They’ve come a long way from the days when Nash Overstreet and Ryan Follese formed the band “Miracle Drug.” Since adding two band members and calling themselves “Hot Chelle Rae,” the band has soared to the top of the charts and achieved rock star status with their hit song “Tonight, Tonight.”
The Voice-Tribune spoke to Follese, the lead singer and guitarist of the band, to learn a little about Hot Chelle Rae, who played at The Louisville Palace on Tuesday while on The Science and Faith Tour with The Script.
“Hot Chelle Rae” is named after one of your band’s most devoted female fans. Is there a story behind that?
She’s kind of just a crazy stalker. She was this girl that we befriended and her handle online was Chelle Rae. There’s a much longer version but that will go on forever.
How did the band come together?
Nash and I started writing songs together. We were doing solo stuff at the time. Jamie was just prepubescent Jamie then. Ian was in Europe for awhile and came over to the US and said, “You know what, I can play bass.” And then, Jamie’s parents said he had to graduate from high school before he could play in the band.
When you released “Tonight, Tonight” did you ever imagine it would lead you to where you are today?
The thing about the band is everyone is incredibly motivated. We knew we were going to (be successful) whether it was this summer or next. The song came out on my birthday, Valentine’s Day, of this year, and it just kept going and going and going. We kind of had a feeling it could be the one but you never know.
You just arrived in Louisville for the concert. Is this your first time here?
No we’ve been here before, but never really got a chance to tour the city. I imagine that we’ll go out with The Script and go barhopping after the show.
Do you have a favorite city you’ve visited so far?
We’ve toured all over the country but haven’t toured the west coast as much as we would like. We love Chicago, and we’ve had a lot of good shows in Michigan and Wisconsin. It’s hard to pick. Having good shows is all that matters.
You wrote about 50 songs when creating your first album “Lovesick Electric” and obviously had to leave some off the album. Will those songs appear on the second album?
No, we’ll just let those be in the top secret folder of Hot Chelle Rae.
What has been your craziest experience so far?
The VMAs (MTVs Video Music Awards) was definitely the coolest, craziest experience of my life. Being on the red carpet, sitting in the seats, Ian meeting Beyonce, Kanye, and Russell Brand just came up to me and introduced himself. It’s been a whirlwind for us and we definitely want to go back.
Another experience that was equally as crazy but also very weird – this girl the other day asked me what’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever been asked to sign? And she pulled out a brand new (feminine product).
What can we look forward to from Hot Chelle Rae in the future?
The new single went to radio today. It’s called “I Like It Like That.” If you like “Tonight, Tonight,” then you’ll like this one. The second album comes out Nov. 29, but we haven’t named it yet. We just want to say thank you to all of the fans and they need to be excited because we’re very proud of it and it will be as good or better than “Tonight Tonight.”
Nash Overstreet: (lead guitar/vocals) from Nashville, Tenn.
Ryan (RK) Follese: (lead vocals/guitar) from Los Angeles, Calif.
Jamie Follese: (drums) from Nashville, Tenn.
Ian Keaggy: (bass/vocals) (California) from Costa Mesa, Calif.
- Ryan and his brother Jamie Follese, and Nash Overstreet are the sons of A- list Nashville songwriters. Bassist Ian Keaggy’s dad is a world renowned Grammy-nominated guitarist.
- “Tonight, Tonight”: peak position at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 so far.”
photos courtesy of LeAnn Mueller
Category: Life & Style Cover Stories
About the Author (Author Profile)
Ashley spends half her time writing stories at The Voice-Tribune office and half her time out on the town conducting interviews, while occasionally dressing in wild outfits to fully immerse herself in the experience (aka Princess Leia at Comic Con). Ashley is a huge UofL fan and loves the Yankees and the Boston Celtics (she is fully aware of the irony). She hopes to one day outshine Erin Andrews on ESPN and enjoys running, Bardstown Road/Fourth Street, Breaking Bad and reality TV (she’s not ashamed to admit that).