The Maine spreads positivity through music
The New Paper speaks with The Maine frontman John O'Callaghan about the band's self-love anthem, "Am I Pretty?"
For alternative-rock band The Maine, being able to stand firm behind the message of their music is the most important part of their work.
The American band - consisting of John O'Callaghan, Kennedy Brock, Pat Kirch, Jared Monaco and Garrett Nickelsen - released their third album, American Candy, in March last year.
A year later, they released a music video to accompany the second single off the album, "Am I Pretty?", through which the band wanted to highlight the message of self-love.
People from various walks of life were featured in the video, each sharing their own special story.
The New Paper spoke to frontman John via Skype on Tuesday (May 3).
What was the inspiration behind "Am I Pretty?"?
J: A lot of it stems from seeing how cruel people can be online, and the way that we try to doctor our lives in accordance with the perception that we think everyone has of ourselves. It's a message of, for lack of better terminology, "Screw the haters".
How did the video concept for "Am I Pretty?" come about?
J: Once the song was recorded, it seemed fitting to do the video in that fashion, because of the content and message we were trying to convey.
How did you find people to be in the video?
J: We knew quite a few of them, and the director Cole (Kiburz) found a lot of the others. We were really excited that people were so open to the idea, and really willing to share a little piece of themselves in the video.
Female empowerment is something that's often discussed in the media nowadays. Do you think there's anything that guys go through that maybe doesn't get enough attention?
J: I think we're all climbing uphill, and it's important to recognise the struggles just as humans, and try to be support systems for each other. I'm very excited to be alive, and I think everybody should be.
Have you personally experienced something you think someone else out there might be going through?
J: I talk a lot about my experience in the songs I release, and hopefully that's a message, directly or indirectly, to folks, that they're not alone. I think that everyone's lost, and no one has the answers, and just hearing that is really important.
How was it transitioning from being part of a major record label, to producing and managing everything yourselves under 8123?
J: It's been a learning experience. We've had a few missteps, but adapting and learning from those mistakes make you who you are, so we wouldn't have it any other way. We answer to ourselves, and if that ultimately is the demise of our band, so be it, but we'll be able to truly say that we can stand behind what we're doing and what we've done.
Do you have a message for your fans in Singapore?
J: What's up, how are you? We miss everybody there, we miss Singapore. We can't wait to be back, and as soon as we can, we will definitely do so. I hope everyone's doing well, behaving themselves, at least enough just to not get caught, and we can't wait to get back there.