Interview: Garron Dupree Talks Crazy, Wonderful Life Touring with 'Say Anything' and 'Eisley'

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Musician Garron Dupree started performing and touring as a bassist/guitarist with 'Eisley' when he was 15-years-old--and hasn't stopped moving since.

How did you get your start in the music industry? What inspired you to first pick up the bass?

I got my start in the music industry at a pretty young age. We were signed to Warner Brothers Records at the time, and we had just released our first album Room Noises, which was selling pretty well.

So, naturally they had us touring like animals during that time. It was a pretty intense start for me, especially at 15.

Oddly enough, I only started seriously picking up the bass guitar in the same year that I started playing professionally. I'm truly a guitar player at heart, and I had been playing guitar since I was nine, so bass came pretty naturally for me. All of my family is pretty musical, so even before I started playing an instrument, I was watching a lot of other people play instruments.

You really pick up a lot from seeing people play a lot, especially at a young age. So, it came super naturally to me when I started playing bass. I caught on quickly.

You've played many a gig in your day. Can you remember your first?

Definitely. The first show I ever played was actually at the Bowery Ballroom in New York City, when I was 15.

I think it was a sold out show, or at least close to sold out. So there would have been probably 500-600 people there.

It was a pretty surreal experience. I'm a really relaxed person, naturally, which is a very good thing for me. I don't think I've really been nervous to play a show before, no matter how many people were there.

The closest I was to being nervous was the week before we played the Conan O'Brien Show in 2007. It was the first time we had been on national TV, and I was like "Wait...

Like, millions of people watch that show right? Millions. Oh god..." But by the time we actually played the nervousness had passed and I was pretty chill.

You say your busiest year to date was 2014. Is there one of the 91 shows you performed that sticks out the most?

So, I mentioned that I play with the band Eisley, but I also play with the band Say Anything. Eisley is a pretty vibey band, but Say Anything shows can get really intense.

We played in Austin, TX last year, and at any given point in the show, there was an entire crowd of fans on stage with us.

They were running all over the place, stage diving, singing into our microphones, and pretty much losing their minds.

At one point I got kicked in the head, only to look up and see a kid hanging from the rafters in the ceiling.

I don't even know how he got up there. We may have been dealing with some sort of superhuman.

"At one point I got kicked in the head, only to look up and see a kid hanging from the rafters in the ceiling

HOW did you play 42 shows in the month of June 2013!? For a less vague take on this question: Who did you perform with during the month, and how did you manage such a hectic schedule?

That month, the stars somewhat aligned and Say Anything did a Headlining tour to support an album that had just come out, and brought Eisley on the tour as main support for Say Anything. So, every night I would play a nearly hour long set with Eisley, leave stage while crew did our set change and try to rest a bit, and then had to come right back out and play an even more intense hour and a half with Say Anything.

So I played 2 shows a day, for 21 days of that month. The tour was actually almost two months long, but June was the busiest month of that tour, making it the busiest month of my career. So far...

Which album from your discography did you enjoy working on the most?

I enjoy all of the records I've recorded, so it's pretty hard to pick a favorite. Generally speaking, working on albums can tend to be much more of a labor of love, for me at least.

Making albums tends to be when bands go through most of their 'growing pains.' It stretches you creatively, and it tends to introduce a lot of self-doubt about what you're doing or making.

Making a record is a bit like birthing a child (and all mothers out there unanimously said "aw hell no it isn't!"), because it can be really difficult, and it pushes you in ways you've never felt pushed, but when you're done you have something that you're proud of for the rest of your life. Then as that album grows it begins to mean more to you as the time passes, and you get to hear about what that album means to people.

It's an amazing thing. I know I didn't answer your question at all with that, but it's really impossible to name a favorite.

What are you currently working on? What can we expect to see in the near future?

After being on the road or in the studio for around 9 months of last year, we're all taking a little bit of time to take a breath.

But, not for long.

This year, Eisley will begin recording a new record, so stay on the lookout for that; I will also be in the studio with a Say Anything side-project called Two Tongues, and will be back on tour with Say Anything in the summer, and possibly Eisley after that.