A blend of pop, rock, and hip-hop, 2AM Club’s sound is uniquely relatable to a wide range of audiences. The band, named after the Mill Valley bar of the same name, consists of emcee Tyler Cordy, keyboard player Dave Dalton, drummer Ian O’Neill, bassist Matt Warshauer, and Mill Valley’s own, lead singer Marc Griffin and guitarist Matt Reagan. 2AM Club provides catchy lyrics and a contagious energy that leaves listeners singing, and grooving right along with the group. Be sure to check out, and support 2AM Club’s debut album, What Did You Think Was Going To Happen?, in stores now, and keep an eye, and ear out for their sophomore album, which should be available in late 2012.
Check out our interview with Marc Griffin below, to learn more about him and his burgeoning band:
How long has 2AM Club been together?
2AM Club, in its current form, has been together for 3 years.
How did you guys come together?
Matt and I grew up together in Mill Valley, and started playing together while we attended Tamalpais High School. I then met Tyler, and his best friend Dave, in college. When Tyler and I decided to move to LA to pursue music, Matt and Dave came along. Once we were in LA, we met “Sauce”, aka Matt Washauer, and all of our worlds came together, and the group began to form. So we’ve got a lot of family ties, lots of relations that go way back; we’ve always had a very familiar vibe as a band.
The name 2AM Club, is it inspired by the bar in Mill Valley?
Yeah man, it definitely is. In 2007, while recording with Jerry Harrison, we were still trying to come up with a name, and we kept meeting at The 2AM Club late at night, so we were just like, ‘shit, this is perfect, we are the 2AM Club‘. So, we had to borrow it (laughter).
What musical styles have inspired you?
Everyone has different inspirations in the band, and I think that’s what makes our sound so unique. For me personally, I grew up listening to hip hop music, like 2pac, as well as a lot of classic soul music like the Flying Family Stone, Stevie Wonder, and Donnie Hathaway.
What musical genre/style do you think 2AM Club‘s sound fits into?
I’ve been calling it soulful, intelligent pop music. We don’t back down from the pop world and the pop genre, that’s what we do; but we like to bring real soul, real intelligent and thought provoking content, to that pop sound.
You guys just dropped your debut album, What Did You Think Was Going to Happen?, how’s that feeling?
Yessir. It feels crazy, your first album is your whole life, ya know? It took a long time to get this one, 24 years, so it feels amazing.
With this album, what are you guys trying to get across to your listeners?
When we write songs, we just write about what we know and what we’re going through. It works out well, because even though the songs are inspired by our own personal experiences, they still resinate with other people, because others are dealing with similar sentiments in their lives. This album in particular, is about leaving home, and being uprooted from the world you’ve know. It’s about leaving loved ones behind (family, girlfriends, whatever) and being thrust into a whole different environment; having to really push yourself to break out of your comfort zone. I think a lot of people can relate to that, because they want, and need to do that in their lives as well; hopefully our album can help inspire them to do it.
Are there any songs on this album that have a special meaning to you personally?
Yeah, I mean, they all are equally special, but there is one about my dad, who passed away when I was 13, called Dearly Departed, that has an extra special sentiment for me. I think people will be able to pick up on that vibe when they hear the song, and hopefully they’ll be able to take a similar meaning from it as I do.
When did you know you wanted to be singer?
Man, it’s funny, when I grew up all I wanted to do was play basketball. So, it wasn’t like a life long thing. When I was younger, music was just something that was always there to support me. As I got older, I would just lock myself in my room and listen to music; just connect with it. I never really thought about making a career out of it at the time; I mean, I always knew I could sing, because I would sing along with the music and I knew I sounded something like what I was listening to. So, when I was 17, I started singing in a band at Tam High. That was the first time I had ever been in a band, so, for me, singing with a 5 instrument accompaniment that first time, once I felt that electricity, I just knew that’s what I wanted to do.
What motivates you each day to keep singing, and continuing to try to get better?
I think that’s the answer right there, trying to get better everyday. Everyday we want to make that day’s show better than the last; we want to sing better, preform better, we want to improve. I think you should challenge yourself everyday to be better than you were the day before; it gives you a reason to get up in the morning and keep going.
How does it feel when you’re on stage and you know the audience is vibing with you?
It feels, fucking amazing. That’s why we play music, so we can get on stage and have that feeling of just complete, what’s the right way to put it, I guess it just feels like a pay off. You work so hard, and you’re stuck in a little sweaty van for 8 hours a day; then you get on stage, and there are 1200 people out there with you, singing your songs, jumping up and down, just really feeling what you’re saying. There’s nothing better.
How has Marin played a role in your musical career?
I moved to Mill Valley when I was 13, from San Francisco, and my first thought about it (Mill Valley) was, I hate this place. It seemed too wealthy, too bougie, but as I grew up, I started to realize how great of a place it was/is, that the people there truly value music. Music has a lot of history in Mill Valley; they’re very tied together. Marin is a very liberal, open minded place that has always helped us, as well as many others (past and present) make music. We’ve been offered tons of support from people in Marin; even though we weren’t following the career path that most people who live in Marin do, ya know? I mean, we’re drop-outs; we don’t have any degrees or anything like that, but everyone has always been really supportive of us, and our music. So, as we’ve progressed musically, Marin has always been a huge kinda bandwagon for us.
Is there anything else you would like to say to the people of Marin out there supporting you?
Just, thank you from the bottom of my heart, ya know? We love you. It’s just amazing to have a whole community behind you; just supporting you because they truly believe in your music. That’s why it means so much to me, as well as to the group as a whole, it’s authentic support.
What’s the next step for 2AM Club?
The next step for the 2AM Club, is just to keep stepping (laughter). We’re just gonna keep touring for the next year or so, make our album, What Did You Think Was Going To Happen?, and its first single, Worry About You, the biggest album and single we can; and make it accessible to the people all over the world.
How can your supporters in Marin keep in contact with you guys?
You can check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and our Official Website. So yeah, anyone that wants to hit us up on Facebook, we always respond back. And follow me on twitter, @Mark2AM. Honestly, hit us up. I mean, there are 6 of us, we’re in a van a lot, and we like talking to our fans and hearing what the people have to say.
You can listen to a couple of 2AM Club’s newest singles (one featuring Chiddy, from the rap duo Chiddy Bang and another featuring Big Sean and Dev), and a few tracks off of, What Did You Think Was Going To Happen? below: