Friday, July 05, 2013

INTERVIEW: The Mowgli's

Emerging Los Angeles-based eight-piece folk-pop band The Mowgli’s just released their highly-anticipated debut album, Waiting For The Dawn via Photo Finish/Island Records to great praise, especially for the sun-drenched standout singles, "The Great Divide" and "San Francisco".

In support of the new album, the band is hitting the road for a massive summer tour that includes stops at Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza as well as the Bunbury Music Festival in Cincinnati. 
In anticipation of their performance at Bunbury, vocalist Katie Mowgli was kind enough to shed some light on the band’s diverse musical influences, including their love for Queen’s vocal harmonies and their “Be A Mowgli” campaign.    

In reviews, you have been compared to many great bands like Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros and Fleetwood Mac but who and/or what do you say are your influences?   
“There are 8 Mowgli's and every single one of them plays an intricate part in creating our sounds. We have all been influenced by different bands and genres and it comes through when writing or composing our songs.  One Mowgli might come to the band with a song that sounds like folk, but once another Mowgli puts classic guitar riffs on it, or doo wop back ground vocals, it becomes its own beast. To answer this question more specifically, because it's probably one of the hardest to answer, we are influenced by everything from Buddy Holly and The Beatles to Misfits and Wu Tang clan. A lot of us were into the music scenes surrounding the early 2000s, like hardcore, emo, electro pop, etc. We are also constantly inspired by the discovery of new artists on a regular basis.” – Katie Mowgli

You have played a few festivals, including Bonnaroo and will soon play Bunbury.  What do you like best about outdoor fests and what would your dream concert lineup be?
“Playing the festival circuit has been a dream come true to this band! We are all music heads ourselves, and have spent most of our teenage and young adulthoods saving up for festival tickets and rushing to the front of crowds so we can be front row for our favorite bands. In addition to having the opportunity to share our music with crowds of festival size magnitude, we get all access passes to all the best festivals across the country, ALL SUMMER LONG! Being that all 8 of us have varying music tastes, I'd say festivals like Bonnaroo, that have hundreds of artists, including legends like Paul McCartney, Tom Petty, R. Kelly, Wu-Tang Clan and Bjork playing for 4 days straight, or Bunbury who have some of the hottest headliners in music today are the closest thing we can think of to a "dream line up".” – KM

A lot of people are excited to see you guys but what bands are you most excited to see at Bunbury?
“We are really excited to be coming back to the East Coast, first and foremost, so we are excited to see all of you guys too! Bunbury has some of our favorite artists of today playing! FUN!, MGMT, Walk The Moon and Tegan and Sara are a few obvious calls...who isn't stoked for a line up like that? But we are also excited to see our friends, Youngblood Hawke! Also, one of our favorite bands to catch at festivals this year has been twenty-one pilots. If you haven't seen them live yet, DON'T MISS IT! I think the entire festival is going to rule and we can't wait!” - KM

My favorite song on your excellent debut album is the danceable “Slowly, Slowly” with its jangly guitars and driving, post-punk rhythm.  What is your favorite song to play live and why?
“Funny you mention “Slowly Slowly” in this question because I'd say it's one of the entire bands’ favorites to play live too! That’s the part of the set where we really cut loose and go nuts. Who can sit still when the drums are driving like that? “Hi Hey There Hello” is a really fun song to play, too, because the audience usually sings along with us! We've spent the past six months touring our 5 song EP, Love's Not Dead, so it's been really fun for us to play some of the newer ones off of our record, Waiting For The Dawn now that it's been released! Honestly, I think this answer changes every night! – KM

What one older and one current song do you wish you would have written yourself?
“Speaking only for myself here, if you haven't heard of them, there is a little band out there called Lucius. They are a 5 piece with not one, but 2 incredibly strong female fronts. Their entire self-titled EP is epic, and I often find myself wishing I was in a project like that. They have a song called “Go Home” that can bring most of The Mowgli's to tears... it's that powerful! I hope I can write a song that strong one day.
As for older songs, well, the list is endless, but because of my current emotional state, I'm gonna say, “You're My Best Friend” by Queen. Not only for the touching lyrics, but Queen's vocal arrangements are the best of all time, ever, (The Beach Boys stand with them) and my goal for The Mowgli's is that one day, our own vocal arrangements can evolve to be anywhere near theirs.” - KM

Along with the album release you created the “Be A Mowgli” campaign ( can you please expand on that?        
“The Mowgli's have always had the intention of bringing what Family of The Year calls "Posi Vibes" into the world. To us, that's what being a Mowgli means! We want to do what we can to make the world a better place, and we believe one of the simplest ways to begin this process is to perform random acts of kindness when and wherever possible. "Be A Mowgli" is our way of inviting fans and friends to get on board with this mission! is a place where you can share your random acts of kindness with the internet, and possibly inspire others to join the movement! It's all about paying it forward and spreading the Love, and it starts with us!” - KM

You can still get tickets to catch The Mowgli's at the Bunbury Music Festival next weekend in Cincinati here:

Watch the video for "The Great Divide" here:


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