Interview by Alexa T.
February 11, 2009
Estrella: Could you please state your name and what you do in the band.
Jerry: My name is Sierra and I sing for the band VersaEmerge.
Devin: My name is Devin, I play bass.
Jerry: I’m not really Sierra actually. I’m Jerry.
Estrella: How has your current tour with We The Kings been?
Devin: This is our fourth day, it’s awesome, we love it, every second.
Estrella: Are there any towns coming up on this tour that you’re really looking forward to playing?
Jerry: All of them, I think. It’s cool to get away from home for a while.
Estrella: Could you give me a rundown of how your members met?
Devin: Blake and Ant used to be in a band together which is our drummer and guitarist. Then, I eventually came along, right before we got Sierra. Jerry is our newest member we just got…
Jerry: Yeah, actually about a year and a half ago, I was actually in the band for a few months with a completely different line up and a guy singer. I left to go to school and now, here I am again.
Estrella: Who are some of the bands that influence your music?
Devin: Blake has a wide range of musical influences. He likes Frou Frou, Imogen Heap. Which by my tone, I’m sure you can tell that I’m very excited about those two. He loves Bjork.
Jerry: Yeah, Bjork and The Receiving End of Sirens, a lot of different kinds of music. Very experimental.
Devin: Which is really cool because it shines through in this genre, when it comes together to be performed, it’s very cool.
Estrella: Who are some of your personal influences that made you want to become a musician.
Devin: A lot, when I was really little, I was like everybody else and in my Nirvana stage, for sure. I was like Kurt or Die. I have older sisters that were really into Nirvana at the time, when I was a toddler, so I got an early dosage. I think that’s what kicked it off for me.
Jerry: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Coheed & Cambria, just stuff like that I grew up listening to. I think we all have our share. All together, we have a lot of similar sounds.
Estrella: When it came to signing with Fueled By Ramen, how’d that come about?
Devin: We negotiated that for about six months. We were talking to a lot of different labels, Fueled By showed a lot of passion towards us. They just fit best. They were very assertive, by coming and meeting with us in Tampa, we talked for a long time and eventually everything just worked out. Now we’re even more happy on the label and now they’re taking good care of us.
Jerry: I came into the band during the latter part of the negotiation process. From what I’ve experienced with them, everything’s awesome, it works really well.
Estrella: Your EP came out last week and I was wondering where can a person buy a hard copy other than just at your merch table?
Jerry: You can buy it at our merch table.
Devin: We only have physical copies with us for merch and you can find it in Florida Hot Topics but other than that you can’t get a physical copy unless you get online.
Estrella: For your new EP, how long did it take to record and who did you work with?
Devin: We worked with James Paul Wisner, who is awesome in Orlando. He’s worked with old Paramore, The Academy Is, My American Heart, Underoath, Dashboard. It only took about a week for the recording process.
Jerry: Yeah, we don’t get a lot of time to do anything.
Devin: We spent quite some time to write for the EP but we only really focused on it within a clutch. Literally, it felt like an hour. Like, “Okay, we have to come up with songs because we’re recording tomorrow.” I literally had a Hot Pocket in the microwave and I was excited to eat and got a call that was like, “We need to drop everything we’re doing and spend the next portion on our lives on this record.”
Jerry: If you haven’t seen our tour schedule, it’s kind of busy.
Estrella: What are you currently listening to?
Jerry: I like a lot of different stuff like Fiona Apple “When The Dawn”… Don’t call me gay, I see it.
Estrella: I’m not!! You didn’t go on a whim and say musicals and I mean you can, I don’t care, it’s about what you like…
Jerry: This is true, but again I like girls. I like Fiona Apple a lot. Emery, that’s my favorite band.
Estrella: They did just have a new EP come out not that long ago…
Devin: Do you want to talk about it, Jerry?
Jerry: I’m going to do it. Yes, we’ll talk about it.
