Existing as road warriors for essentially the past six years (opening for Lil Jon, Taylor Swift and Demi Lovato, among others), the members of Hot Chelle Rae have honed their talents and charisma into an energetic live show that magnetizes and allures audiences. That’s part of the plan when the band headlines a show at the Bryce Jordan Center on April 21.
“We’ve been going crazy and it’s been a really exciting time starting up again. I think that the coolest thing is that it feels like we’re starting a miniature career all over again,” lead guitarist and backing vocalist Nash Overstreet said. “But it’s like we’re starting over in the best way possible: We’re challenging ourselves, not repeating what we’ve already done.”
While the typical pop-rock elements like bubbly guitar riffs, non-threatening lyrics and an emphasis on the party persist on just about all of Hot Chelle Rae’s songs, the band also has adequately carved out its own niche and style.
“One of our interests as songwriters is creating some really quirky and clever lyrics, which is really hard to pull off without people hating the song,” Overstreet said. “If you can get away with things like ‘Zach Galifianakis’ (one of the band’s lyrical references from their 2011 hit ‘Tonight Tonight’) and ‘Hung Up,’ having this kind of innuendo without making it cheesy definitely separates us, which is cool to me. Plus there’s the fact that we are songwriters and not just an artist who records a song without having anything to do with creating it.”
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Since its creation, pop music has been consistently criticized for being forgettable. Despite the band’s attempts to separate themselves from the fellow pop-rockers in their rank, they still have to make an everlasting impression in concert.
“The difference between us and most acts live is that we put so much extra into the show,” Overstreet said. “We’re very energetic, and when you come to see us, you get all the pop music that you love, but you feel the energy of a crazy rock show just because we’re jumping around and bringing people up on stage.”
Overstreet and his bandmates also seem to appreciate the array of admirers.
“We’ve got 5-year-olds who are into us and are loving it, and then we’ve got people who are 16, 18 and 25 who are also loving it and then their parents come,” Overstreet said. “Then there’s the parents who are either 40 or 60 years old, who are grooving and loving it instead of wishing that they didn’t have to take their kids to the concert. It’s going to be a lot of fun and if the crowds don’t move, hopefully they’re going to be forced to move just by the beats.”