Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Hawkins opens up on It's True (its past and future)

By Kevin Coffey

“I knew It’s True wasn’t over.”

While the band had called it quits last summer, Adam Hawkins still had plans to continue making music.

But at the time, a lot of people were dumbfounded.

It’s True was the most promising local band to come around in awhile. They had successful tours to South By Southwest and California. The group was set to play the main stage at Maha Music Festival.

Things were happening. People were buzzing.

Then we found out, rather suddenly, that they were going away.

“It was mostly just me needing to remember what I was doing there — the attraction to being in a band,” Hawkins said. “I needed to get out of it.”

Last year, Hawkins called it “It’s True fever” and said all of the planning tours and trying to find label deals distracted from why he wanted to do it in the first place: to create music.

“We all put the blinders on a little bit and let other things get pushed out or crowded out,” he said.

But Hawkins wasn’t finished.

About a month into his sabbatical, he was writing music again.

“After having been away from it, I was getting the itch to be playing, recording or (doing) something creative,” Hawkins said.

The result, after months of work, is “Another Afterlife,” a nine-song EP that Hawkins and It’s True will release at a pair of shows — Friday at The Waiting Room Lounge and Saturday at The Bourbon Theatre in Lincoln.

The songs are a nice compliment to the band’s debut record, “It’s True,” that was released last year and was on my best of 2010 list. It also includes one, “Here I Come,” that became a staple of the band’s live show toward the end.

The songs are often pretty melodies and include Hawkins’ angelic vocals. Then, as It’s True songs tend to do, build with layer upon layer of interweaving music, sometimes beautiful and sometimes trashing.

Hawkins hints at some of his feelings in the lyrics of the songs. It’s not what the album’s about, he admits, but it’s there with lines such as “I don’t want to be the one who lets you down” or “looking at all of these people looking back at me it seems they’re seeing more than I would want them to see.”

Back last summer, the band’s demise maybe seemed sudden for those of us not in the know, but Hawkins, his bandmates and others close to him knew it might be coming.
The stress was wearing on him. He wanted a break.

Some people were upset.

Other people were teary-eyed at the band’s last shows. Hawkins was astonished when some fans told him they had driven across the country to see the band’s very last show in July.

Hawkins moved to Grimes, Iowa, to help his parents with the family business.
He also found out some other news: He and girlfriend are going to be parents.

This weekend’s shows will include the band’s old players — Kyle Harvey, Karl Houfek, Andrew Bailie and Matt Arbeiter (who’s flying back from New York for the show) — as well as some new ones.

But don’t expect a full resurgence of Hawkins, the band or his music. At least, not completely.

“It’s not like the band got back together. There’s not a tour schedule. We’re not thinking about the next show,” he said. “But I know we’ll playing music and writing. We feel lost when we’re not working on something creative — music or otherwise.”

Watch It's True's video for "Nothing At All" from Love Drunk:

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