Exclusive Interview with Beyond The Sun
Beyond the Sun is a band who refuses to be boxed in by one particular genre of music. To them, their audience appeal reaches far beyond one specific genre. This led to the creation of their own genre: “shuffle.”
The name specifically came from lead singer Colin Radu’s imagination because he was reminded of the shuffle feature on your iPod that is an “amalgamation of all the stuff that you love.”
“We’re influenced by literally everyone, Coldplay to Childish Gambino,” Colin said. “We were putting out music that we thought was a certain thing and then people would come back and be like, ‘Well, you know, it’s not quite pop but we don’t quite know what to call it.’ It kind of became a thing. Instead of trying to fit a box, [we thought] what if we literally created our own that would we could fit into because we make it.”
If you aren’t familiar with the band, it is made of up of a tight-knit trio of brothers: Phil, Colin and Dalton Radu. Music has always been in their blood and a part of their family’s history — it just skipped a few generations.
“On our dad’s side, our great-grandfather, who we never actually got to meet, was a jazz drummer in the big bands,” Phil explained. “He played with Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Count Basie, and then it skipped two generations. His kids didn’t really play. Then the three of us, from the time we could, were putting on shows in our basement without even really knowing what we were doing. We just knew we liked to entertain our parents, put on a light show and dance around to music. We begged our parents and they rented up some gear. Within the first month, I think it was, they were like, ‘Okay, I think this is more than just a hobby.’ We haven’t really shut it down since.”
Originally, the boys hail from Bowmanville, Ontario, about 45 minutes outside of Toronto. They relocated to Nashville a couple of years ago, a move they credit as extremely impactful on the band and how they’ve been able to grow as artists.
“I think you just get better by being here,” Phil said of living in Nashville. “[There must be] something in the water. Everyone around you is hustling. Everyone around you is pretty much striving for the same goal. There’s a ton of like-minded people. In our hometown, we were literally the only three guys really pursuing music. Down here, half the city is pursuing music and the other half just works. I think just being here, we’ve grown as songwriters, we’ve grown in our sound, recording-wise or whatever, just by the influence of being around other musicians that make you want to get better and pushes you to get better every day.”
The band recently released their new single “STOP,” which they said was written in a moment of anger and frustration.
“We live in a world now where people feel like they’re so connected, and at the same time, I don’t know if we’re more disconnected than we’ve ever been because everyone just lives through Instagram and Facebook,” Phil explained of what inspired the single. “They feel like they’ve been with you your whole life even though maybe you haven’t been in a room with them in 10, 15 years. It would be people from high school or just people in your life that at one point you were really tight with, but maybe it was just because you live in the same town; there didn’t need to be much of a connection to be friends. And then… now your lives are so different, there’s really nothing to connect to you. So now, when you’re reaching out or you’re trying to reconnect, you go out and you sit there and they’re looking on their phone and you’re like, ‘We have nothing in common anymore. There’s literally nothing.’ They just want to be your friends for the sake of being like, ‘Oh well, you know, we’re friends.’”
Phil said Colin was the one who came up with the simple title, after being inspired by Ed Sheeran’s one-word song titles like “Don’t” and “Sing.”
Despite the fact the song flowed out of them like a “stream of conscious,” the song took a long time to actually come together.
“I think it took six months before it finally came to the proper form it is now,” Colin admitted. Phil agreed, saying it was just a matter of figuring out how to create what was in their head.
In terms of songwriting and inspiration for songs, the band typically keeps things in-house and personal.
“For the most part it’s been the three of us,” Phil said about their general songwriting process. “I mean 95 percent of the songs are written in-house. It’s just– one of us either comes with a title or just a concept or chords or melody. It never starts the same way. Every song kind of starts a little bit different and then takes on a little bit different shape. Also, all three of us do these exercises where we’ll each go to a room for 15 minutes and then you come back down and best idea wins. But usually it’s just that best idea goes first, and then the next idea [you] can flesh that one out and the next one.”
Up next for Beyond the Sun? They will be releasing another single coming out on June 29 called “Sound of The Summer,” which is leading up to their debut album Shuffle in early 2019.
“STOP” is now available on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, and Amazon. For more information about Beyond the Sun, you can visit their website or follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.