Interview with Lars Heemskerk of FIVEOHfirst

Hardcore pop punk front man Lars Heemskerk of FIVEOHfirst answered some brief questions regarding the band’s beginnings, their musical influences, what their upcoming plans consist of along with everything else thrown in between.

1. What type of band are you?

Lars: All of us are really good friends so that makes working together musically easy because we are very open to criticism. We love to hang out and have fun and we would do anything for anyone that is a fan of our music.

2. Tell us the brief history of your band.

Lars: In high school we were all part of different bands and we were all in music classes together. In senior year we decided to start FIVEOHfirst in the Spring of 2006. Despite being at several different colleges across Illinois we’ve managed to keep writing new music playing shows. We’re looking forward to being done with school and continue to promote and extend our fan base.

3. Who are your musical and non-musical influences?

Lars: Our musical influences consist of New Found Glory, Fall Out Boy, Four Year Strong, A Day to Remember, Blink-182, All Time Low, Muse, The Devil Wears Prada, Haste The Day, Hit The Lights, Cartel, Ice Nine Kills, The Matches, You Me and Everyone We Know, UVERworld Non-musical influences: Our family and friends are our biggest influences. They’ve been there for us ever since we started and they have always been supportive.

4. What are your dreams and goals?

Lars: Our dreams and goals would that all of us agree that we would love to be able to tour full time and do nothing but FIVEOHfirst and make a living. We would also really like to get the opportunity to tour over seas in Europe and Japan in the near future.

5. Who writes the songs, what are they about?

Lars: Writing for us is a big group effort. it always starts with someone bringing an idea to everyone and we go from there. We feel like our lyrics a lot of times will be about a very specific moment in our lives that has had a big affect on us. but we try and get across that emotion so that anyone who is listening can connect in some way.

6. How do you promote your band and shows?

Lars: We have been using myspace and facebook as a way to promote for shows but we’ve found its a lot more effective going to other bands shows and just talking to their friends and fans.

7. Describe your shows, visual and musically.

Lars: Visually we try to put on a very energetic and intense live performance. We put all our energy into getting the crowd into the music as well as giving them something exciting to watch.

8. What’s your outlook on the record industry today?

Lars: We think that record labels still serve a very important purpose in the music industry and that there are alot of new ways to get exposure as a band out there and it’s just a matter of time till some takes advantage it.

9. Tell us a story about a day in your life.

Lars: A day for FIVEOHfirst starts in the afternoon with either some practice or writing. If we don’t have a show the party starts early. If we have a show we probably will start partying anyway except for Lars cause he will be running around trying to keep everyone from doing anything to out of control. Somewhere along the line Chris will yell a lot, Steve will get upset, and Adrian will try and drink anything and everything he sees, Rizzo will start making Jager Bombs, and Danny will just sit somewhere and look cute.

10. What inspires you to do what you do?

Lars: What inspires us the most is seeing other bands that are having fun doing what they love and people that enjoy and can relate to our music. Two other big influences that do not get the credit they deserve is snacksand partying.

11. What advice would you give to fellow bands?

Lars: Advice for fellow bands: Biggest thing is to be realistic. If you love what you’re doing and who you’re doing it with keep doing it. Never give up, never take yourselves to seriously, and never let anyone tell you that your wasting your time.

12. How does music affect you and the world around you?

Lars: We’ve all been involved in music our whole lives and it is a big part of who we have all become as individuals. Music is one of those things that is never perfect and can always change. One of the most exciting parts of playing together is being able to grow musically and really learn how to get a truly unique sound and that’s something that will take us a long time together.

13. What’s the best and worst thing about playing clubs/venues?

Lars: The best thing about playing a show is being able to get out in front of people and make new friends. Of course there’s always the possibility that the stage and sound setup will not be what you expected, but most of the time the positive’s take out the negatives. Oh yea! and drink specials rock!

14. Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there.

Lars: Our next show is going to be the November 28th the weekend after thanksgiving in Carol Stream, IL. People should come because it is going to be our first show in our hometown since the summer and we will be playing a couple new songs.

15. Any last words?

Lars: We are FIVEOHfirst. We are addicted to Mexican cuisine, we like tiger woods gold, we like to party, we like to play music, and we love meeting new people. Check us out on itunes. If you like it? Tell your friends.

About the Author

Natalie Perez has been a Music/Entertainment Journalist for 7 years now having first started out with her middle and high school newspapers. She now writes for a handful of various online and print publications. Her goal is to get her name out as much as possible until she becomes a well-known Music Journalist!

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