The Floozies are riding an amazing wave of energy from clamorous crowds and choice festival slots across the country. Powered by brothers Matt and Mark Hill, it’s humbling to see these two grow in popularity and enjoy the experience all the while. Their packed festival sets, as well as their own quick to sell out shows, are important stops on the path to their dream come true headlining set at the legendary Red Rocks coming up on October 8th (tickets here).
Amid the lead up to their Red Rocks show and a busy summer ahead, our own Rex Thomson caught up with the brotherly duo before one of their two well received sets at the High Sierra Music Festival.
Live For Live Music: I’ve interviewed a couple of other “Brother Bands” and one of the things I always want to know is, did you guys get along as kids?
Mark Hill: Yeah man. We were best friends. Still are!
Matt Hill: Awwww… thanks Mark.
Mark H: Yeah, we never really fought.
L4LM: Another theme of brother interviews is one brother saying their parents liked the other one better. Is that the case with you guys as well?
Matt H: I would hope they wouldn’t…
L4LM: I’ve heard your parents are music fans, especially of the funk. Were they supportive of you and your decision to pursue music?
Matt H: They were very supportive…we were really lucky.
Mark H: I remember when Matt was in a band a long long time ago, Dad would drive them everywhere. And he would unload their gear.
Matt H: I was too little to carry my amp.
L4LM: Wow. How young were you when you started playing?
Matt H: I started playing when I was eleven…I started playing shows when I was twelve. Just as around Kansas City at that point. Fairs…things like that…
L4LM: So your parents got you instruments and lessons?
Matt H: Yeah, we’ve got them to thank.
Mark H: They were huge in helping us find this life.
L4LM: Have they gotten an official thank you in a liner note yet?
Matt H: I don’t think people even do liner notes anymore. We thank them on Instagram and stuff though.
L4LM: What elements go into a perfect Floozies show?
Matt H: They’re all perfect, man. Unless they suck or something…those are no fun.
Mark H: Those sucky ones don’t happen very often…
Matt H: Not in a long time.
Honey Moon Phase (Featuring Ryan Zoidis)
L4LM: You guys had some good opportunities to build your fan base opening for other bands. Now that you’re in the position of bringing other bands along for the ride, how important is it to you to find just the right acts to work with?
Mark H: It’s a really great opportunity…but it’s really hard. You want it to sound right, above all.
Matt H: We just try and pick bands we like. We leave stuff like draw to the suits. We pick stuff we like and set it to them, like “What about this guy?” We just confirmed “Daily Bread.” I heard about him from some college kids in the south, and he reminds me of early Pretty Lights and Manic Focus. So we were like “Him, get him.”
L4LM: You guys have enjoyed a rapid rise through the music scene. I’m guessing your musical bucket list is getting checked off quickly. What’s left of your big goals?
Matt H: We were just talking about that on the way up here. Headlining Red Rocks is the last one. Then I guess we’ve got to make a new list.
L4LM: Did you write out an actual bucket list?
Matt H: Not on paper, but definitely in my head. We headline Red Rocks October 8th, so October 9th, it’ll be time to write the new bucket list. “Dear Europe…please book us…”
L4LM: In trying to describe your music to someone, the best I could come up with was “Funktronica.” How did your sound evolve?
Mark H: Yeah, I feel like it was pretty organic. We had a strong funk upbringing, and Matt dug deep into electronic music and started creating his own sounds. And it just seemed natural to mix that in with our instruments.
Matt H: Yeah, we’re just trying to make music that we like the best and are best at. It wasn’t like some big plan…to mix these two things together like “What the world NEEDS is these two things…together!” It was just “Let’s make music.” and this is what we arrived at I guess.
L4LM: You live shows are very loose and “Of the moment.” How much of your musical direction in the live setting is based on crowd reaction versus pre-show planning?
Matt H: It’s hard to say. We just try and be in the moment and…
Mark H: It happens really naturally…
Matt H: It makes it a lot more fun for us, and everyone else. We wanna have a go at it, rather than just play through the song like it was on the album, or wherever…
Mark H: What the show is like…the energy of the people in front of us…that’s all a part of it. Since we’re brothers and we’ve been doing this so long…and I feel like the crowd is following us. I’ll start doing this tom thing, and Matt will start doing this out of nowhere loop thing that is like four minutes long. We might not even realize we did it…it just happened. But it happened because the crowd was on the same page as us. They trusted us.
Matt H: We make a set list as just a guide, but we go off script pretty easily. I like to have an idea of what we’re doing, but I also like to throw new stuff at him that he hasn’t heard yet. It’s fun to surprise him!
Mark H: He makes me do things I didn’t know I was capable of.
L4LM: Sounds like the end of White Men Can’t Jump where Wesley Snipes throws Woody Harrelson the alley-oop pass to force him to dunk when he couldn’t before…
Mark H: Yeah!
Matt H: See! You didn’t know you could do that.
Mark H: (Chuckles) Yeah, he throws me alley-oops all the time.
L4LM: You guys seem to keep dropping new tunes constantly.
Matt H: We’re just always making stuff. I get really excited and I want to play it.
Mark H: He makes things constantly. He’s always working on music. He gets excited and then I get excited then we end up dropping tunes all summer at festivals and stuff…we just can’t wait to release it!
Matt H: We have the means to release music whenever we want, you know, worldwide. We can just drop a song on SoundCloud…
Mark H: One time recently we had a song go out just for an hour. We were like “We can’t release it yet, but here it is for an hour.” If you can get to it enjoy.
L4LM: Well, it is the Internet. I’m sure somebody grabbed it down.
Matt H: Yeah, I’m sure. It was really just to share. The whole point of making music is to share it. It’s just a song.
L4LM: You’re out supporting your new album Granola Jones. Are you noticing a major difference between how you recorded the songs and how you play them live?
Matt H: It’s a lot different live for sure.
Mark H: It’s so different.
Matt H: What’s on the album is just what sounded best when I was making the album. Live though, it’s more fun to stretch it out. Things like, I took Karl Denson‘s guest solo and I play unison on it on the guitar. And that’s something we didn’t have on the record, it’s just fun to do. It’s fun to play Karl Denson stuff.
L4LM: It’s not like you can just lug Karl around with you all the time.
Matt H: Yeah! He’s too big. He’s too buff! You can’t fit him in no suitcase.
L4LM: Karl Denson is one of the few guys who could serve as his own security and roadie at the same time.
Mark H: I don’t know. I’m a pretty strong guy.
L4LM: No argument. Just saying. Karl has even slimmed down from how he used to be.
Mark H: I saw him on Jam Cruise…he was eating an avocado. I thought “I gotta get into avocados.” So I went on tour and ate 6 avocados a day.
Matt H: I asked him for workout tips…he said “I just play a lot.”
L4LM: Well, thanks for taking a few minutes away from soundcheck to chat with us.
Matt H: Absolutely, thanks for having us.
Mark H: Much appreciated.
Be sure to catch The Floozies at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on October 8th for their first ever headlining performance at the storied Morrison, CO venue! The band will be joined by Michal Menert & The Pretty Fantastics, SunSquabi, and Russ Liquid for this exciting dance party, and we can’t wait to get down with the grooves. Tickets are moving fast, but they can still be found here.
This weekend, New Orleans gets a special treat with the official Bear Creek Bayou afterparty at Republic NOLA featuring The Floozies with very special guests John Medeski, Skerik, Ryan Zoidis, and Jesus Coomes! Get tickets here.