Estrella: We don’t have to…
Jerry: No, it’s cool. They released this full length, I’m Only A Man and I was huge fan of The Question which was the record before that and that’s my all time favorite record ever and when they released I’m Only A Man, I ran out and got it and put it in my car and I was like, “Is this a practical joke?” I thought I was being Punk’d, I was looking for Ashton, but it definitely wasn’t my favorite, I was disappointed with that one and then I heard their Myspace track off of the EP they just did and I was stoked on it. Same thing happened again, I went to the record store and bought the record and I put it in my car and none of the other songs sound like that one. That’s my Emery explanation. As a whole, for their new EP, I still like it. (In reference to Devin) Him and I had this thing because we’re constantly arguing over if that’s a good album.
Estrella: What about you Devin, what are you listening to?
Devin: Usually whatever’s in the van. We have 5 Ipods that go around simultaneously, so whatever we decide to plug in and listen to.
Estrella: The “Shuffle” is the best part of the Ipod. It’s awesome.
Devin: Mostly I like City and Colour, Minus The Bear, As Tall As Lions, indie stuff like that.
Estrella: What do you believe you’d be doing if you weren’t in a band?
Jerry: Well I was going to school to be a lawyer.
Estrella: Oh, you’d be in school for a while.
Jerry: That was my reaction to when I realized what I was doing. I’d probably go back to doing that.
Devin: I used to work at NASA, so I’d probably be working at NASA still.
Estrella: Do you have any crazy tour stories that you’re willing to share?
Devin: We were in Philadelphia and the venue was in a bad part of town. There’s this group of hoodlums hanging out, outside of the venue. There was this little kid on this bike, he couldn’t have been more than 5 years old, but he was a monster, huge, and he was riding up and down the street almost getting hit by cars and talking shit to everybody. We were trying to load in and he was calling us all these names that I’ve never even heard before and it’s some of the meanest stuff that has ever been said to me. This kid is five years old and fat and on a bicycle riding in front of the venue we’re playing at and everyone’s just thinking, “Is this serious?” We’re all standing outside, watching this kid exist, laughing at him, and he’s doing all this funny stuff and saying all these funny things and he gets off his bike and points at Blake and says, “Hey You!” Blake says, “What?” and he says, “You’s a bitchhh!” “Call my mama from the cops, bitch!” And we talked about that nonstop for a week. It was pretty memorable for us.
Jerry: Oh, the people you meet on tour.
Devin: When you tour, you experience the things that you only see funny movies about.
Estrella: Favorite town you’ve played?
Jerry: Diesel. New Hampshire’s cool.
Devin: Yeah, I like Diesel. I love Boston.
Estrella: Sketchiest town you’ve ever played or venue?
Devin: I don’t know if you were with us the other time but we played in Detroit. Detroit is not good for us. Period.
Estrella: Best Halloween costume ever worn?
Jerry: One year, I put white garbage bags on me. Well, I cut holes in it and put it on but I was dressed as white trash.
Devin: I think I was an awesome Superman except the outfit was way too tight for my bulge.
Estrella: Any bands or companies you’d like to plug that you believe need more attention.
Devin: I think Phillip Morris could use a better reputation. No, I’m just kidding. Hide & Seek which is a name of a clothing company.
Jerry: They’re super sweet, they’re just starting out, they have really awesome stuff, they’re really nice people.
Devin: There’s a band called The Arrival from Alabama and we did a little tour with them and this band called Eye Alaska, but they’re awesome.
Jerry: They are my favorite humans alive.
Estrella: Since this is the Secret Valentine Tour, who’s your celebrity crush?
Devin: Celebrity crush? Oh! John Stamos!
Jerry: Let the record show that Devin, not Jerry, Devin. I think Megan Fox might be from a different planet where everybody’s really hot.
Devin: Jessica Alba.
Estrella: I thought it was John Stamos?
Devin: Well, she’s definitely right under John Stamos but she’s definitely a close second.
Estrella: Any closing statements?
Jerry: This is usually the part where I have to think of something really good…
Estrella: And you can’t think of anything?
Jerry: I’ve got nothing.
Devin: Just be sure to check us out. We’ll be on tour nonstop. Get to know us.
Jerry: Myspace.com/VersaEmerge. Is is backslash or forwardslash? I didn’t take a computer course in college…