Joe Jonas called into “The Morning Call” to discuss Music, Founding DNCE and its Future.
Check out the interview below:
LEHIGH VALLEY MUSIC: Hey Joe, how are you?
JOE JONAS: “I’m good, John, how are you doing?”
Just fine, thanks. Let’s jump into this: Tell me about the new album. I know it’s been out about two months, but what were you looking to do? How do you think it turned out? Tell me the story of it.
“Yeah, well, this is was a band I feel like I always kind of been excited to be able to get going and get started. So I hooked up with a couple friends of mine and said, ‘Hey guys, let’s get together and make a record.’ And cut to a year and a half later, and we’re touring. [Laughs]
“This is our second headlining tour and it’s just … the tickets have gone so quick and we’re so overwhelmed to play for so many people. And it genuinely feels great and so special. And the fan reaction, we couldn’t be more blessed.”
Between the EP and the album, did anything change? I mean, did you develop at all? Tell me the story that went into making the album.
“Yeah, I definitely feel that as a band we came together – closer. We were able to really find ways to develop and get more creative and kind of define the DNCE sound. I really feel like the album itself is a pretty good example of the body – who we are as a band.”
Tell me about the new single “Body Moves.” What was behind that? How does the song come together?
“Yeah, the song ‘Body Moves’[laughs], it’s about having a special connection with somebody.”
“Having a few drinks, letting loose and maybe it’s a little dangerous and you’re finding your way back to your or their apartment and kind of that moment – that feeling that you get.”
Is it something that you went through? Is it autobiographical?
“Yeah, definitely. Everything on the record is – whether it’s emotional, if it’s just sexual, fun, um, it could be a moment in time. We try to pull from personal experiences.”
OK, so let me take a step back. And obviously “Cake by the Ocean” was such a huge hit. Number one, was that a surprise of you – how well that song did?
“You know, I think we had no expectations of how it would do. We kind of just said to ourselves, ‘Let’s see what happens.’ And, like, knock on wood, we have a song that connects with a crowd and a group of people, and we hope that it can transcend and go far. So [laughs] we’re overwhelmed we still hear it on the radio. That’s crazy to us.”
I had read that that was almost a toss-off song; that you guys never intended to release that. Was that correct?
“We didn’t really know where it was going to go. We felt like it was just the first song we had a breakthrough at what the sound could be like. But once the connection really stuck with the audience and we for weeks we played it for people around us – label people, management – and they freaked out and they’re like, ‘This is definitely the song to go with as a first single.’ From then on, we were like, ‘Alright, we have the first one.’ We were lucky with the first song, and that makes everything much easier.”
Did that sort of decide the direction you guys went in, or did you guys have a sound in mind when you recorded the EP and the album?
“Yeah, it definitely was the song that kind of, um, set the direction of what we wanted to do. It was one of those things, like you don’t really know what’s gonna happen when you get in the studio with some friends and a new band. That ‘Cake by the Ocean’ is gonna be the … You know, if we can release that to start with, then I think we can go with whatever we really want musically, because it’s such a [laughs] left-of-center tune.”
Yeah, absolutely, yeah. Tell me this: Your solo album [2007 solo debut] “Fastlife” – why didn’t that connect as well as DNCE has? I mean, what do you think was the difference?
“I’d say, probably, it was maybe a few too many cooks in the kitchen. You know, I was between records with The Jonas Brothers. And I feel like you’ve gotta be able to go through kinds of experiences to really find the style of music you want.
“We’re lucky enough to have this career as a job – be able to make music for a living. And you don’t know what’s gonna connect, what’s not. And I’m proud of that music – I listened back, actually, the other day, I was just going down memory lane and playing the songs. Thing is, there’s a lot of growing I did musically and as a songwriter.”
Did you always intend to form a new band? I mean, when you put that album out, did you expect at some point that you were going to have another band?
“Yeah, I kind of always thought about it. I even spoke with Jack [Lawless, DNCE’s drummer] a lot about the idea of getting together and starting another band. We talked about what it would be like to create a new album, but, like do something on our own. We weren’t sure what it would be exactly, but we just had these ideas, and somehow it came together.”
Compare it – is it too early to compare it to the Jonas Brothers? I mean, can you look at it and say, ‘This is better in some ways or this is different in some ways?’
“I mean, I think, you know, there’s a familiar feelings that you get when you perform live. And, you know, you might see some familiar faces in the crowd, but I’m even playing some of the same venues that I played in at the beginning of our career.
“So I think all you can really do is sit back and smile and just appreciate these kind of moments and say, like, you’re getting to be able to live your dream and continuing to do so.”
It was interesting. I saw you guys play at the club Coda in Philadelphia a year and a half ago. And I was actually surprised at how many Jonas Brothers fans were there. You know, you could tell that they were Jonas Brothers fans. But you guys have a whole new demographic, I have to believe. You think the same thing?
“Oh, I think so. Yeah, I really believe that DNCE, it’s kind of cool – a lot of the audience found our stuff through Spotify and Apple Music and whatnot, and they just became fans of the band through that. And it was kind of cool to be able to see that.
“Of course there are some fan base that came from all of our past endeavors, but I really, truly think that DNCE fans, we’re noticing that they’re discovering us through different ways, constantly.”
Alright, let me ask you some different questions. What do you think of all the attention that you’re getting for the Guess underwear ad?
“[Laughs] Um, it’s flattering. You know, I had a pretty heavy, intense, I guess you could say boot camp experience from doing all that. So I feel like it, in some ways, feels like hard work pays off.”
Good. Um, you want to say anything about Sophie Turner? All the … as I prepared for this interview, like everything I looked at on the Internet says Sophie Turner …
[Publicist cuts in: “Sorry to interrupt; can we just focus on the tour, or other entertainment things?”]
Fair enough. The last question – and this is also sort of a weird question. Ever think you would ever get back together to do anything with The Jonas Brothers?
“Yeah, you know, I think, like, you never say never, ‘cause you’re never exactly sure what the future holds, and it could be something down the road, you find a creative way to work together. But we’re very close – Nick and I live together; we work really hard to maintain that friendship, and we create together, we invest in certain things together.
“So I think if there’s something that kind of made sense down the road for all three of us, then maybe we try that route.”
Great . Hey, I wanted to ask you one last question – like going down memory lane. You guys, The Jonas Brothers, played our club in Allentown, Pennsylvania, a club called Crocodile Rock and you opened up for the …
[Laughs] Honestly? You remember that. You guys opened up for The Veronicas.
“I’ll never forget. Yeah, I loved that tour. It was a blast. And I remember that venue very specifically. So [laughs] I have to say it was a great time.”
I actually, believe it or not, interviewed you before that show – your publicist pitched me. I had never heard of you guys and he pitched me and I interviewed you. I think that was one of your first interviews at the time. I remember you were telling me about meeting Jon Foreman from Switchfoot in the rest room someplace.
“[Laughs] Yeah, been able to spend some time with them quite a bit. Um, it’s really, really cool to see how far they’ve come, as well, and we bump into each other whenever we are playing different venues. And it’s always good to see those guys.”