Hawaii is a magical place. It’s super cliche, but if you’ve ever been there you know it to be true. There’s this energy, this vibe that radiates off everything on the island that is almost indescribably joyous, peaceful, and exciting.
The Green embodies this vibe, and the magic of Hawaii.
The band, who we first got turned onto back in 2011, is an undeniable force in the reggae world. Every record they drop is a hit, doing extremely well all over the Billboard charts. Each and every year they tour the crowds get bigger, and the tours get more high profile. And it’s all because of that intrinsic magic the band brings to their records, and their live shows.
Recently we chatted with the band as they prepare to play House of Independents in Asbury Park, NJ tonight. We talked about their new record Marching Orders, bringing on a pop music producer to work on the album, and more.
We interviewed you guys back in 2011, and it was right between the release of your self-titled album, and Ways and Means. How do you feel the band has grown/evolved since that time? To be more specific — in regards to sound, stage presence, and lyrics.
The band has definitely grown since the release of our first album. A lot of that growth has to do with the experience we gain from touring. We learned from bands that we opened for; bands like Iration and Rebelution showed us the ropes when we first started touring. We learned a lot about performing from those guys and just touring in general.
Our sound has definitely matured over the years. From the first album to Ways and Means, Hawaii 13 and now Marching Orders, there’s growth. It’s in the songwriting and the music production. We always want to put out the very best song we can, so we always try to improve the music production side of things, and I think with that, the songwriting/lyrics gets better as well.
It seems every time you release a record it does extremely well on the charts. What do you think it is about your band that people seem to immediately react and pick up your music en masse, relatively speaking, as soon as you drop something?
We love our fans, and one of the reasons why is because they support us in anything we put out. Without the fans our music wouldn’t do as well on the charts. Another reason is because we have a lot of support from our fans at home in Hawaii. I can’t give a reason specifically as to what it is we do that makes people want to pick up our music, but I know we must be doing something right.
You guys have had a pretty groundbreaking career as the one reggae band from Hawaii that’s crossed over into the mainstream and had major success. How does that feel personally? Is this an immense honor, or is this just something you guys roll with because it’s part of the journey?
I think we just roll with it. We are doing something we love, something that we care a lot about. We have goals that we have set and that we accomplished and goals that we are still working toward achieving. We have been successful, but we know we still have a lot of work to do, a lot of songs to share with the world. We know this is just the beginning. We are very humbled and honored that our fans enable us to follow our dreams.
Brian Fennell, who has worked with a variety of pop and rock acts like Third Eye Blind and OneRepublic, did writing and producing on this album. What did he bring to the table for this record, and how did his input influence the overall sound of the record?
It was awesome to work with Brian Fennell on the album. He definitely added a lot to the overall sound of Marching Orders. His experience with producing for different pop and rock artists were crucial. He was able to really give the album a well-rounded sound by adding in those little subtleties. It was a perfect pairing, and Brian gave the album exactly what it needed.
You also had a number of guests on the new record — who were you most excited to have on there?
Can I just say, we were excited for everyone! Eric Rachmany from Rebelution was a long time in the works and we were finally able to do one of our songs with him. We are also huge Busy Signal fans so it was so great to have him on the title track. And then we have our uncles Mana’o Company and Fiji, artists that we looked up to our entire lives. To say we are stoked on the features on this album would be an understatement.
What are you guys most stoked about that’s on the horizon in 2018?
Having the new album Marching Orders to promote and share with the world is what we will dedicate all of 2018 too and then some, but, that is the excitement, getting to spread the new music and share these new songs with the world and playing them live on stage. When we release a new album there is always this sort of breath of fresh air, new songs, new set, new stage banner (hahahaha), familiar and hopefully new faces in the audience. We are recharged and ready to go. Bring on 2018.