I asked Frontman Aaron Bruno of AWOLNATION a few questions before he went on stage at Revolution…
What’s the weirdest thing on your i-pod?
There’s so many things that are weird on the i-pod. The weirdest thing would be an audiobook about DMT; its like 24 hours long but it’s something to listen to on long plane rides when I’ve taken a Xanax for anxiety so I feel like I’m in the spiritual realm.
You’re a Scorpio. How does that stand in your life?
I notice that I am one all the time. They say were extremely emotional, passionate, slightly dangerous that’s true. I think most of it makes sense. My guitar player Drew actually has the same Birthday as me so we’ve always had this 11/11 thing going on. 11/11/11 last year was scary I kind of thought that was when I was going to die… a lot of weird things were happening. The band was blowing up and I thought it was the end.
Does being in the music industry hinder any relationships?
There’s a lot against you but if you are in a good relationship it makes it much more special. You get to travel the world and if you care about someone enough you get to bring them along. Yet it is also hard because rumors start. But I kind of stay away from most of the drama. I’ve done a pretty good job, I think, of not becoming too famous. You’ll never read about me being at Paris Hilton’s party…. I just want to write songs and surf.
Are you or were you ever nervous performing on stage?
I feel most comfortable playing than anything else. We were in all these bands before… we were in hardcore bands and it was more about the live show rather than song, melody or writing. We’d get out there screaming throwing our mic around starting a mosh pit jumping in it ourselves grabbing someone by the shirt and screaming in their face and just having the time of our lives, you know. We were straight edge sober kids and all we had was our live shows. So I think I learned how to perform and feel comfortable sort of leading an event or a party before I learned how to write songs. And then around 21 we got more serious about writing songs and going through different genres leading all the way up to now.
… and what’s the worst that could happen? At this point the audience is already at the show. I get psyched when I can tell there’s a couple folks that maybe have no idea what they’re about to experience because a lot of people haven’t seen these rad punk rock shows that we’ve seen before… not our shows but other bands that are so rewarding to see that are more of a celebration of life and music and expressing yourself, because the world is pretty fucked up right? So it’s wonderful to have an outlet other than drugs or alcohol which is music and sometimes you can go behind them all that works for some people. I really enjoy sort of “de-virginizing” people’s concert experience.
What does music mean to you?
Music is life to me. Music flows like water does or like the earth rotates. I couldn’t imagine life without music; it saved my life. It’s also ruined my life at times, but it’s done everything for me, it is my life. I am music. That’s what I think about all the time. I’m constantly trying to think about the next song I’m going to write or how to improve a song I may be working on or how to improve our live show and it’s also helped keep me through the hardest times of my life where if I didn’t have music I don’t know what I would have done or if I would be here at all.
What life lessons stand out to you that have helped further your music career?
The heartbreak of not succeeding as much as I wanted to in previous bands has been the biggest and most valuable lesson by far. It fueled the fire for this one and made me fearless because I didn’t expect to do well anyways because I hadn’t in the past. It put me in the right head space to write a song I wouldn’t have written had my first band blown up like this, I don’t know where I would be now.