an empty house. He barely survived this awful situation so expect this song to emotionally touch a lot of people. Mike Shipley mixed this song. It’s just really pretty if I do say so myself. I only tell folks what that song is about because I definitely want them to listen to it and hear the struggle that our friend went through. We have all the guys from Hinder on the song “Enemy”. Tom Keifer also does a slide guitar solo on that song as well so it’s rockin’.
Who brings what to the table in your writing process?
Jacob: We all have different roles. I’m the songwriter in the group. Dave is our people person. He returns all the emails and MySpace messages, and Mark … he keeps the girls happy!
David: I think he’s got the toughest job! We are like a football team, we all have our position that we keep.
Jacob: Mark also … well he wouldn’t want us telling you this because it might ruin his rock star image but he can keep our tour bus rolling in the toughest of situations. He’s a hell of a little grease monkey when it comes to bus maintenance out on the road.
Every musician has musical influences, who are yours?
Jacob: “Fun Bands”, bands that are really fun to see LIVE. Like Nickelback, KISS, Motley Crue, Green Day. They put on such a great show; we want to put on a show like them!
David: We want people to know what we look like though, and remember us.
Jacob: Like, Nickelback could walk through a shopping mall and the only person that would get noticed MAYBE is Chad. We want to bring people back out to rock shows.
David: The grunge era killed live shows because people quit giving a shit. They stared at their shoes, griped and moaned. Screw that. Lets party- girls, lets see some tits in the front row, lets pass some Jager around the crowd, lets start getting to shows at 2:30 p.m. and having a little rock n’ roll parking lot. Fuck this showing up barely in time for the headliner. You’re never going to hear a new band you like by doing that shit.
What are some of the highs and lows of touring?
Jacob: The definite high for us right now is coming onstage opening for Godsmack, Hinder, Cinderella, Def Leppard, to thousands of people in a sold out venue. The lows…take the worst gig we ever played and it still doesn’t compare to sitting on the side of the road with a flat, waiting for hours.
David: We’ve played on flatbed trailers, you name it. It’s all rock n’ roll though so no real gig is a downer for me. A gig’s a gig. Some are better than others but as long as you’re doing what you love, who cares about getting pelted with tomatoes!
…and have you learned any lessons that you say to yourself “Well, we won’t do that again!”
Jacob: Yeah, wear a rubber and don’t do drugs!
David: You know we all read these interviews just to see what mistakes every other bands have made! But in all seriousness, the question is always phrased wrong. There’s TONS of different maps to success that have worked. A better way to ask this question of bands is, “Any advice you can give a band NOT to do along the way. Bands always wanna go, “Hey, don’t give up, keep trying.”Fuck that. Don’t keep trying if you’re formula is shit. Quit, get a real job. If you do something the wrong way for 10 years, that’s 10 years of your life you wasted in the business. Don’t write crappy songs. If you have been a band for five years and no one is ever listening to your music when you get into their car, then get with someone who can write better songs. Don’t keep writing crap. You’re just spinning your tires.
Watch Lynam’s video for Tanis
Ok, so you’ve been added to the Motley Cruise which sets sail on January 24th, what else is in your future?
David: Well we aren’t booking anything for after the cruise because we don’t plan on coming back! You can find us in a little cantina in Mexico if you want to see us.
Jacob: Seriously we are planning on touring next summer after our release.
David: We’d like to get back to all the places we’ve previously hit. Some places we’ve only been to once. So we’d definitely like to get back to those fans, and see some familiar faces.
Well you better come up to the NorthEast because I’d like to check you guys out.
Jacob: We’re playing New Jersey on December 8th in Long Branch, that isn’t too far away!
Anything else you’d like to hit on, maybe a message to your fans?
Jacob: Thanks for doing this interview, we really appreciate it!!
David: Go out and buy our music, and come to our shows!