On The Rise: American Babies

American Babies are a musical staple to the Philadelphia music scene. Tom Hamilton of the band, started his career building a fanbase over years while fronting the electro-rock band Brothers Past. In that time, he released two critically acclaimed albums and performed over 150 shows a year.

He decided to take a turn in his musicaly career and go back to his roots, forming American Babies. The band is currently on a national tour, and stopped by to perform at Club Cafe in Pittsburgh last week.

Empty Lighthouse had the opportunity to sit down and talk to Hamilton about the formation of the band and what else they have in store in regards to upcoming releases, recording and more tours.

Read further and get to know American Babies, a band on the rise.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: How did you first get your start in music?
AMERICAN BABIES: I grew up in a musical house. My mom, dad and brother all played music and sang. I picked up the drums at age five, because my older brother played.

He switched or guitar when I was nine or ten, and me wanted to be just like my brother, I made the switch as well. We played together around Philly from the time I was 12 until I was 21.

When he quit music to join the military is when I dug in and decided to make music my career. The rest is history...

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: Who are some of your musical influences?
AMERICAN BABIES: This is too great of a list to be accurate but a start would be: The Beatles, Radiohead, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Willie, Cash, Stereolab, Grateful Dead and my brother Jim.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: Who do you listen to in your spare time?
AMERICAN BABIES: I currently have been listening to a lot of Nirvana and Alice in Chains, with a steady diet of the Dead as well.

When I'm not touring, I try to maintain being creative. I produce records for other folks, or I direct and edit videos.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: What has been your most memorable experience?
AMERICAN BABIES: It's always a good time, with tons of good stories.

The funniest would be the time Brothers Past and myself were held for murder in Kentucky. We didn't do it :)

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: What is the craziest thing you've seen a fan do to get into a show or on stage?
AMERICAN BABIES: I guess the flashing of breasts always takes you by surprise.

It's always a pretty funny and uncomfortable situation.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: What advice would you give to other young people looking to succeed in the industry?
AMERICAN BABIES: Focus on the craft, and always be trying to get better.

A better played, a better writer, a better person, a better bandmate.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: When you hit a creativity block, what re-inspires you?
AMERICAN BABIES: Other forms of art. I watch a lot of movies or HBO shows. Go to museums. Creativity breeds creativity.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: How do you manage your time between your music and personal life?
AMERICAN BABIES: I'm not very good at it. I'm pretty much working 95% of the time I am awake. Fortunately, my girlfriend is a very understanding woman.

EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE: What are your upcoming plans in regards to more touring, releases and producing new music?
AMERICAN BABIES: Well, we just started a nine week national tour. Towards the end of it, we will be releasing a new EP called "Stark and Red" which drops on April 1st.

That came together while I was wrapping up "Knives and Teeth". After that, we'll be touring, touring, touring.

For more information and tour dates from American Babies, be sure to visit www.americanbabies.com!