Interview – Jesse Tyre of The Grand Southern


Summer vibes are slowly making their way back into the city followed by music to set the mood. Los Angeles musicians, The Grand Southern, are helping out in this regard with the release of their new EP ‘Traded Heaven’ on June 23rd. Dash Hutton and Jesse Tyre are introducing music that grinds listeners to a halt with folk-rock at its best. Soul is held within and the depths of their lyrics resonates with every vocal. Rock and roll across the board will be proud of this new collection of tunes.

‘Traded Heaven’ had a simple conception. “The only motivation was a desire to record these songs we had written. Some we had been playing live and working out arrangements with the band, and others we only had a rough iPhone recording made when we wrote it.”   

A theme within is a sublime combination of genres. “Dave Way, who mixed the record, kept saying it’s an Americana vibe mixed with mid 80s production. We certainly weren’t looking for an overall message while writing these songs, but as the final six came together it looks like an arc of a relationship and there’s probably a story there.”  

Musically, Jesse had his favorite bits. “… probably how the old synth tracks compliment the pedal steel and baritone guitars. It’s such a cool vibe. I love Rachel and Renee’s singing as well.”

With their discography growing, Jesse elaborated on some specifics. “Honestly, this latest EP we did, and California the last song we wrote for our last EP [‘Vol. 1’] are probably my favorite songs. It felt like we broke through and gained a better understanding of how to use our voice and transmit ideas musically.”  

Performance aspirations are still easily dreamt for the future. “I want to do an MTV Unplugged in 1987 so Dash will finally let me use my double neck ovation. I miss playing in loud crowded bars and clubs, would like to do more of that. It’s very real and somewhat comfortable I guess.” It is not always easy though on the road. “Any performance is a learning experience and we’re grateful as musicians in general to have a chance to play, period.  That said, when you are playing songs you wrote that are very personal and a crowd that is not receptive, like we did at a corporate event recently, it doesn’t matter how much you are getting paid, it still kinda sucks.”   

Mr. Tyre had some thoughts on the modern music world. “We could do without a lot of this pop nonsense to be honest, seems our generation is lacking some soul… It’s out there, just have to look for it.   Music is more accessible than it’s ever been so theres always a chance to discover something new that you love or something old that you can fall in love with all over again.”

Creativity never stops for these men. “We made our first video this year, hope to do more of that. Always open to other stuff, but don’t really have any plans. [The music is] always evolving, so if we wanted to add or change anything, we would.  I think more spandex would be a good place to start.” Inspiration for The Grand Southern are plentiful as well. “Artists like Wilco, The War on Drugs, The Traveling Wilburys, to name a few. All the W’s.”

Jam on.

Give one of their new songs from their upcoming EP ‘Traded Heaven’, Sleeptalking, a listen below: