When was the band formed?
Danny Garcia: Freshmen year, the fall of 2011. I moved down here from Boca and we started jamming.
Andy Hernandez: I was like ‘yea I play guitar’ and I came over to play and he [Danny Garcia] started playing and I was like ‘yea I don’t play guitar.’ So then I started playing bass with him and we all started joining together.
Brett Gilbert: Separately I played with him [Danny Garcia] at my house and I have a lot of jazz roots and he has a lot of metal roots so at first it was very awkward. The only thing we played was ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ for two hours and it was really bad. Then we all got together and started playing [The] Strokes covers.
AH: For the longest time I was just the bassist and we didn’t have any singers. Then I decided to sing on one of the covers and that was the first video we put on YouTube, the Oberhofer cover, and that was the first time I ever sang and we just kind of went with it and I’m still singing.
DG: And then Jakki joined us in January as a full time bassist.
How many gigs have you guys played?
BG: Like 20 or 30
Which has been your favorite place to play?
DG: My personal favorite has been Eve nightclub. We rocked it. It shut down two days after we played though.
BG: We were bad luck.
Marc Fiol: I liked when we played at the Y[MCA]. We were on a platform outside and it was great.
BG: Every gig that we used to play we went through a company that would book us venues in Midtown and reserve the whole night for just their acts, so it would be us and then a bunch of rappers. So I guess my favorite gig would be when we played at the Fish House, because that was the first gig that we booked on our own and it was a very warm environment and we played well. We had a lot of fun because we didn’t take it that seriously and the crowd was into it.
AH: I would say my favorite was our first gig, which we played at Churchill’s Pub. That was the first time I sang in public and I was wearing this dumb poncho. Like, we were some 15 year old kids on stage. My favorite part about that night was before we played. There was a heavy metal group of middle-aged men performing-
BG: Shirtless middle-aged men with wireless guitars so they could run through the crowd.
DG: They were performing as if they were at the American Airlines arena rather than the tiny stage at Churchill’s.
What are your influences as a band?
DG: We all have a lot of different musical influences. I come from a more classic rock and metal background because I’m a guitarist. I got into more jazz though coming in and he [Andy Hernandez] got me more into indie rock after and now I’m really into experimental stuff. As a whole I would say that we lean more towards that Local Natives, Oberhofer at points sound.
AH: Just chill indie rock stuff, vibey groovy sounds.
BG: I get a lot of influences for my piano playing from Portugal. The Man and stuff like that. And for song writing its mostly Portugal. The Man, Local Natives, Yellow Ostrich.
MF: Coming into high school I came from a punk rock background like No Effect and Bad Religion, but when I started hanging out with him [Andy Hernandez] got me into indie rock.
AH: I got them all into indie rock, just saying.
MF: Yea we all started listening to the same stuff, and now I listen to more blues-rock.
What are the influences for the album?
DG: The thing is that this album has taken a while to write and record, so it’s seen all the different stuff. We started writing it sophomore year and its finally culminating this year, senior year, so we all have gone through a lot of musical changes so there isn’t one artist or genre that we’re trying to emulate. It would definitely fall under the indie rock genre though.
BG: The first song that we wrote for it was ‘Lost in my Mind’ which has a very Latin feel and a lot of Latin roots.
Jakki Davison: We also have some psychedelic mixed in though.
DG: There’s definitely a lot of influence from that. I got into psychedelic music junior year so in my writing I was heavily influenced by Tame Impala, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, and other bands like that that are making their way now. So you’ll hear that at points on the album.
Who is your key demographic?
DG: When we make our music, it’s not geared toward anyone. It’s more about what we’ll enjoy playing and how we want to portray the band.
BG: Every song has a message and you don’t want that to get skewed by what people want us to play. You want to make it sound the best. We want to love every song we play, and we want every song to have a message.
What are your plans for the future?
BG: We all plan on going to college.
AH: I’ll probably end up going the English route, with some sort of minor in music. I might do some sort of music engineering or music business or something like that because I still want to be musically involved but not living on the street.
BG: I’m very passionate about philanthropy, so I want to go into social entrepreneurship, which is basically the business of helping people. I want to incorporate music into my life, I just don’t know how just yet.
MF: I don’t really know what I want to do yet but I want to incorporate music as well because it is a big part of my life, so I might go into music engineering or study music in college. I also want to do computer science because I like that sort of stuff.
JD: I would like to study Japanese but I would still do something involving music therapy.
DG: I’m very interested in music production and I want to be a music producer.
So since you all plan to leave for college, does that mean no more Thanks after this year?
DG: I wouldn’t say that we are going to break up necessarily, because a break up is a collective decision to stop playing as a band, and I’m sure none of us want to do that.
AH: It’s more of a hiatus.
DG: If the chance comes up that we can play again, obviously we will. And we can still send each other tracks that we record on our own, so it’s not difficult to continue making music. With technology nowadays we can still have a band but not necessarily play together.
BG: There’s no such thing as goodbye, just see you later.
Thanks’ self-titled album is out on September 30th